Friday, March 29, 2013


Okay, I don't know where to start from. There is something really creepy going on with me these days. It keeps hovering around me, always. And just when I think it's gone, BOOM it makes it's presence felt again. I don't know how it got to me. I don't know for how long it's going to be there with me. I don't know how to get rid of it. It's just there with me, always, even when I'm all alone.

Who - Don't know; Can't be seen
Why - Not known
When - Anytime 
Where - Everywhere
Till when - Looks like forever

It has now reached to such a level, that I'm talking about it here also. It left me with no options. I mean, literally, anywhere and everywhere I have to bear with it. It wasn't like this before. I'm seeing more of it these days, more than ever before. 

Oh, you look confused? Wait, let me show you something.

For those who don't know, I'm second from right.

This is one of my photos taken last year. I'm the guy third from left. Yeah, the same guy who looks like he is constipated, and has seen something really disturbing and is agitated to god-knows-what-extent. 
It's this jinx I'm talking of - a camera. I don't know what happens to me when a camera sees me. I mean, just look at the picture, anyone would suggest I'm not mentally fit to live in this world with that photo. 
And mind you this is not once-a-time thing, it happens every single time, not matter what the place is, what time of day is, or when that street dog pooped. Every single time.

And what am I doing here? Looking at his arm pits? What a timing!

Is it me or the camera angle?

*No Comments*

Why is his hand higher than mine?

I mean I get caught in the most randomest of my expressions.

Just when I thought, everything is perfect, the location, the pose, guess what? The camera refused to behave properly!

And just when I was really close in getting a good group photograph, BAMB! Someone comes infront of me, just before that click!

Sometimes it's the expression, sometimes it's someone else. This time it's the light!

What more? I have really cool friends who think they can take this to the next level! 

<< Well, actually I don't mind that. Cause that in a way makes me look less-bad >>

But hey, I wasn't like this since the beginning.

Yeah right, that's me too! The same me who now looks like he's always constipated!

And for those who know me well, would know that in the recent times the camera has been kind to me only once, and that that very picture has the "privalage" of being my display pic for, say, some past 4-5 years. 

I simply don't understand what kind of bad karma one has to do to piss off a camera.

But one thing is for sure, the camera jinx is gonna have a tough time fighting with me. Cause I won't let loose this early. I'll give a good fight! *evil laugh*

Or all I need is a good photographer?

Anyway, I'll let you guys leave while me and my monkey ponder upon our next move to tackle this jinx!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Review: Love, Peace & Happiness

Love, Peace & Happiness: What more can you want?
Stories surround us. Stories about people like us who make difficult and often complex choices that sometimes astound us. You must have come across some people in your own life who closely resemble the characters in these stories. Maybe you have gone through trying moments in your life too.

For instance, have you ever been bugged enough with your partner to want to leave? Have you ever had to choose between love and money? Have you ever had to compete with your partner? Have you ever felt that your family weighs you down when it comes to choosing your partner?

At times like these, haven't you wished that things happened differently and that you could change how they ended?

Now you will control how the stories in this book end.

Each story centers on the life of an urban middle class character caught in a set of circumstances beyond his or her control. A Hindu girl living in with a Muslim boy is suddenly in the glare of global media in a reality TV show, a divorced cynical man faces the prospect of committing himself to a prostitute, a highly talented small town girl must choose between life and death. All must resolve the conflicts within their beliefs.

Read the way the stories end in the book, but if you don't agree with the ending, visit the website for alternate endings.

If you don't like the way the stories end there either, write your own, and if your ending is selected, see it print in the next print run with your name in the acknowledgement.

Hoping to change the world, one story at a time...

About the author:
Rituraj Verma

Rituraj Verma started his career as a mechanical engineer having cleared the IIT JEE as a fluke. He pushed his luck further and by another fluke, managed to get into Tulane University, New Orleans, for this MBA. Naturally, he switched tracks to FMCG, sales, retail, real estate, and then finally, consulting. He met his wife, Smriti, at the Indian Railways Staff College in Baroda and has always claimed that she was the lucky one, which of course, is often debated in the family.

His true calling, however, seems to be writing, and this book is an act of subconscious expression, amalgamating real life stories with fantasy in a liberating manner.

In his adventurous moments at home, he enjoys being referee to his son and daughter  Sometimes, he manages to sound tuneful when he is playing the electric guitar, though some neighbors disagree. When he is not playing the guitar, he is usually playing with his own hair on this head.

First of all, this isn't an easy book to review. Cause it's not a straight forward novel with a plot. Neither it's a collection of short stories. It's something of it's own, a collection of inter-related short stories!

The book is a collection of nine short stories, which are all related in a way. The author tries to bring out all kinds of beliefs through the various characters in the stories, and put them through various real life situations; their reactions, justifications and outcomes of these familiar real life situations is what is worth reading in this book.
Through the various characters in these short stories, various ways of thinking is portrayed to which you can relate to among your friends, relatives or even yourself.
All this, with strong characterization and flawless way of writing from the author makes this book worth a read. This book is sure to touch you in some way or the other, bringing back old memories. If not, you are sure to learn something from this book, something very personal, which is going to be with your for the rest of your life. This book is not an easy read, not at all. Each story is short enough to be completed in a couple of minutes, but what's nice is that it leaves a deep impact on you, and makes you think about the various beliefs of these characters and introspect yourself. I think this experience is the main USP of the book.

What more? The author never tries to force you to the end of the stories, you can always go to the website, and come up with your own ending!

Rating: 3.5/5

Book: Love, Peace & Happiness: What more can you want?
Author: Rituraj Verma
ISBN: 9789381836347
Publisher: Jufic Books
Pages: 223
Genre: Fiction
Language: English

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Review: When The Signal Turns Red

When The Signal Turns Red

Girish and Prajakta are in love. Very soon Girish will be joining the numero uno IT company of the country. He prepares himself by buying expensive clothes and other accessories he had always dreamed of. He and Prajakta have together planned to build on a good bank balance and then meet each others families to talk about marriage, probably after a year or two. Unexpectedly, the families get involved before Girish can join the IT company. Against all odds, the couple managed to convince their family and an engagement date is fixed. But destiny has other things in mind. A global catastrophe mars their plan which leads to the engagement getting annulled.

Will Girish find a way out of this predicament? Will he ultimately win Prajakta's hand or will he move on in life, learning to live without her?

About the Author:

Jayanand Ukey

Jayanand Ukey works for an IT company and is also a freelance journalist and blogger. He has a computer engineering degree from VESIT, Mumbai University. In a career spanning a decade, he has kept his hobby alive by writing three books. This book is his first published work. Jayanand lives in Mumbai with his family.
To know more about the author, visit him at or email him at

The cover of the book gives a fairly good idea about the theme of the book. A couple along with an old man shows the book is about a couple in love and somehow the story is linked to his/her father. It is simple and to the point, which is good.

The book is about two freshly-out-of-the-college couples, Girish and Prajakta. Both are placed into the top IT companies and are now planning to take their college love to the next level. Now that they had their jobs in their hand, they plan to talk to their families about their love. But something unexpected happens, and their parents come to know about their hidden love. 
Against all odds, the parents agrees to get their children engaged, one week after their joining date of their job. However, just a week before, job offers of both, Girish and Prajakta are withdrawn due to the on-going economic recession. And subsequently, the engagement is called off.
How the male protagonist leads the story to an happy ending by getting married to his love, is what this story is all about. 

The book is written in simple english, which is very easy to read. The narration is commendable which makes you want to keep on reading till you reach the conclusion of the story. During your read, you'll always think of what will happen next. And at times the author tries to keep the suspense up.

However, this book fails to impress you at the end. Certainly, you are happy to know the conclusion, but it fails to hook you up. This is more of an grandmother-told story which you listen to. There is nothing new in the plot, and is fairly guess-able at each step.

Nevertheless, this book is surely a one time read. You would not feel bored, but you can't expect a mind-blowing time. Read it if you're looking for a short read and don't want to spend your time too much. 

Rating: 2.5/5

Book: When The Signals Turns Red
Author: Jayanand Ukey
ISBN: 9788180460852
Publisher: Alchemy Publishers
Pages: 198
Genre: Fiction
Language: English

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Review: RIP

RIP - by Mukul Deva

RIP - The Resurgent Indian Patriots
Self-appointed guardians of a nation seething with anger at the endless scams and scandals rocking its very foundation. Vigilantes who vow to stop corrupt politicians and colluding civil servants.
Even if it means killing them. 

Colonel Krishna Athawale and his team of Special Forces officers rally to protect the country from the enemy within. They call themselves the K-Team. And no one is safe from their deadly intent. 

Hell bent on stopping them is Raghav Bhagat, rogue para commando, gun for hire and Krishna's bete noire.

Caught in the crossfire is Vinod Bedi, Special Director, CBI.
Reena Bhagat, a glamorous news anchor, embittered by her husband's betrayal. And two young boys, Sachin and Azaan, torn apart by the loss of a parent.

About the Author
An alumnus of La Martiniere College, Lucknow, the National Defence Academy, Pune and the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun, Mukul Deva was commissioned in December 1981 into the Sikh Light Infatry of the Indian Army. He took early retirement from the army after fifteen years of service  including a decade of combat operations in India and overseas. Now settled in Singapore, he is an entrepreneur, motivational speaker and an executive, business and creativity coach. He is also a Mentor on the United Nations Institute of Training and Research Afghanistan Fellowship.

Mukul Deva
The cover of the book is appealing and is sure to catch your attention at a book store among others. It is very thoughtful and apt to the story. The red and the orange tint, depicting the rage and anger, a soldier with a gun, leading it's country to a new horizon in the background. 
The book is a page turner in it's true sense. You are so engrossed in the book, that you don't even pay attention to the page number, till you realize the book has come to it's end. Whether you are a slow reader, or a fast one, you'll definitely want to complete this in one go.

A team of five ex-commandos, who call themselves the K-Team as everyone's name starts with a 'K', Krishna, Kamlesh, Kashif, Kevin, Karan and Kulwant, are a bunch of hardcore patriots who are set to bring justice to the country and punish the culprit. 
The story starts with 3 murders, each having charges of corruption on them. The responsibility is taken by RIP, and they openly warn the government to murder 3 more people in the coming 3 days if their demands, to put the guilty behind bars and to bring better laws to prevent such things in future, is not met. 
Home minister Karunakaran, who himself is involved in many such cases, will stop the RIP at any costs. Special Director of CBI, Vinod Bedi is called up, to stop them. But for the fear of them being caught alive, Raghav Bhagat, an ex-para commando is hired to take the RIP down before the CBI gets their hand on them.
It's a heart throbbing tale of three groups who would do anything to get the job done with a lot at stake. 

The best thing about the book is its familiarity with the real world incidents in the past. The recent scams and cases could all be related to in this book. Even some of the characters. With the right message for politicians and the citizens, this emotionally charged thriller with flawless narration makes this is a book worth reading. Go grab your copy, this book ought to be in your bookshelves! 

Rating: 4/5

Book: RIP
Author: Mukul Deva
ISBN: 9382618198
Publisher: Westland
Pages: 298
Genre: Fiction
Language: English

Mukul Deva can be found at his official website, here.

This review is a part of the Book Reviews Program at