Paradise Lost and Regained – Book Review

Once in a while there comes a book which alters the way you think. It gives you insights and hope and a fresh perspective towards life. Towards everything. A few years back, The Alchemist did this to me. And then The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari. And now this one. I got this book as a giveaway some two years back and I never thought of reading it. It was my foolishness or maybe it wasn’t the right time for me to read this book.

The story is quite simple. It is about a deer who lives in forest in the beginning before it is captured and taken to the zoo. From there, the deer escapes and gets back to the forest only to find a new way to look towards the forest, towards the life that’s ahead. It’s perspective towards life in forest before the zoo and after the zoo will take you by surprise. As you read the book, chapter by chapter, the story engulfs you and soon you replace yourself with that deer.

Every chapter in this book is a take on different stages of our life. The beginning, the childhood, the teenage, the maturity, the old age. Life lessons which have a potential to change someones life, are rendered smoothly. The language used complements the subject very well and makes it easy to take the insights. My favorite chapters were those where the author has commented on the negative emotions that persists and the adverse effect of those emotions. Though many a times these emotions tend to give a dark shade to the book. But you’ll have to ignore it to understand what the author i really trying to convey.

Buy. Beg. Borrow. Steal. But read this book. You will not regret.

Warjuna – Book Review

What can I say about this book? This book totally surprised me. I judged the book by its title and thought it would be just another retelling of Mahabharat or The life of Arjuna. I was wrong. This is entirely different story. Author has borrowed a few characters and their characteristics from the Mahabharat epic. The rest is a story which you can imagine to take place 1000-1500 years back.

The central character of the story is Arjuna, Prince of a kingdom Wagharr somewhere in the North West of Bharat. It is a small kingdom that belongs to Kingdom of Avanti. But they are not obliged to pay taxes to Avanti as Wagharr supplies mercenaries and soldiers to Avanti. Wagharr is supposed to be protected by the Shield of Hanuman. On a tragic day, Kingdom of Wagharr is attacked by a mysterious enemy name Hayacree. While fighting against Hayacree, Arjuna was given the task to move women and children’s to a safe place. This journey outside his kingdom changes his destiny. Or maybe, walks him towards his destiny.

The Pros:
The story, writing, characterization is captivating and keeps you glued to the book. Arjuna goes through a transformation from first chapter to the last chapter. He is almost a different character at the end of the book. The descriptions of different states, their capitals, their palaces makes it easy to visualize. The are not many fight sequences in this book in spite of it being a warrior story. But there is a lot of strategy and politics. which I feel hold key to the kingdoms.The fantasy elements are very well blended and not overdone.

The Cons:
Names. I don’t understand why they have to be so difficult. The author wanted to differentiate the story from the epic but he went too far with the names. You can hardly remember characters going from one chapter to another. I had turn pages back to lookup for the role of characters to understand. Second is some characters are introduced very abruptly. They jump in front of you out of nowhere and they are supposed to be major players in the story. Kamsa and Draupadi for example. Lastly, There is a history of kingdoms which has been provided at the end. This should have been the first chapter to make it easy to understand the story. If you want to read this book, Go through this history first.

All in all, This is well written book and totally worth your time. The last chapter has enough suspense to make you wait for the next book in this series.

A Man Called Ove

“Sonja said once that to understand men like Ove and Rune, one had to understand from the very beginning that they were men caught in the wrong time. Men who only required a few simple things from life, she said. A roof over their heads, a quiet street, the right make of car, and a woman to be faithful to. A job where you had a proper function. A house where things broke at regular intervals, so you always had something to tinker with.”

I couldn’t start with anything else to review this book. This one paragraph pretty much sums up those two characters. Whatever they do in this book, good or bad, it’s because of this. One peculiar thing about Ove is that he never liked someone. He just disliked a little less. 

This book is a love story. A story about friends. A story about neighbors. A story about how simple things matter in life and how they shape up ones life. It’s a story about a man called Ove and his wife Sonja. Their love story forms the crux of this book. It spread in between the chapters and not continuous. Because of this, Every other chapter, I had to pause. Those words choked me and flooded my eyes. It breaks your heart. The very next chapter made me go ROFL. A roller-coaster ride which ends somewhere in the second last chapter. 

I tried to find flaws in this book. I couldn’t. Maybe because of the love story I overlooked them. Maybe it’s really well written. The characters in this book are weird and crazy. Ove will remind you of a Pixar movie “Up” and a TV show “Monk”. The Others easily stand out from the crowd. Their craziness, their foolishness, their stupidity, their love keeps you engrossed in the story. You wish that such characters were around you.

I wished there was more. More of Ove. 


muramba movie review

काल “मुरांबा” चाखला. “दोन पिढ्यातील अंतर” हा विषय चिरंजीव आहे. त्याचा परिणाम असा की नवीन पिढीला वाटते की जुनी पिढी “टिपिकल” आहे. पण हे “टिपिकल” असण्यामागचे कारण काय ते कधी जाणून घेण्याचा प्रयत्न मात्र करत नाही. खूपच.. फारच.. अगदीच.. “टिपिकल” असा शिक्का मारून मोकळे व्हायचे. आता हा “टिपिकल” शब्द वारंवार वापरण्याचे कारण म्हणजे तो असाच या चित्रपटात देखील वापरला आहे. चित्रपट मात्र “टिपिकल” नाही.

अलोक आणि इंदू यांचा ब्रेकअप हा या चित्रपटाचा मुख्य विषय. पहिल्या पाच मिनिटांतच आपण या कथेशी जुळतो. वेगळेपणा कुठे जाणवतो तर अलोकचे आई-बाबा ज्या पद्धतीने हा विषय हाताळता तिथे. वादविवाद खूप असले तरीही इथे प्रखरता जाणवत नाही. हलके फुलके पणाने कथानक पुढे जात रहाते. यातूनच हसण्याची संधी परत परत मिळते. मध्यंतरानंतर थोडा वेगळ्या वळणाने कथानक पुढे जाते. अपयशाची चव माहिती नसली तर नात्यांमध्ये काय प्रश्न येऊ शकतात हे सांगण्याचा प्रयत्न केलाय. आजच्या या गतीमान जीवनात निर्णय झटकन घेतले जातात. नात्यांविषयी सुद्धा असेच होते. ते किती चुकीचे आहे हे चित्रपटाच्या शेवटी उमगते.

चित्रपटात कुणी अभिनय केलाय असे वाटत नाही. सगळे सहज घडत आहे असे वाटते. प्रेम आहे. रोमांस आहे. पण चवीपुरते. थोडासा बोल्ड आहे म्हणून मला तरी ही फॅमिली फिल्म नाही वाटत. अजून एक गोष्ट. गाणी नाही यांत. “अगं! ऐक ना?” मला मोठ्या पडद्यावर बघायचे होते. ते पण नाहीये. बाकी चित्रपट एकदा तरी बघावाच. ८/१०

Evolution and Other Tails


Was it the God or was it the Evolution that took away the tail? If you believe in God, then it is God. Otherwise it’s Charles Darwin. This guy blamed everything on evolution. Surprisingly, much of the world agrees with the theory of evolution. I am skeptical about the theory. Sometimes it makes sense and sometimes it doesn’t. 

Lately, I have stopped believing that Man evolved from apes. I don’t think it’s evolutionary process. I am no scientist and hence I may not be true and may not be able to give proper explanation. But think about it. If Man evolved from apes then why all apes haven’t evolved? Or why aren’t they evolving? They should have evolved to make houses or weapons at least. But they still fight with bare hands. I don’t think they would evolve to dress. I mean, Being naked is very comfortable. Why to lose the comfort? Also, it would be difficult to accommodate the tail. 

After watching Rise of Planet of the Apes and Dawn of Planet of the apes (This one is gem of a movie), Things makes much more sense. It was a virus. We were infected by a virus which made us what we are. That virus enhanced our brain, Weakened our body and took our tail. That virus also injected feelings which are useless chemical reactions and they are the by-product of the evolution. 

Let’s keep emotions aside. Think about the tails. What I would have done with my tail? 
1) I would have used it to nudge 
2) I would have invented new dance moves involving my tail
3) I would have designed my own app named “Tell a tail” 
4) I would have used it to kill mosquitoes, flies and boredom
5) As a whip to be used on pets etc. etc.. 
6) I would have deleted the word tailender.

This is a short list. Let’s limit it to this as some of the rest are naughty ones. 

What would you have done with your tail? 

Think about it.. 
Till then… 
Think Nonsense…