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The New Stuff


There are books and then there books you wish would never end
Before We Visit The Goddess is one such book. The kind of book that makes you sad once it ends, you know that feeling of emptiness when a good book ends, yes exactly that one! You wish the story could continue forever, you're so engrossed in the plot and so absorbed in the characters that you literally find them to be real and part of your daily life. Sabitri, Bela & Tara - how real were they! Hats off to Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni for giving us such gems one after another.

I have been a great admirer of her writing ever since I read Sister Of My Heart and Oleander Girl few years back. I have read almost all of her books now and each book of hers is a masterpiece in itself. Varied plots with intricate story lines, but what I like most about her books is the protagonists. They are someone with whom you can relate to, someone real. Before We Visit The Goddess is also yet another literary treasure by the author that tells us the story of a family over three generations. It's a must read for those who love to read good story around human relationships and emotions.

Here's my quick take on the book:
  • Poignant story line that touches your heart somewhere deep within.
  • Genuine plot that highlights the imperfect yet connected family ties. No unnecessary fictitious perfect-happy-family kind of drama at all.
  • Brilliant characterization, you can almost imagine a Sabitri or Tara living around you, inside you.
  • Powerful writing that actually presents the complexity of human emotions in a very beautiful way.
  • Captivating read, not even once I actually lost interest anywhere in the book. A story spread across three generations and two continents but towards the end, it was like all pieces of a scattered puzzle finally put together.
Overall a book that I strongly recommend, totally worth the time and money. And as always, I will be eagerly waiting for the next book by this author, she is just terrific and brilliant and.... well, for her I think I will actually run short of adjectives :).

This book is available at both amazon and flipkart and I didn't buy a kindle version of this book. I actually bought a hard copy as books like these are meant to be a part of your home library collection :). 

Before we visit the Goodess - Book


There are books and then there books you wish would never end
Before We Visit The Goddess is one such book. The kind of book that makes you sad once it ends, you know that feeling of emptiness when a good book ends, yes exactly that one! You wish the story could continue forever, you're so engrossed in the plot and so absorbed in the characters that you literally find them to be real and part of your daily life. Sabitri, Bela & Tara - how real were they! Hats off to Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni for giving us such gems one after another.

I have been a great admirer of her writing ever since I read Sister Of My Heart and Oleander Girl few years back. I have read almost all of her books now and each book of hers is a masterpiece in itself. Varied plots with intricate story lines, but what I like most about her books is the protagonists. They are someone with whom you can relate to, someone real. Before We Visit The Goddess is also yet another literary treasure by the author that tells us the story of a family over three generations. It's a must read for those who love to read good story around human relationships and emotions.

Here's my quick take on the book:
  • Poignant story line that touches your heart somewhere deep within.
  • Genuine plot that highlights the imperfect yet connected family ties. No unnecessary fictitious perfect-happy-family kind of drama at all.
  • Brilliant characterization, you can almost imagine a Sabitri or Tara living around you, inside you.
  • Powerful writing that actually presents the complexity of human emotions in a very beautiful way.
  • Captivating read, not even once I actually lost interest anywhere in the book. A story spread across three generations and two continents but towards the end, it was like all pieces of a scattered puzzle finally put together.
Overall a book that I strongly recommend, totally worth the time and money. And as always, I will be eagerly waiting for the next book by this author, she is just terrific and brilliant and.... well, for her I think I will actually run short of adjectives :).

This book is available at both amazon and flipkart and I didn't buy a kindle version of this book. I actually bought a hard copy as books like these are meant to be a part of your home library collection :). 



How do you explain that expressing genuine views against some national movements is not equal to being anti-nationalist, but realistic?

How do you explain that not being optimistic is not equal to being pessimistic, but realistic?

How do you explain that not being happy always is not equal to being depressed, but realistic?

How do you explain that not having opinions matching to yours is not equal to being crazy, but real me?

How do you explain that not enjoying large crowds or social gatherings always is not equal to being unsocial, but real me?

How do you explain that not being able to see silver lining in everything is not equal to being negative, but realistic?

Whatever happened to being real!
Whatever happened to being realistic!
Whatever happened to being imperfect! 
Whatever happened to being human!
Whatever happened to being original!
Whatever happened to being you!

Whatever happened to being real?


How do you explain that expressing genuine views against some national movements is not equal to being anti-nationalist, but realistic?

How do you explain that not being optimistic is not equal to being pessimistic, but realistic?

How do you explain that not being happy always is not equal to being depressed, but realistic?

How do you explain that not having opinions matching to yours is not equal to being crazy, but real me?

How do you explain that not enjoying large crowds or social gatherings always is not equal to being unsocial, but real me?

How do you explain that not being able to see silver lining in everything is not equal to being negative, but realistic?

Whatever happened to being real!
Whatever happened to being realistic!
Whatever happened to being imperfect! 
Whatever happened to being human!
Whatever happened to being original!
Whatever happened to being you!




Just finished reading this book with a smile on my face. If your roots are from any small Indian town or you have lived in one during your growing up years, then this book is surely going to bring a smile on your face.

It was quite a pleasant surprise when my childhood friend Rakhi Anand pinged me about her debut novel - Life of Angela and when she mentioned it being based on school life, I was all the more keen to pick it up. And I am glad I grabbed a copy of it as the book reminded me of my growing years in many ways :). Here's my quick take on the book:
  • It's simple & real, no wannabe portrayal of cool, hip student life.
  • Presents the inner turmoil of a fatherless middle class teenager girl beautifully, the pressure on her to do well in academics, get a well paying job so that she can support her family, her struggle and challenges due to her introvert personality - all of these have been presented quite genuinely.
  • Has an important message for students who try to give up life due to academic pressure. Life is much more than just scores in board exams and if you believe in yourself, there is always a beautiful destination waiting for you ahead.
  • Engaging plot presented in a very crisp and easy language.
Overall it's a book that's definitely worth a read. And for a change, it's an Indian fiction that's not on romance at IIT / IIM campus :) or about a girl who is dying to get married just because she has entered in her 30s!

Do give it a try, it's available on Amazon as well as on Flipkart.

Rakhi: Kudos to you for your effort. Wish you good luck for your future books. 

Life of Angela: Book



Just finished reading this book with a smile on my face. If your roots are from any small Indian town or you have lived in one during your growing up years, then this book is surely going to bring a smile on your face.

It was quite a pleasant surprise when my childhood friend Rakhi Anand pinged me about her debut novel - Life of Angela and when she mentioned it being based on school life, I was all the more keen to pick it up. And I am glad I grabbed a copy of it as the book reminded me of my growing years in many ways :). Here's my quick take on the book:
  • It's simple & real, no wannabe portrayal of cool, hip student life.
  • Presents the inner turmoil of a fatherless middle class teenager girl beautifully, the pressure on her to do well in academics, get a well paying job so that she can support her family, her struggle and challenges due to her introvert personality - all of these have been presented quite genuinely.
  • Has an important message for students who try to give up life due to academic pressure. Life is much more than just scores in board exams and if you believe in yourself, there is always a beautiful destination waiting for you ahead.
  • Engaging plot presented in a very crisp and easy language.
Overall it's a book that's definitely worth a read. And for a change, it's an Indian fiction that's not on romance at IIT / IIM campus :) or about a girl who is dying to get married just because she has entered in her 30s!

Do give it a try, it's available on Amazon as well as on Flipkart.

Rakhi: Kudos to you for your effort. Wish you good luck for your future books. 


9 different books on 9 different days! Can there be any better way to celebrate Navratri with kids :)? At least that's how me and my little one are spending his Dusshera vacations. Of course there are lots and lots of unplanned masti, festival special cooking, some TV time and maybe some traveling too but then what's a vacation without some new stories :)?

And stories definitely work for me when it comes to explaining something new to him, be it about our culture or festivals or general day to day things like values or habits. To add to that, with time we have reached a stage now where he himself asks us - which story will you tell me today? This makes my task of curating a list of books that we plan to read during vacations or travel all the more exciting and fun.

So here goes the list of 9 books that I am reading to him this Dusshera break. He loves to know more about Indian Gods and mythology (thanks to his fascination for action & adventure and animated television series like Bal Hanuman or movies like Oh My Friend Ganesha), he somehow is hooked on to them as much as Superheroes or Avengers.  I have already read these books myself,  from his initial excitement and curious eyes I think my four year old is going to enjoy it all. This list is not only specifically on Goddess Durga or Dusshera but also on other characters from Ramayans (after all little readers like variety, isn't it :)?)
  • Tales of Durga by Amar Chitra Katha

When it comes to reading something on mythology, Amar Chitra Katha has to be our default choice, after all it's the publication that fed our generation with lots of interesting content. While the visual taste or preferences of the new generation might have changed but I think when it comes to the vastness of content available with ACK, there is just no comparison. Tales of Durga is yet another interesting offering from ACK that tells the story of incarnation of Durga and her victory on Mahishasur in a crisp and simple way. My son is anyways fond of action stories a lot, so he loved all the fight sequence of Goddess Durga & Mahishasur and her final victory over the demon.
  • Amma, Tell me about Durga Puja by Bhakti Mathur

Just spotted this book on Amazon and somehow loved the cover and the title. Ordered it on impulse and I'm glad I ordered it. Quite a nice book on story of Goddess Durga presented through lively visuals. I especially loved the storytelling style of this book, it highlights the whole concept of Mahalaya to Viajaydashmi in a very interesting way. Look at one of the pictures from the inner pages, the illustrations are nothing less than visual treat for the little ones! 

We totally loved this book and I am planning to surely try more books in "Amma, Tell me about..." series.
  • Festivals of India by Om Books International

Amazing book! It covers the different festivals of India in a very comprehensive way. The descriptions are apt in length to hold the attention of younger kids along with colorful visuals. For Dusshera / Durga Puja, it has three separate chapters - one covering Navratri, second covers Durga Puja & third one is on Dusshera. the Dusshera chapter also interlinks the significance of Goddess Durga in Rama's vitcory over evil. I just read all three of these to my little one :)
  • Rama by Amar Chitra Katha

Another content rich book by Amar Chitra Katha. Presents all aspects of Rama's fourteen years exile, his fight with Ravana and his relationship with different other characters from Ramayana in the form of a visual story. As I said earlier, when it comes to mythology, there is no parallel of Amar Chitra Katha's length and depth of content.
  • Chota Kumbhakarna by Arundhati Venkatesh

It's actually a cute book. Yes cute is the word that will aptly define the visual and the story of Kumbhakarna narrated to the main character in this story Kukku by his father. Now, how can Kumbhakaran be cute! Don't believe it? Check the visuals below. My son just loves this book, we have gone through the pages many times and he doesn't seem to get bored of it. 

This book is available in English too but I picked up a Hindi version as it was the only book left at a book reading session by the author that me & my son had attended earlier this year. And I also consciously wanted to start reading him some Hindi books too.
  • Shiva by Om Books International

While the title reads Shiva but it's actually more of a story around Goddess Shakti and her fight with demon brothers Chanda & Munda. 

This book comes in an interesting shape with rich visuals that easily attracts the attention of younger audience. To add to that, length of the book is such that even my four year old can easily recall the stories page by page.
  • Kumbhakarna by Amar Chitra Katha

Oh yes, another book on Kumbhakarna :). As I said my son loves this character for the luxury of long sleep that Kumbhakaran could afford :). Of course, he knows the connection with Ravan, Lanka etc. This book apart from the sleeping story of the character also focusses on the whole Lanka fight with Rama & his army. Action yet again and here we go, he loved to listen to it. I think the mommy in me thinks my son loves to read these mythology stories because of all these fights and actions scenes in them :).
  • Hanuman by Om Books

Another lovely book for bal hanuman fans like my son. He is fascinated with Hanuman since his toddler days. In fact there was a pahse when his favorite gift used to be only & only "gada". So considering his craze for Hanuman, I knew this book would be totally loved by him. And I was just so right, he loved it. And to add to the charm of the character were those sweet pictures that told us the story from his birth to his part in Ramayana. 
  • Dusshera by Diamond Comics

Yet another book that focuses on victory of good over evil through Ramayana story, Rama's vanvaas, the main fight in Lanka and then Vijayadashami. While the story remains the same but it's amazing to observe kid's excitement when it comes to varied visual representation.  Definitely works for me   when it comes to reinforcing same story in different ways to my son.

So, what are you or your little ones reading this festive season? Do share your recommendations with us in the comment section. And in case you liked this list and would like me to curate some more, drop me a comment or mail and I would love to share what I am reading with my curious little reader :).

Wish you all a great Navratri / Durga Puja & Dusshera! May the Goddess bless you with health and happiness always.

9 books you may like to read to your kids this Dusshera break

9 different books on 9 different days! Can there be any better way to celebrate Navratri with kids :)? At least that's how me and my little one are spending his Dusshera vacations. Of course there are lots and lots of unplanned masti, festival special cooking, some TV time and maybe some traveling too but then what's a vacation without some new stories :)?

And stories definitely work for me when it comes to explaining something new to him, be it about our culture or festivals or general day to day things like values or habits. To add to that, with time we have reached a stage now where he himself asks us - which story will you tell me today? This makes my task of curating a list of books that we plan to read during vacations or travel all the more exciting and fun.

So here goes the list of 9 books that I am reading to him this Dusshera break. He loves to know more about Indian Gods and mythology (thanks to his fascination for action & adventure and animated television series like Bal Hanuman or movies like Oh My Friend Ganesha), he somehow is hooked on to them as much as Superheroes or Avengers.  I have already read these books myself,  from his initial excitement and curious eyes I think my four year old is going to enjoy it all. This list is not only specifically on Goddess Durga or Dusshera but also on other characters from Ramayans (after all little readers like variety, isn't it :)?)
  • Tales of Durga by Amar Chitra Katha

When it comes to reading something on mythology, Amar Chitra Katha has to be our default choice, after all it's the publication that fed our generation with lots of interesting content. While the visual taste or preferences of the new generation might have changed but I think when it comes to the vastness of content available with ACK, there is just no comparison. Tales of Durga is yet another interesting offering from ACK that tells the story of incarnation of Durga and her victory on Mahishasur in a crisp and simple way. My son is anyways fond of action stories a lot, so he loved all the fight sequence of Goddess Durga & Mahishasur and her final victory over the demon.
  • Amma, Tell me about Durga Puja by Bhakti Mathur

Just spotted this book on Amazon and somehow loved the cover and the title. Ordered it on impulse and I'm glad I ordered it. Quite a nice book on story of Goddess Durga presented through lively visuals. I especially loved the storytelling style of this book, it highlights the whole concept of Mahalaya to Viajaydashmi in a very interesting way. Look at one of the pictures from the inner pages, the illustrations are nothing less than visual treat for the little ones! 

We totally loved this book and I am planning to surely try more books in "Amma, Tell me about..." series.
  • Festivals of India by Om Books International

Amazing book! It covers the different festivals of India in a very comprehensive way. The descriptions are apt in length to hold the attention of younger kids along with colorful visuals. For Dusshera / Durga Puja, it has three separate chapters - one covering Navratri, second covers Durga Puja & third one is on Dusshera. the Dusshera chapter also interlinks the significance of Goddess Durga in Rama's vitcory over evil. I just read all three of these to my little one :)
  • Rama by Amar Chitra Katha

Another content rich book by Amar Chitra Katha. Presents all aspects of Rama's fourteen years exile, his fight with Ravana and his relationship with different other characters from Ramayana in the form of a visual story. As I said earlier, when it comes to mythology, there is no parallel of Amar Chitra Katha's length and depth of content.
  • Chota Kumbhakarna by Arundhati Venkatesh

It's actually a cute book. Yes cute is the word that will aptly define the visual and the story of Kumbhakarna narrated to the main character in this story Kukku by his father. Now, how can Kumbhakaran be cute! Don't believe it? Check the visuals below. My son just loves this book, we have gone through the pages many times and he doesn't seem to get bored of it. 

This book is available in English too but I picked up a Hindi version as it was the only book left at a book reading session by the author that me & my son had attended earlier this year. And I also consciously wanted to start reading him some Hindi books too.
  • Shiva by Om Books International

While the title reads Shiva but it's actually more of a story around Goddess Shakti and her fight with demon brothers Chanda & Munda. 

This book comes in an interesting shape with rich visuals that easily attracts the attention of younger audience. To add to that, length of the book is such that even my four year old can easily recall the stories page by page.
  • Kumbhakarna by Amar Chitra Katha

Oh yes, another book on Kumbhakarna :). As I said my son loves this character for the luxury of long sleep that Kumbhakaran could afford :). Of course, he knows the connection with Ravan, Lanka etc. This book apart from the sleeping story of the character also focusses on the whole Lanka fight with Rama & his army. Action yet again and here we go, he loved to listen to it. I think the mommy in me thinks my son loves to read these mythology stories because of all these fights and actions scenes in them :).
  • Hanuman by Om Books

Another lovely book for bal hanuman fans like my son. He is fascinated with Hanuman since his toddler days. In fact there was a pahse when his favorite gift used to be only & only "gada". So considering his craze for Hanuman, I knew this book would be totally loved by him. And I was just so right, he loved it. And to add to the charm of the character were those sweet pictures that told us the story from his birth to his part in Ramayana. 
  • Dusshera by Diamond Comics

Yet another book that focuses on victory of good over evil through Ramayana story, Rama's vanvaas, the main fight in Lanka and then Vijayadashami. While the story remains the same but it's amazing to observe kid's excitement when it comes to varied visual representation.  Definitely works for me   when it comes to reinforcing same story in different ways to my son.

So, what are you or your little ones reading this festive season? Do share your recommendations with us in the comment section. And in case you liked this list and would like me to curate some more, drop me a comment or mail and I would love to share what I am reading with my curious little reader :).

Wish you all a great Navratri / Durga Puja & Dusshera! May the Goddess bless you with health and happiness always.


9 different books on 9 different days! Can there be any better way to celebrate Navratri with kids :)? At least that's how me and my little one are spending his Dusshera vacations. Of course there are lots and lots of unplanned masti, festival special cooking, some TV time and maybe some traveling too but then what's a vacation without some new stories :)?

And stories definitely work for me when it comes to explaining something new to him, be it about our culture or festivals or general day to day things like values or habits. To add to that, with time we have reached a stage now where he himself asks us - which story will you tell me today? This makes my task of curating a list of books that we plan to read during vacations or travel all the more exciting and fun.

So here goes the list of 9 books that I am reading to him this Dusshera break. He loves to know more about Indian Gods and mythology (thanks to his fascination for action & adventure and animated television series like Bal Hanuman or movies like Oh My Friend Ganesha), he somehow is hooked on to them as much as Superheroes or Avengers.  I have already read these books myself,  from his initial excitement and curious eyes I think my four year old is going to enjoy it all. This list is not only specifically on Goddess Durga or Dusshera but also on other characters from Ramayans (after all little readers like variety, isn't it :)?)
  • Tales of Durga by Amar Chitra Katha

When it comes to reading something on mythology, Amar Chitra Katha has to be our default choice, after all it's the publication that fed our generation with lots of interesting content. While the visual taste or preferences of the new generation might have changed but I think when it comes to the vastness of content available with ACK, there is just no comparison. Tales of Durga is yet another interesting offering from ACK that tells the story of incarnation of Durga and her victory on Mahishasur in a crisp and simple way. My son is anyways fond of action stories a lot, so he loved all the fight sequence of Goddess Durga & Mahishasur and her final victory over the demon.
  • Amma, Tell me about Durga Puja by Bhakti Mathur

Just spotted this book on Amazon and somehow loved the cover and the title. Ordered it on impulse and I'm glad I ordered it. Quite a nice book on story of Goddess Durga presented through lively visuals. I especially loved the storytelling style of this book, it highlights the whole concept of Mahalaya to Viajaydashmi in a very interesting way. Look at one of the pictures from the inner pages, the illustrations are nothing less than visual treat for the little ones! 

We totally loved this book and I am planning to surely try more books in "Amma, Tell me about..." series.
  • Festivals of India by Om Books International

Amazing book! It covers the different festivals of India in a very comprehensive way. The descriptions are apt in length to hold the attention of younger kids along with colorful visuals. For Dusshera / Durga Puja, it has three separate chapters - one covering Navratri, second covers Durga Puja & third one is on Dusshera. the Dusshera chapter also interlinks the significance of Goddess Durga in Rama's vitcory over evil. I just read all three of these to my little one :)
  • Rama by Amar Chitra Katha

Another content rich book by Amar Chitra Katha. Presents all aspects of Rama's fourteen years exile, his fight with Ravana and his relationship with different other characters from Ramayana in the form of a visual story. As I said earlier, when it comes to mythology, there is no parallel of Amar Chitra Katha's length and depth of content.
  • Chota Kumbhakarna by Arundhati Venkatesh

It's actually a cute book. Yes cute is the word that will aptly define the visual and the story of Kumbhakarna narrated to the main character in this story Kukku by his father. Now, how can Kumbhakaran be cute! Don't believe it? Check the visuals below. My son just loves this book, we have gone through the pages many times and he doesn't seem to get bored of it. 

This book is available in English too but I picked up a Hindi version as it was the only book left at a book reading session by the author that me & my son had attended earlier this year. And I also consciously wanted to start reading him some Hindi books too.
  • Shiva by Om Books International

While the title reads Shiva but it's actually more of a story around Goddess Shakti and her fight with demon brothers Chanda & Munda. 

This book comes in an interesting shape with rich visuals that easily attracts the attention of younger audience. To add to that, length of the book is such that even my four year old can easily recall the stories page by page.
  • Kumbhakarna by Amar Chitra Katha

Oh yes, another book on Kumbhakarna :). As I said my son loves this character for the luxury of long sleep that Kumbhakaran could afford :). Of course, he knows the connection with Ravan, Lanka etc. This book apart from the sleeping story of the character also focusses on the whole Lanka fight with Rama & his army. Action yet again and here we go, he loved to listen to it. I think the mommy in me thinks my son loves to read these mythology stories because of all these fights and actions scenes in them :).
  • Hanuman by Om Books

Another lovely book for bal hanuman fans like my son. He is fascinated with Hanuman since his toddler days. In fact there was a pahse when his favorite gift used to be only & only "gada". So considering his craze for Hanuman, I knew this book would be totally loved by him. And I was just so right, he loved it. And to add to the charm of the character were those sweet pictures that told us the story from his birth to his part in Ramayana. 
  • Dusshera by Diamond Comics

Yet another book that focuses on victory of good over evil through Ramayana story, Rama's vanvaas, the main fight in Lanka and then Vijayadashami. While the story remains the same but it's amazing to observe kid's excitement when it comes to varied visual representation.  Definitely works for me   when it comes to reinforcing same story in different ways to my son.

So, what are you or your little ones reading this festive season? Do share your recommendations with us in the comment section. And in case you liked this list and would like me to curate some more, drop me a comment or mail and I would love to share what I am reading my curious little reader :).

Wish you all a great Navratri / Durga Puja & Dusshera! May the Goddess bless you with health and happiness always.

9 books you may like to read to your kids this Dusshera break

9 different books on 9 different days! Can there be any better way to celebrate Navratri with kids :)? At least that's how me and my little one are spending his Dusshera vacations. Of course there are lots and lots of unplanned masti, festival special cooking, some TV time and maybe some traveling too but then what's a vacation without some new stories :)?

And stories definitely work for me when it comes to explaining something new to him, be it about our culture or festivals or general day to day things like values or habits. To add to that, with time we have reached a stage now where he himself asks us - which story will you tell me today? This makes my task of curating a list of books that we plan to read during vacations or travel all the more exciting and fun.

So here goes the list of 9 books that I am reading to him this Dusshera break. He loves to know more about Indian Gods and mythology (thanks to his fascination for action & adventure and animated television series like Bal Hanuman or movies like Oh My Friend Ganesha), he somehow is hooked on to them as much as Superheroes or Avengers.  I have already read these books myself,  from his initial excitement and curious eyes I think my four year old is going to enjoy it all. This list is not only specifically on Goddess Durga or Dusshera but also on other characters from Ramayans (after all little readers like variety, isn't it :)?)
  • Tales of Durga by Amar Chitra Katha

When it comes to reading something on mythology, Amar Chitra Katha has to be our default choice, after all it's the publication that fed our generation with lots of interesting content. While the visual taste or preferences of the new generation might have changed but I think when it comes to the vastness of content available with ACK, there is just no comparison. Tales of Durga is yet another interesting offering from ACK that tells the story of incarnation of Durga and her victory on Mahishasur in a crisp and simple way. My son is anyways fond of action stories a lot, so he loved all the fight sequence of Goddess Durga & Mahishasur and her final victory over the demon.
  • Amma, Tell me about Durga Puja by Bhakti Mathur

Just spotted this book on Amazon and somehow loved the cover and the title. Ordered it on impulse and I'm glad I ordered it. Quite a nice book on story of Goddess Durga presented through lively visuals. I especially loved the storytelling style of this book, it highlights the whole concept of Mahalaya to Viajaydashmi in a very interesting way. Look at one of the pictures from the inner pages, the illustrations are nothing less than visual treat for the little ones! 

We totally loved this book and I am planning to surely try more books in "Amma, Tell me about..." series.
  • Festivals of India by Om Books International

Amazing book! It covers the different festivals of India in a very comprehensive way. The descriptions are apt in length to hold the attention of younger kids along with colorful visuals. For Dusshera / Durga Puja, it has three separate chapters - one covering Navratri, second covers Durga Puja & third one is on Dusshera. the Dusshera chapter also interlinks the significance of Goddess Durga in Rama's vitcory over evil. I just read all three of these to my little one :)
  • Rama by Amar Chitra Katha

Another content rich book by Amar Chitra Katha. Presents all aspects of Rama's fourteen years exile, his fight with Ravana and his relationship with different other characters from Ramayana in the form of a visual story. As I said earlier, when it comes to mythology, there is no parallel of Amar Chitra Katha's length and depth of content.
  • Chota Kumbhakarna by Arundhati Venkatesh

It's actually a cute book. Yes cute is the word that will aptly define the visual and the story of Kumbhakarna narrated to the main character in this story Kukku by his father. Now, how can Kumbhakaran be cute! Don't believe it? Check the visuals below. My son just loves this book, we have gone through the pages many times and he doesn't seem to get bored of it. 

This book is available in English too but I picked up a Hindi version as it was the only book left at a book reading session by the author that me & my son had attended earlier this year. And I also consciously wanted to start reading him some Hindi books too.
  • Shiva by Om Books International

While the title reads Shiva but it's actually more of a story around Goddess Shakti and her fight with demon brothers Chanda & Munda. 

This book comes in an interesting shape with rich visuals that easily attracts the attention of younger audience. To add to that, length of the book is such that even my four year old can easily recall the stories page by page.
  • Kumbhakarna by Amar Chitra Katha

Oh yes, another book on Kumbhakarna :). As I said my son loves this character for the luxury of long sleep that Kumbhakaran could afford :). Of course, he knows the connection with Ravan, Lanka etc. This book apart from the sleeping story of the character also focusses on the whole Lanka fight with Rama & his army. Action yet again and here we go, he loved to listen to it. I think the mommy in me thinks my son loves to read these mythology stories because of all these fights and actions scenes in them :).
  • Hanuman by Om Books

Another lovely book for bal hanuman fans like my son. He is fascinated with Hanuman since his toddler days. In fact there was a pahse when his favorite gift used to be only & only "gada". So considering his craze for Hanuman, I knew this book would be totally loved by him. And I was just so right, he loved it. And to add to the charm of the character were those sweet pictures that told us the story from his birth to his part in Ramayana. 
  • Dusshera by Diamond Comics

Yet another book that focuses on victory of good over evil through Ramayana story, Rama's vanvaas, the main fight in Lanka and then Vijayadashami. While the story remains the same but it's amazing to observe kid's excitement when it comes to varied visual representation.  Definitely works for me   when it comes to reinforcing same story in different ways to my son.

So, what are you or your little ones reading this festive season? Do share your recommendations with us in the comment section. And in case you liked this list and would like me to curate some more, drop me a comment or mail and I would love to share what I am reading my curious little reader :).

Wish you all a great Navratri / Durga Puja & Dusshera! May the Goddess bless you with health and happiness always.



I just so agree to this! Something that I have always believed in. Something that has always led me to some path, may not necessarily  to the preferred destination but at least helped me move ahead.

And yet again I am at roads where I am not getting answers to what next in life but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yet again I am at a phase where fate seems to be really cruel but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yet again I am in a situation where negativity seems to be dominant all around but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yet again I am in a plight where helplessness is overpowering me but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yet again I am in a state where I want to quit fighting with adversities, stop moving ahead but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yes, sometimes acceptance is the only option you have and moving ahead is the best thing you can do - without thinking too much on what, why and how. 

And I thought a lot about whether to make this post live or not. Does it communicate my weaker side? Does it communicate my emotional turbulence? Well, heck yes, even if it does, so what! For once I want to write posts that communicate the real state of me. After all, as I always say we are human beings who are supposed to have different shades of life, not sure why in today's environment we are expected to behave like hard coded programmed robots exhibiting only positivism and optimism and happiness (read projected happiness in  virtual world) and blah and blah and some more blah.

Yet again I have learned, any shade of life is ok as long as we work towards getting out of it and perhaps the only way to come out of any state is to move ahead!

Just Keep Moving Ahead


I just so agree to this! Something that I have always believed in. Something that has always led me to some path, may not necessarily  to the preferred destination but at least helped me move ahead.

And yet again I am at roads where I am not getting answers to what next in life but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yet again I am at a phase where fate seems to be really cruel but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yet again I am in a situation where negativity seems to be dominant all around but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yet again I am in a plight where helplessness is overpowering me but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yet again I am in a state where I want to quit fighting with adversities, stop moving ahead but all I know from my past experience is that - I must keep moving ahead!

Yes, sometimes acceptance is the only option you have and moving ahead is the best thing you can do - without thinking too much on what, why and how. 

And I thought a lot about whether to make this post live or not. Does it communicate my weaker side? Does it communicate my emotional turbulence? Well, heck yes, even if it does, so what! For once I want to write posts that communicate the real state of me. After all, as I always say we are human beings who are supposed to have different shades of life, not sure why in today's environment we are expected to behave like hard coded programmed robots exhibiting only positivism and optimism and happiness (read projected happiness in  virtual world) and blah and blah and some more blah.

Yet again I have learned, any shade of life is ok as long as we work towards getting out of it and perhaps the only way to come out of any state is to move ahead!


Just finished yet another book by an Indian author and I am wondering what it was actually! Calling it a book or story would be such a slur as it was nothing but nonsense after nonsense printed  in black & white. And I also wonder why do I even waste my time in completing such shit pieces of work, damn this very irritating habit of mine that doesn't let me leave things half way. But what's worse is to realize that this book came highly recommended in most of the reading sites and I wonder how? Well, book marketing has surely picked up in India, isn't it? Incentivize few reviewers, spend some marketing money and voila you have words after words spread across media in favor of some crap piece of work. Being a marketer as well as blogger, I am also aware of the dynamics of how it works. There is no harm in marketing any good product, anything new needs a bit of push but unfortunately I think in case of something as precious as books, going this far is really irking me a lot now.

My words might be sounding rude but I am actually quite disappointed with my last 5 reads. If you all remember, I have been a big supporter of Indian fiction and have always proudly mentioned my preferences for Indian stories and authors but I think it's time for me to change my preferences now. Whether you believe it or not, last few of my reads have all been centered around either of the two themes - a 30 something career oriented girl desperately trying to get hooked on to a man, takes all possible measures to woo any / all kind of men and finally settles down with the one who has money and all. In the last book that I read, the main character slept with 7 men in a period of 6 months, lost her job, but is perfectly fine to lose her job as long as she finds a good catch (read man). Now in which city / culture in India, unmarried women date & sleep with 7 men in 6 months? After few pages, I was feeling sick of reading that book and being a woman felt pathetic to realize that the book was written by a woman only! All of it look such desperate, forced projection of so called "modern", "new-generation" Indian women. And the second theme, wait... do I need to tell you about the second theme? It's the same - a boy at IIT meets a girl and it's love at first sight, blah blah & some more blah. Uffff, I know I am picking up wrong books but then all these have been picked after recommendations on Twitter, Goodreads etc. I definitely was looking for some light reads or romantic fiction but in the name of comedy or romance, all I could get my hands on was racy sex, almost porn content and comedies which were disgusting to the core.

What happened to the good writers and stories? What happened to healthy comedies? And what happened to pleasant love stories? With a heavy heart I think I have decided to not read any Indian author book for next few months except the mythology ones. I agree, mythological stories these days are quite well written and engaging for sure. But for other genre, I am going to stick to non-Indian writers for now . I am also thinking of trying my luck with Hindi Classics. I have really not read much of Hindi literature and I think it's time for me to delve into some old gems.

If I find something really good, I will get back to you with my review of the same. Until then, if you have any recommendation for good  fiction, do let me know of the same. By the way, which site do you refer to for book recommendations these days? Any pointers please? Any site which is not heavily influenced by paid media yet? Look forward to your suggestions please :)

Where to find good book recommendations?

Just finished yet another book by an Indian author and I am wondering what it was actually! Calling it a book or story would be such a slur as it was nothing but nonsense after nonsense printed  in black & white. And I also wonder why do I even waste my time in completing such shit pieces of work, damn this very irritating habit of mine that doesn't let me leave things half way. But what's worse is to realize that this book came highly recommended in most of the reading sites and I wonder how? Well, book marketing has surely picked up in India, isn't it? Incentivize few reviewers, spend some marketing money and voila you have words after words spread across media in favor of some crap piece of work. Being a marketer as well as blogger, I am also aware of the dynamics of how it works. There is no harm in marketing any good product, anything new needs a bit of push but unfortunately I think in case of something as precious as books, going this far is really irking me a lot now.

My words might be sounding rude but I am actually quite disappointed with my last 5 reads. If you all remember, I have been a big supporter of Indian fiction and have always proudly mentioned my preferences for Indian stories and authors but I think it's time for me to change my preferences now. Whether you believe it or not, last few of my reads have all been centered around either of the two themes - a 30 something career oriented girl desperately trying to get hooked on to a man, takes all possible measures to woo any / all kind of men and finally settles down with the one who has money and all. In the last book that I read, the main character slept with 7 men in a period of 6 months, lost her job, but is perfectly fine to lose her job as long as she finds a good catch (read man). Now in which city / culture in India, unmarried women date & sleep with 7 men in 6 months? After few pages, I was feeling sick of reading that book and being a woman felt pathetic to realize that the book was written by a woman only! All of it look such desperate, forced projection of so called "modern", "new-generation" Indian women. And the second theme, wait... do I need to tell you about the second theme? It's the same - a boy at IIT meets a girl and it's love at first sight, blah blah & some more blah. Uffff, I know I am picking up wrong books but then all these have been picked after recommendations on Twitter, Goodreads etc. I definitely was looking for some light reads or romantic fiction but in the name of comedy or romance, all I could get my hands on was racy sex, almost porn content and comedies which were disgusting to the core.

What happened to the good writers and stories? What happened to healthy comedies? And what happened to pleasant love stories? With a heavy heart I think I have decided to not read any Indian author book for next few months except the mythology ones. I agree, mythological stories these days are quite well written and engaging for sure. But for other genre, I am going to stick to non-Indian writers for now . I am also thinking of trying my luck with Hindi Classics. I have really not read much of Hindi literature and I think it's time for me to delve into some old gems.

If I find something really good, I will get back to you with my review of the same. Until then, if you have any recommendation for good  fiction, do let me know of the same. By the way, which site do you refer to for book recommendations these days? Any pointers please? Any site which is not heavily influenced by paid media yet? Look forward to your suggestions please :)



Hello World! I think it's an apt title for a post that appears on this space after a gap of almost an year. Sigh! Writing is one love that I don't want to give up on but somehow have been badly struggling to get back to. Not that I haven't yearned or tried to get back to my blogs, in fact the number of times I have tried to write a post but have not been able to complete... (another sigh), innumerable! Though I could manage to write couple of posts on medium but then after initial few, a long block again. Blame it on my super crazy schedule now, a demanding child, demanding job and hundreds of other demands in this or that aspect of life. I at times wonder if I will ever get some quiet moments for myself.

I also wonder if it would be a better idea to get back to a diary instead of word docs or online drafts. The moment you get connected to a digital system, it's simply mind numbing. The number of tabs opened on your laptop or the number of notifications that are beeping on your phone - I at times wonder do I really need so many information about anyone, everyone, anything and everything. Many a times I also take a conscious effort to turn off internet and start writing few words but then damn the real life distractions that are unavoidable now.

But I definitely want to get back to writing again and this time I am trying really hard. Have also thought of adopting some suggestions by others to find some me-time. I really, really need to, if not for anything else but for my own peace of mind and for a better me. Let's see if I am able to and if I can, I will surely get back to you with my feedback on what worked for me. Until then if you have any suggestions for me, do drop me a note in comment section below.  (Ha ha, high hopes of getting comments when not even sure if anyone of you still come here :))


Look forward to more conversation and interaction with you once again! 

Hello World!


Hello World! I think it's an apt title for a post that appears on this space after a gap of almost an year. Sigh! Writing is one love that I don't want to give up on but somehow have been badly struggling to get back to. Not that I haven't yearned or tried to get back to my blogs, in fact the number of times I have tried to write a post but have not been able to complete... (another sigh), innumerable! Though I could manage to write couple of posts on medium but then after initial few, a long block again. Blame it on my super crazy schedule now, a demanding child, demanding job and hundreds of other demands in this or that aspect of life. I at times wonder if I will ever get some quiet moments for myself.

I also wonder if it would be a better idea to get back to a diary instead of word docs or online drafts. The moment you get connected to a digital system, it's simply mind numbing. The number of tabs opened on your laptop or the number of notifications that are beeping on your phone - I at times wonder do I really need so many information about anyone, everyone, anything and everything. Many a times I also take a conscious effort to turn off internet and start writing few words but then damn the real life distractions that are unavoidable now.

But I definitely want to get back to writing again and this time I am trying really hard. Have also thought of adopting some suggestions by others to find some me-time. I really, really need to, if not for anything else but for my own peace of mind and for a better me. Let's see if I am able to and if I can, I will surely get back to you with my feedback on what worked for me. Until then if you have any suggestions for me, do drop me a note in comment section below.  (Ha ha, high hopes of getting comments when not even sure if anyone of you still come here :))


Look forward to more conversation and interaction with you once again! 


Mentioned it earlier, saying it again – one Indian publishing house that keeps on bettering itself with every new release is FunOkPlease. Not to follow the rut, this team has surely managed to create its own niche in children's book industry. And I get surprised at their choice of story lines - distinct and pertinent always! Be it Toto the Auto or Alphabet Dress-Up or Brown Like Dosas Samosa and Sticky Chikki, each one is truly a gem in itself.  I got this book few weeks back and the gorgeous cover design actually brought a smile on my face. In a world that's obsessed with 'fair & lovely', it was good to see the main character of the story 'brown & bold'.  Many, I mean really many reasons why I loved this book but here are top 5 on why your child should definitely read it:
  • It's very relevant to Indian culture where we have varied skin tones but somehow the epitome of beauty has always been attributed to the fair ones. This obsession for fairness is so deeply ingrained in our society that at times I get shocked to observe it in younger girls too. In a world biased towards the lighter tone, here comes Samaira who is happy and content with her brown skin tone and would not exchange it with whiter shade for anything. So proud of you Samaira, may the youngsters understand the deep message that you're trying to communicate!
  • Like all other FunOkPlease books, its visually very rich but must say that this has additional charm as compared to the earlier ones. Maybe it's the fairy land or those yum food, the illustrations in this books are sure to grab attention of your little ones.
  • Presentation is excellent, I mean what better way to communicate the beauty of brown skin to kids than associating it with chocolate or milkshake :)? Such an important message but presented in such a fun way.
  • Its dreamy yet different, no stereotyping of fairies coming to save your lives, rather Samaira fighting it out, expressing her views in her own unique way.
  • Simple and easy to understand. Whether you read it out to younger kids or let the elder ones read on your own, the language is very kid friendly and engaging.
Still need more reasons? Ok, so here goes the most important one - it's from the house of FunOkPlease, an Indian publishing house that's trying to come out with quality content for Indian kids. Lets support them by reading their books and spreading the word if you like their content. I as a mother surely love their books. My 3 year old now knows the story of it page by page :). In fact, last weekend during one of my story telling sessions in a neighburhood library, I actually narrated this book to kids. Later, two moms came to me and asked who is the author and where can they buy this book? One of them mentioned that her daughter doesn't like to go out and play basket ball as she thinks it will "tan" her skin. And that girl is not more than 10 years old, yes just 10 :(.
More power to Samaira and her likes, may they remain as beautiful and unique always!
Reading out Brown Like Dosa in a story telling event in my neighborhood library

                                                              
The book is available for online purchase at amazon and flipkart

5 reasons why your child should read Brown Like Dosas Samosa and Sticky Chikki


Mentioned it earlier, saying it again – one Indian publishing house that keeps on bettering itself with every new release is FunOkPlease. Not to follow the rut, this team has surely managed to create its own niche in children's book industry. And I get surprised at their choice of story lines - distinct and pertinent always! Be it Toto the Auto or Alphabet Dress-Up or Brown Like Dosas Samosa and Sticky Chikki, each one is truly a gem in itself.  I got this book few weeks back and the gorgeous cover design actually brought a smile on my face. In a world that's obsessed with 'fair & lovely', it was good to see the main character of the story 'brown & bold'.  Many, I mean really many reasons why I loved this book but here are top 5 on why your child should definitely read it:
  • It's very relevant to Indian culture where we have varied skin tones but somehow the epitome of beauty has always been attributed to the fair ones. This obsession for fairness is so deeply ingrained in our society that at times I get shocked to observe it in younger girls too. In a world biased towards the lighter tone, here comes Samaira who is happy and content with her brown skin tone and would not exchange it with whiter shade for anything. So proud of you Samaira, may the youngsters understand the deep message that you're trying to communicate!
  • Like all other FunOkPlease books, its visually very rich but must say that this has additional charm as compared to the earlier ones. Maybe it's the fairy land or those yum food, the illustrations in this books are sure to grab attention of your little ones.
  • Presentation is excellent, I mean what better way to communicate the beauty of brown skin to kids than associating it with chocolate or milkshake :)? Such an important message but presented in such a fun way.
  • Its dreamy yet different, no stereotyping of fairies coming to save your lives, rather Samaira fighting it out, expressing her views in her own unique way.
  • Simple and easy to understand. Whether you read it out to younger kids or let the elder ones read on your own, the language is very kid friendly and engaging.
Still need more reasons? Ok, so here goes the most important one - it's from the house of FunOkPlease, an Indian publishing house that's trying to come out with quality content for Indian kids. Lets support them by reading their books and spreading the word if you like their content. I as a mother surely love their books. My 3 year old now knows the story of it page by page :). In fact, last weekend during one of my story telling sessions in a neighburhood library, I actually narrated this book to kids. Later, two moms came to me and asked who is the author and where can they buy this book? One of them mentioned that her daughter doesn't like to go out and play basket ball as she thinks it will "tan" her skin. And that girl is not more than 10 years old, yes just 10 :(.
More power to Samaira and her likes, may they remain as beautiful and unique always!
Reading out Brown Like Dosa in a story telling event in my neighborhood library

                                                              
The book is available for online purchase at amazon and flipkart

Just chanced upon this video by Horlicks and within few minutes I ended up watching it multiple times. That’s the power of great content I think, more on that on my marketing blog soon. But coming back to my love for this video – it was actually relatable, totally relatable to me and full of nostalgia. It reminded me of those childhood days, full of hardships, struggles, adversities, yet full of optimism, dreams and aspirations to look forward to. Thanks to our pillar of strength – my mom who was always there like a shining star guiding us to move ahead even if it was pitch dark many a times.

Moms are magical. Isn’t it? Not that I don’t have my share of fights with her on many whats and whys and whatevers but still I think a supportive mom is all you need to make it in life. As my close acquaintances tell me – I was always ambitious, a girl from a very small town but with very big dreams, used to put in honest & sincere effort in everything I did with a hope that someday I will make it big. Many in my family used to scold my mom to not support a daughter’s wish so much, to not let me have a thinking horizon of my own, but she did. Even if she didn’t know how to support, she never stopped me from dreaming big.  Now if I think of it, she actually didn’t have any resource to support me, nor had she got the knowledge or background to provide right guidance to me. Yet she was always there, pillaring whatever I wanted to do with just two lines – “you can do it” and “don’t worry, I am there”. Just two lines – one for faith and one for reassurance were sufficient for me to keep moving ahead. At times I wonder if any money or luxuries in life can ever be as precious as those simple childhood days? I still smile when I think of those days, sometimes a pleasant smile and sometimes a teary-eyed smile :).

In case you haven’t seen this video yet, do check it out:

BTW, which one was your favorite moment out of it? Mine – the scene where the mom is dropping the bulb for her daughter’s studies. I still remember the way mom used to save candles & kerosene for lamps so that I could finish my studies at night. Oh yes, electricity was a rarity at that place and at that time :)

**Nope, this is not at all a plugged post by Horlicks guys, I was genuinely moved by this #LoveYouMaa video so much that I decided to write a post on it. Power of great content, you see!

Have you watched this?

Just chanced upon this video by Horlicks and within few minutes I ended up watching it multiple times. That’s the power of great content I think, more on that on my marketing blog soon. But coming back to my love for this video – it was actually relatable, totally relatable to me and full of nostalgia. It reminded me of those childhood days, full of hardships, struggles, adversities, yet full of optimism, dreams and aspirations to look forward to. Thanks to our pillar of strength – my mom who was always there like a shining star guiding us to move ahead even if it was pitch dark many a times.

Moms are magical. Isn’t it? Not that I don’t have my share of fights with her on many whats and whys and whatevers but still I think a supportive mom is all you need to make it in life. As my close acquaintances tell me – I was always ambitious, a girl from a very small town but with very big dreams, used to put in honest & sincere effort in everything I did with a hope that someday I will make it big. Many in my family used to scold my mom to not support a daughter’s wish so much, to not let me have a thinking horizon of my own, but she did. Even if she didn’t know how to support, she never stopped me from dreaming big.  Now if I think of it, she actually didn’t have any resource to support me, nor had she got the knowledge or background to provide right guidance to me. Yet she was always there, pillaring whatever I wanted to do with just two lines – “you can do it” and “don’t worry, I am there”. Just two lines – one for faith and one for reassurance were sufficient for me to keep moving ahead. At times I wonder if any money or luxuries in life can ever be as precious as those simple childhood days? I still smile when I think of those days, sometimes a pleasant smile and sometimes a teary-eyed smile :).

In case you haven’t seen this video yet, do check it out:

BTW, which one was your favorite moment out of it? Mine – the scene where the mom is dropping the bulb for her daughter’s studies. I still remember the way mom used to save candles & kerosene for lamps so that I could finish my studies at night. Oh yes, electricity was a rarity at that place and at that time :)

**Nope, this is not at all a plugged post by Horlicks guys, I was genuinely moved by this #LoveYouMaa video so much that I decided to write a post on it. Power of great content, you see!

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