More Than Dronas, There Are Krishnas In My Writing Journey: Mainak Dhar

A self-described cubicle dweller by the day and writer by night, our author in the hot seat, is the author of over a dozen books, some of which have been bestsellers in India and abroad. These books have also been translated into Turkish, Vietnamese, Japanese, French, German and Portuguese. He lives with a self-assigned target of writing a book a year

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Book Review: The Mahabharata Secret

What we know of history is only what the archeologists have so far dug out and a story that historians have written. What is there is a story different from what the historians have written? Because the archeologists haven’t found something so far, does not mean it never existed! This is the thrill of historical fiction. A well researched and

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Book Review: The Speaking Ghost of Rajpur

The Speaking Ghost of Rajpur impressed me with the title. It is one of those titles that promises a good read, if carried off correctly, like I hoped this one would be. The blurb was very exciting and it was with a pleasant anticipation that I began reading this book. The theme of the cover and the caricatures of four

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Book Review: The Prince of Patliputra

Shreyas Bhave’s first book The Prince of Patliputra (Asoka Trilogy #1) offers an action-packed story-line to the lovers of historical fiction. Taking a well-known personality from Indian history and weaving a gripping tale on his life is not an easy task. The task becomes more difficult when the personality the author is choosing is a well-known name among his possible

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Book Review: Alchemist of the East

“We dream and we actualize those which are closest to our hearts” Alchemist of The East is a story about a boy who copes up with his life after the untimely death of his parents and tries to follow his dreams only to be informed about a legacy he is a part of. Everything that follows adds to the making

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How to Create a Fantasy World – Tips on Worldbuilding

Fantasy is not a creation of the modern world. In fact the roots of fantasy go back thousands of years to an age of myths and legends, when wandering storytellers sat by a fire and recounted fantastic tales of wondrous worlds, populated by gods, heroes and monsters. Starting from the ancient epic of Gilgamesh and The Tales of King Arthur

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Book Review: Palm’s Foster Home for Peculiar Stories

I am quite ambivalent about my opinion on this book. It usually does not happen. I know whether I like it or not. It is a different matter that I may not be brutally honest in my review for a bad book, or superfluously glowing for a good book. But I know. Not this time. Because, Palm’s Foster Home For

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Book Review: Glowing Dark

Glowing Dark by D Siva Rama Krishna is an adventure thriller. The story revolves around a hidden treasure in a palace. The story is about a vicious plan plotted by a dear companion of an imperial family to plunder the concealed fortune of a kingdom. While some members of the royal family were killed in the process of plundering the concealed

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Book Review: Soul Warrior

In the last one decade, the Indian book market has seen a rapid upsurge of mythological fiction. Writers like Ashok Banker, Devdutt Pattanaik, Amish Tripathi has struck a chord with the young Indian readers who although seem reluctant to read the primary texts like The Mahabharata, The Ramayana, are more than interested in modern re-tellings of these texts which make these

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Book Review: 1 Friend Request Sent From Hanuman

We are living in the world of digital technology and a number of our interactions happen through social networking sites now days. But, what will happen if you find out that one of your beloved Gods is trying to reach you through one of these social networking sites? Have you ever thought about that? Well! 1 Friend Request Sent From

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Book Review: The Tusk That Did the Damage

How often is it that we meet a protagonist who is recognized as one of the biggest mammals walking on earth? This was certainly a first for me and such was its grandeur that it will forever be etched in my memory. Period. From the critically acclaimed author of Atlas of Unknowns and Aerogrammes, here is Tania James’ latest adventure-cum-tragedy set in

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Book Review: Resonance

Indian publishing is at a very interesting turn now. We currently have a hoard of writers writing in different genres. I don’t claim that all of them are readable but there are definitely some gems that don’t see the limelight much but are gems nevertheless. As a reviewer who gets review copies from most of the known publishing houses in

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Book Review: The Curse of Surya

Indian history. Ancient secrets. Mythological legends. Thriller. Reminds me of Ashwin Sanghi and The Krishna Key. Yes, when I read the blurb of this one it did remind me of The Krishna Key. A book blurb that has ancient Indian history mixed with some treasure hunting always intrigues me and, blurb of The Curse of Surya had these elements in

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Book Review: When Arya Fell Through the Fault

To begin with, the cover page is funky and vibrant at the same time. It has a boy who is caught between Lord Rama and the scary Ravana surrounded with things that is dear to him. The title is a little long, yet apt considering the plot. The book blurb is brief and would surely grab your attention. The characterisation

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Book Review: Terror on the Titanic

The book cover has the text, “To say I couldn’t put down this down is an understatement: I barely breathed. With rapier wit, Basu introduces us to Nathaniel Brown and his spine-chilling adventures. “ says Wendy Orr, author of Nim’s Island. Samit Basu’s Turbulence is a favorite and the Terror on the Titanic was an easy pick for me, especially

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Book Review: The Himalayan Revelation

An accidental discovery of the insignia of an ancient empire on a wooden prayer wheel at a Ladakhi monastery, soon turns into a dangerous chase between two nations trying to discover and establish ownership of a remote location in India, the existence of which was  a secret until then. The only man with any knowledge of this location is Xhan

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inKonversation: Nagendra Murti on Debuting With A Mind Thriller and More…

Born in Bengaluru, India and a Master of Software Engineering from Brandeis University, Waltham, USA, Nagendra Murti is a technologist and a customer advocate by profession. He is also an avid bird-watcher, photographer and wildlife enthusiast. His constant gripe is the disappearing lakes of Bengaluru due to chaotic urbanization and is looking for avenues to help with that cause. When time

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Book Review: Just the Facts, Madamji

Originally published in the year 2002 by Indialog Publications, Just the Facts, Madamji is authoress Sharmila Kantha’s debut work of fiction that introduces us to her very authentic detective, Mr. Ramji. Now, I won’t for a second believe that the Indian publishing industry back then was anything close to like what it is nowadays; especially in fiction—especially in the mystery genre.

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Book Review: The Guardians of the Halahala

Halahala – Hindu mythology. Vikramaditya – Indian history. Did I tell you I am a mythological & historical fiction fan. Shatrujeet Nath just went ahead and blurred the lines between the two, and the result is a book that gave me a reason to return to reviewing books 🙂 Coming to the book, The Guardians of the Halahala takes us

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Book Review: Losing My Religion

Losing my  Religion is  a roller-coaster ride — that of exhilaration and dismay, hope and despair, enthusiasm and disappointment. It says the story of life itself. How  an individual faces the ups and downs of life and emerges a winner!  An oft-told  story, you would say. Perhaps, but not in the way in which it is  narrated…there is an inspiring vitality

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Book Review: Labyrinth

Anthologies are not very rare in the Indian literary market these days, and yet there are few which can be counted into good ones. Litizen is a virtual platform for writers and it has come up with an interesting anthology, unrestricted to the bounds of genre. There’s gaming, ghosts, paranormal activities, beautiful con artists at job and a little magic

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Book Review: Under Delhi

Nothing hurts a reader as much than a disappointing read from his/her expectations of a book. When I picked this book, it sounded promising with it’s back cover description of a plot that involved a female vigilante fighting the evils thriving in the capital city, I was looking forward to have a great time with what sounded like a Kick-Ass

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Book Review: Path of the Swan

Indian authors in the fantasy genre is rare. And finding a competent Indian author in this genre is even rarer. And finding a fantasy story that stays with you forever is of the rarest. Charu Singh is one of the rarer. Almost first of its kind, a Tibetan-Buddhist fantasy novel, the novel is a thorough page turner, though the pace

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Book Review: Love Potion Number 10

Set in the 1960s, in the fictitious hill station of Hamara Nagar, Love Potion Number 10  transports its readers to a gentler age and times with its quirky cast of characters. Though touted as a Jana Bibi adventure, do not expect any pulse pounding action. The intrigue that the book blurb refers to is at best muted. But that doesn’t take

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Book Review: Haroun and The Sea of Stories

We all know of Salman Rushdie as the controversial author who has a fatwa hanging over his head for stepping into forbidden territory in his controversial treatise The Satanic Verses. But I had missed out, before I read this book, that he had soon after the fatwa stepped into action in what can be called a lit contrast – from

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Book Review: The Wordkeepers

Part of Debut Indian Writers Challenge 2013 As soon as I started reading the first page of Jash Sen’s debut novel, The Wordkeepers, I was instantly hooked by the scene, which drew me right onto the battleground in Kurukshetra, set at a pivotal moment, with Arjun–Ashwatthama about to annihilate the planet, and Lord Krishna trying to prevent it. Thus began a

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New England Meets India: inKonversation with Betsy Woodman

A north american with memories of India, returns back after decades to write a fiction based in the country of her childhood memories. Part memoir – part fiction the Jana Bibi Adventure series is back this winter with its second instalment. We get inKonversation with the creator of the vivacious fortune teller Jana Bibi and her intriguing parrot – Betsy

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Book Review: The Last War

Part of Debut Indian Writers Challenge 2013 Tell us who is your favourite character from The Mahabharata and why? Answer in the form below. The best answer makes you the Reader-Winner of September 2013 and gets fun-express The Average Indian Male by Cyrus Broacha home delivered at your place. Sandipan Deb’s debut  novel, The Last War surely is a page-turner. Having a corporate and

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Book Review: The Caretaker

Through the story of captain Ranjit Singh, Ahmad showcases one man, at two places – thousands of miles apart, in two situations – set years apart, yet connected like those thin threads of cheese that refuse to break, stretch as much as you may. A word-potrait of emotions with some intriguing secrets and revelations infused in the storyline is what, I would call The Caretaker is about.

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Book Review: The Secrets of the Dark

Part of South Asian Challenge 2013, Debut Indian Writers Challenge 2013 and Reading Challenge 2013: First Reads Legend. Secrets. A cult of protectors. A child of destiny. What more does a fantasy fiction fan need? Fantasy fiction seems to be taking some steady, sturdy steps in Indian literature these days. This year at The Tales Pensieve we have had the fantastic Luwan of Brida

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inKonversation: WordMaverick of April 2013 – Adi

A science graduate of Stanford University with an MBA from the Harvard Business School, an insatiable interest in the religious history of India, spirituality and mythology and one who claims to have spent his entire life researching for his debut book Tantra – Adi is the WordMaverick of April 2013. We get inKonversation with the shy wordsmith who gives us not

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Book Review: Shiva Trilogy

The Shiva Trilogy by Amish for me will always represent that whiff of freshness that stormed the Indian literary scene that was nearly choking with louveeee in 2010! (not that the scene is any different now [after 3 years] but the winds are definitely changing). The mythological – historical – adventure – fiction series is all but immortalized as one of the trend changers amongst Indian books and Indian publishing

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