Saturday, July 11, 2020

Dalal's street by Anurag Tripati

No. of pages : 214
Publisher : Niyogi books
Published on : September 5, 2019
Book links : Goodreads Amazon
Author links : Goodreads Facebook

My review 

Dalal's street is an exceptional, above average well-plotted book written by doubtlessly a first-rate writer of the modern times. The book's rich content speaks for itself. This is a incondescent masterpiece that feeds the readers mind and engages their spirit with larger than a glimpse of how the stock industry runs. Definitely for people who know nothing about stock market or just starting out as well as for those who are experts, the book is a blessing. It serves as a self-help guide providing insights into the much sought out industry by lot of people whose motive is driven by profits and extravagant living. 

Gambling in stock market when  in reality devoid of practical knowledge of how it works is idiocy. The uninformed who are attracted by the benefit it brings depend on brokers partially or wholly in the industry. These people may or may not have their clients best interest at heart. Brokerage commission plays a larger role in the life of brokers. Deceiving and manipulating a novice to invest on shares is done by cheaters and frauds who want to keep up their position in the firm at the expense of their clients hard earned money. They spend it lavishly for their comfortable livelihood. 

The first chapter deals with Mr. Agarwal , an honourable bank employee. We learn that he has invested all his savings in stock market after paying heed to the big shot , Harshad Mehta. Even his boss and colleagues did. The scam was so huge, it has claimed its first victim none other than his boss. After this tragic incident, he loses faith in stock market rather loathes it. 

Varun Agarwal, the only son of Agarwal is the main protagonist in this novel. His friends are Anil, Pooja and Devika. All of them are fresh MBA graduates. Pooja has a huge crush on Varun. She is a simple, righteous middle class girl who loves him unconditionally. Although he knows her interest in him, he doesn't reciprocate because he is attracted to Devika who has a feminine, curvaceous figure with an attitude. It is clear , his love is based on lust. Anil is a jovial person and considered a good friend by both Varun and Pooja. Devika is depicted as a selfish person who will do almost anything to get the title, 'Winner' in life. 

All four join TBB, a stock trading firm. Devika with her good looks and charms works her way to the top. Others work their butt off to survive the test of time. After the training period is over,  all the four try their luck. Devika is the only one who doesn't have to work at all. She uses her cunning tactics to lure men into her trap and succeed in her mission. Anil, a lazy chap lures innocent and uneducated people in his quest to stay in the firm for the long haul. Varun has a good mentor Mr. Tiwari-ji and believes at the beginning in not cheating anyone which lasts only for a short course of time.  

His rudimentary trading skills annihilates the precious money of his friends and family. Some refuses to speak to him, others who do lost trust in him. With his limited knowledge in stock market, losses keeps mounting but surprisingly he survives. He is however taunted by his father and his job caused further frictions in the relationship. Monthly incentives and recognition corrupts his mind and greed becomes his company. Luxuries deafness his voice of conscience. In order to earn more brokerage, he and many of his colleagues along with his boss and the CEO, deceive their clients.

Varun has sound judgement. He detects who is good and bad accurately. With this blessing, he must have made wise choices , sadly lust for material and physical pleasures blinds his mind , in the process,  he sells himself short. He stoops so low that he loots money from his innocent aunt who is an aged widow and then he dances to the tune of his boss, Sunny. He introduces Anil and Devika to this grand business of cheating big all for the enormity of profits. 

The ugly state of some big industries are revealed. 'Dalal's street' has violence and adult content. Think before you leap is one of the many messages of the book. You can't believe your own shadow , I mean best friends and family members thus you should keep your own counsel and act on your instinct after thorough investigation of everything. 

The major setback of the book is for the people who are nescience about the stock market specifically the terms used in the industry to understand the book though it is invaluable and satisfies the readers hunger for knowledge and gives an useful message to be cautious in hiring and investing their time and money on the advice of a stock trading firm at face value. No doubt this is a must read story. Each chapter kept me hooked. There's evident of author's gift of the gab. I recommend the book to all readers who have got a big interest in stock market.

Rating 3.5/5

Friday, July 03, 2020

2049 by Deepak Kaul


No.of pages : 67
Book links : Goodreads Amazon 
Author link : Goodreads 

My review 

Human beings literally changed the face of Earth. The world is currently facing the gravest crisis in its history. Will our species become extinct like millions of years ago it happened to the dinosaurs? Is there any divine intervention? Second coming of Jesus? or an asteroid destroying our whole planet? Come to your own conclusion about my experience with this book after reading my review.

2049 by Deepak Kaul is a book that reveals appalling details about the fate of us all, mere humans. Yes, it is fiction but the truths about the hole in ozone layer, more carbon emission, green house effect, animal extinction, pandemic outbreak , etc can never be denied so does the author's work. Earth is not protected anymore. A fundamental truth which is very simple to understand.

This is a fictious account of a futuristic world. Certainly, it doesn't contain any good message except blessings we have in the present. The readers are warned through this book to be better equipped and well prepared to tackle the worst of their lives that may occur later. A cruel reality has already surfaced during the outbreak of Covid-19. What worst crisis is next? Here the author emphasizes how floods affects all the nations.  Irredeemable calamity forms the core subject of the novel. We are also given a moment to ponder our planet we are currently occupying is safe or unsafe? A truth we all know by heart. But in the near future , how are we going to cope with the foreseen or unforeseen disasters than our ancestors, the previous generations  and also we had ever faced?

The novel takes place in New York city. Life in this place has changed . Previously , it was heaven for the immigrants and the natives, now it's just the opposite. Reasons are plentiful. The main cause would be humans negligence especially the politicians blunder or careless mistakes. The own interests of many leaders in power and their undying support to greed have affected the world , them and it's people negatively.

Climate change , increased carbon emission, animal extinction, pandemic caused the earth insurmountable damages to the entire human kind all over the world. Covid 19 in 2020 is just a tipping point for the most dangerous threats that came upon this universe.  Survival is hard for those who overcame much after the pandemic took lives. People are forced to embrace the new reality. Tolerating floods and waiting patiently for a miracle of some kind.

New York city has changed enormously that too for the worst of the worst. One of the protagonists worries the welfare of his children and grandchildren. What will be their future like? is a question that is apt to our current scenario, Covid-19 too. Each chapter in the book explains the predicament created by human's foolishness which puts a knife in our neck. We have to find alternative ways to survive as sooner or later, the destruction of earth due to our horrendous errors are also on the picture. It is high time, the leaders, politicians and business magnets must plan to think unselfishly and innovatively for the betterment of the society in large is a message I would like to give having read this eye opener. After we make Earth a hell for our living why should we search other planets we know nothing about to be our home. Why not start making life changes to make  our planet, heaven in the wake of covid-19 which targets human lives?

The book unlatches the readers mind to think about what could go wrong if we humans disrespect nature. He has also questioned whether a divine exists. If there's any such, is there any judgment day like the bible says? No clue. It is beyond the author or anyone's comprehension.

2049 by Deepak Kaul is an awakening read. It shines light on the shocking truth, human species is making the earth non-liveable. We are the ones digging our very own graves. Those who are looking for an entertaining read will find this book, very, very boring. Others who are after an useful, enlightening book will definitely find author Deepak Kaul' s fiction, a worthy, satisfactory read. I recommend the informative book to everyone out there. This is a must read by adults.

Rating 4.5/5

Monday, June 29, 2020

Unlocking : A memoir of family and art by Nancy L Presly

No.of pages : 224
Add caption
Publisher : She writes press
Publication date : May 5, 2020
Book links : Goodreads Amazon
Author links : Goodreads Website

My review 

Unlocking is a well crafted memoir of author Nancy L. Presly. This book is divided into three parts. The first part describes her family history including her uncles, aunts and cousins, her childhood days and teenage years in addition to the relationship she shared with her parents,  sibling and relatives.

In the second part, her college days, her life partner, how she met him, their marriage, career lives and sailing with health struggles of her partner, birth of a loving child , career crisis and such was discussed. In my school days , the one subject which I thought insignificant for life was Geography. The innumerable places she refers in the book perplexed me. I found myself in lost island. Another challenge for me was, her passionate interest in arts especially the historical paintings. Wow. She has written so much. The blame is on me because I have never been a fan of such things until recently I have developed a taste for it.  Her relationship with dad (Father-in-law) and mom (mother-in-law) is the envy amongst women.

The third part is about her whipple procedure and  given a chance at life by the supreme being, becoming a meemaw, settling in Atlanta a block away from her son and looking after her grandkids, guiding them towards the right
direction. She has shared pictures in each of the parts which makes the chapters easy to visualize.

I couldn't understand why her mother and brother undermined her and said she is incapable of achieving anything big and success is out of her reach, be it education or organising a party.  The restrictions were hard to make sense as family should encourage not discourage. Contrarily, I could imagine her state of mind when the author was controlled and emotionally manipulated by her otherwise loving father. Some details about her first love which was widely despised by her family were missing. Why exactly they restrained her?

Family tree is very important in a person's life. Not only for health concerns that is hereditary but for everythingelse. Like for instance , physical appearance and character is passed through genes. It brings immense pleasure especially to look at our grandparents and great grandparents , inquisitively ask our parents what these people were like and hear life stories they shared with them. It is pure bliss.

Nancy L. Presly is a woman with a big, generous heart. Although she hasn't revealed stories of a lot about her giving nature to her friends and family, I got a good glimpse of her beautiful personality in helping her son's family and raising her grandchildren's life admirably. She is an ebullient person. From the beginning of the book, I started liking her for her sincere character. She is also a very sentimental kinda person and respects family values , unconventional in raising her son as a doting friend nothing like a mother which I understood from reading the book.

I could see traces of the old me in her very well. Searching through old photos of her family and finding revelatory pictures, rejoicing is written exquisitely. When the author begged the current owner of her house to walk inside where she grew up, it was truly ,deeply and insanely emotional. I would do the same thing she did. In many ways, author Nancy L. Presly reminded me who I once was. Only that she is very beautiful while I am not. Lol. Emotionally strong and psychologically aware , she is a role model for youths and young parents.  What I didn't like in the book is, the chapters could have been divided into parts more concisely . I felt overload of unnecessary information in some of the pages, I was unable to keep up the pace and the clarity of those chapters were missing. It might also be only to me.

Overall, I loved the book. I recommend it to readers  who want to recollect their memories of the past, their entire family and old memories of members who have passed away, their life struggles that they need to rise above just like the author. Nobody leads an easy life. Every one of us has an inspiring story hidden in our mind waiting to come out. Read 'Unlocking' then pen your thoughts in a diary about your family, friends and acquaintances, collect old photos and create new memories, your future generation will thank you from the bottom of their heart. Preserve good memories and life lessons, your whole generation will be the most alert and blessed.

Rating 4/5 

Excerpt

One of the joys of our new home was we lived near Rock Creek Park [in Washington, D.C.], where Bill and I would frequently walk together along miles of wooded paths. We often walked silently, looking at leaves and forest moss and mushrooms caught in sunrays, listening for birds or deer, chipmunks dashing across the path. Sometimes we walked on the Billy Goat Trail, along the Potomac River near Great Falls, and on the C & O Canal. I cherished these times together and opportunities to walk in isolated places I couldn’t do on my own. We also took weekend excursions to the Blue Ridge Mountains, enjoying the spectacular views and walks on the Appalachian Trail as well as in Western Maryland, where we stayed in quaint places and discovered amazing places like Cranesville Swamp, a boreal peat bog formed some fifteen thousand years ago during the last ice age, with its surreal vegetation and total isolation.

Travel is one of the great pleasures and constants in my life, and the sensorial memory of trips can resonate over a long period of time whether focused on the outdoors or art-related itineraries. I often think Bill and I are the best of ourselves when we travel. Once our lives in Washington became financially stable, we took longer trips to Canada, Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons, Belize (including an excursion to the remarkable Mayan city of Tikal in Guatemala), and Hawaii, one of my favorite places with its pounding waves and varied landscape, especially Kauai, where we hiked spectacular trails and glimpsed a rare patch of sea and sky near Mount Waialeale at one of the wettest spots on earth. I would become a different person on these vacations: the hardworking assistant director, and later the driven consultant, were left behind. I could totally relax and embrace my more indulgent and adventurous self. 

These trips focused on the natural world were essential infusions, reviving my  spontaneity and sense of awe. For my sixtieth birthday we went to New Zealand. I still recall the sense of wonder we experienced walking out of our isolated cottage on the north shore of the South Island to be confronted with the amazing night sky of the Southern Hemisphere for the first time. It was a cloud-less evening with the Milky Way vividly splayed in bands across the sky. There was no ambient light, only endless crystal clear stars and constellations we had never seen before. I felt again the awe I did as a child looking at the heavens with my father. Later, driving from the Franz Josef Glaciers to Queenstown, we pulled over to gaze at what seemed like an endless river snaking its way through valleys. It was the most remarkable color I have ever seen—a silver-blue with a touch of turquoise glowing in the brilliant clarity of Southern Hemisphere light. On a trip to Costa Rica, we were enveloped in the wet mist of a cloud forest, with lush vines, huge leaves, and moss and drooping flowers everywhere, an immersion occasional broken by daylight and the sighting of a Quetzal or a deadly yellow pit viper curled asleep in a tree. I took photographs of the mist and enormous leaves, but the images in my mind are more vivid. 

From our early days in London, travel has also been about looking at art. We still become excited contemplating a visit to an important museum for the first time, not only about seeing the art but also about experiencing the architecture and what it conveys about the history and identity of an institution. Bill and I believe art is profoundly important and it is a powerful bond we share, a bond nourished in England and one that only deepened over the years. Art has the power to move me deeply, to make me reflect on who I am as a human being. It can provoke profound musings about empathy and creativity, about the human condition and the need to find meaning.

Disclaimer The book was received in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Alice in wonderland by Lewis Carrol


No. of pages : 71
Publisher : Macmillan
Published on : November 26, 1865
Genre : Fantasy
Book links : Goodreads Amazon

My review

I watched the 2010 film but only today I found the time to read the much hyped book of all times which was published long time ago. I am glad I read the asonishing book . A very quick paced story, Alice in wonderland by Lewis Carroll is a wonderful fiction about the strange adventures of a young girl, Alice. She is sitting on the bank near her sister who is busy and active with reading . Dissimilar to her sister, she is of the opinion what is the use of a book if there's no pictures or conversations in it. So she feels sleepy and bored. Before indulging in deep sleep , diverting her is a speaking rabbit which takes a watch from its waistcoat pocket and it right away grabs her attention. It occurs to her, she hasn't seen a speaking rabbit in her life until now. Curiosity runs in her veins. She follows the rabbit hole and hence begins the adventures of Alice.

She ventures into the unknown boldly and is ready to explore mysteries mainly her desire is to explore the beautiful garden but sadly whatever she sees in the places she visits and the baffling creatures she encounters and their meaningless cultures she feels more and more lost. It puzzles her and she is tired of the mad living animals and its mad mannerisms.

Alice in wonderland is nothing just a creativity of the author, Lewis Carroll. He has used his remarkable imaginary skills and weaved a story that isn't of any meaning to anyone although the young readers will find the book accounting for an excellent read. There's nothing like a moral message in the book.  If I should mention one by my learning, I would say, the book encourages us to dream and let our creative skills flow.

According to me,  Lewis Carrol is an impeccable story teller of fantasy . Some critics may label it as stupid and nonsense story but they cannot question the imagination of the author and prove it is wrong or unworthy or waste of time to read his books. I would definitely say this fantasy book is one of his masterpiece. If I could describe in one sentence, the book is a marvellous entertainment and food to fuel one's imagination particularly that of children. It will as well serve as a bed time story for small children aged 3 and above. The book warrants a reader, a time well spent. A must read by fantasy lovers.

Rating 3.5/5

Thursday, June 25, 2020

The good stranger by Dete Meserve


No. of pages : 283
Series : Kate Bradley Mystery 3
Publisher : Lake Union Publishing 
Published on : May 19, 2020
Genre : Suspense mystery
Book links : Goodreads Amazon
Author links : Goodreads Website 

My review 

How often have we smiled at a stranger? How often have we helped a stranger expecting nothing in return? How often have we risked our own lives for a stranger? How often have we touched the lives of a stranger and inspired them to be kind and understanding of one another? In the present day scenario, even most family members think zillion times before taking a big leap in lending their time and money to their own siblings, cousins, uncles and aunts. The kind of help that doesn't involve money and much time is also put on hold for no solid reason. Scepticism and cynicism is all over the picture in today's pseudo-westernised society. In order to be helped, you first need to help me is the slogan of selfish people that occupy this vast universe. To do something nice for others is not simple. For starters, you should have a heart. Heartless people don't do charity or don't commit themselves to causes unless it's quid pro quo. 

Third in the series, 'The good stranger' has the same protagonist in the prior novels , Kate Bradley, the only daughter of senator Hale Bradley. In this story, she embarks on a fresh journey, a quantum milestone  after getting a job as a reporter in American News Channel prior to working in LA for Channel eleven.Her hopes and wishes are heightened despite the warnings from her ex-boss that working for ANC is a gargatuan business. She is challenged but she is feisty, unafraid, full of courage and other such qualities engulfs her to go for it head on and prove him wrong.

From where she came in , she learns New York, Manhattan is not similar to the city she was accustomed to and the people living here have different manners that seems like politeness is off the picture in most inhabitants books. She adapts to the city's demands and tries to fit in her new office and apartment with hopes as well as despairs . In personal life, she is dealing with the breakup with her partner, Eric. What is the big deal if one's personal life sucks? At least in professional life, she is given a chance to prove her worth. Will she let go this opportunity? No.

Power-outage happens after a avalanche of storm. Unusual things occur in the dark hours. Following that, people get gifts from a stranger with a message "You are all connected". Kate Bradley wants to cover this news. Her boss Mark is unimpressed with her, however, support comes from wonders of the world reporter, Scott Jameson and finally he gives in. It's left to her not to disappoint , this is news worthy and she is gonna crack who is behind all this doing good for strangers. Is there a hidden agenda? Her previous stint in Good Sam and Robin Hood story doesn't draw attention from her boss just like this anonymous people who are indefatigably helping and spreading positivity throughout city.

The blooming romance between Scott and Kate is rushed. They do have same wavelength. I should believe so. What did he see in her exactly to have been convinced of his feelings? A mirror image of himself, I can't put my finger on it. They both are naive and annoyingly optimistic. Oh God, how I wish even when I have no clue about Eric, they would be back together and Paige would be reunited with Scott. This is my, one man for one woman principle telling. I don't think that's wrong. Human beings aren't animals mating with multiple sexual partners.

I haven't read the first two books in the series though I don't regret it immensely. A good stranger is a mind boggling, standalone book,  I am totally taken by surprise about the very fact, this book's impact will remain with me forever eternally. Yes! No joking. Books like these are rare. I enjoyed it. I got educated. My time with the book was well-spent. I learnt how should I be spending the rest of my life. I wouldn't do everything what the secret 4 did. But I would do things to show my love, care, understanding, kindness, genuineness and all things humane to the deserving. If that's selfish, be it. There is peal of evil existing in the minds of people.  We don't know when and where we will be cheated or drained financially, emotionally and physically.To be choosy is how you protect yourself from the hurt that's gonna shake you for being useful to the wrong people.

'The good stranger' is fast paced with lots of action in it that kept me busy wanting more from each chapters as I progressed. Absolutely amusing, unmatchable, out of the usual novel. Having read a reasonable number of crime novels , I am pleased to find out there are people who actually have good intentions for doing things that no ordinary person like us will dare to do so. People judge and be judged. Few gifted individuals find meanings in their trying times and do deeds that are blessings to large number of people touching them emotionally and psychologically and it is no feat. I recommend the book to everyone who wants a break from reading crime novels or heroes and villains fighting to outwin each others smartness and power. No blood shed in this novel. There are actually good people who aren't greedy, egoistic and self-loving makes this inspiring book, a must have in every adult's house.

Rating 4/5

Disclaimer I received the book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Note

According to FTC guidelines, I disclose that all books reviewed in this blog are either received from authors/publishers/book promoters/bloggers or read online or picked from the local library. For books received in exchange for an honest review, I didn't receive any monetary compensation.