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This is one crazy read. Reading this book was like watching someone take on sketching something simple without taking the pen off the sketch at any point... and then the artist forgets what s/he was drawing and continues on and on weaving intricate webs of design, nondesign and finally chaos. This chaos doesnt unravel, doesnt come undone. I kept at it to find some semblance of method in the madness that was this story but my thirst was unquenched yet I was not thirsty anymore. 
I think I have ceased to make sense myself. 
The lead character is the most complex mix of character that I have ever encountered. 
I started Murakami with 1Q84 which was equally crazy yet clearer in the madness. Wind-Up Bird has so many characters with so many personalities or serious lack of personality that it was incredibly complex to understand and grasp their role in the lead character's life. 
I think I am done with Murakami for a while.


Read more about The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle on Goodreads here

 
 
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1Q84 is a mind boggling. Simply mind boggling. I thought I would be a little lost not having read 1984 by George Orwell. But my fears were unfounded. Apart from similar some references, there was no back story in 1984. 
1Q84 is about two main characters - Aomame and Tengo. Both are complex characters with a free spirited soul. 

Their world changes when a second moon appears and then it all culminates in its collision. Somewhere in the plot, when their unusual love story emerges with none of the romance, you would begin to piece together the true essence of the story. 

Read more about 1Q84 on Goodreads here

 
 
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A really nice read. Human nature is tried and tested everyday but when a disaster strikes, raw nature, true colors come soaring out before anyone has a chance to.think. 
I liked each of Divakaruni's characters. Some were surprising while others were honest and amazing. 
Many of their tales lead to some introspective moments while others make us look at our own lives, loves and hearts. Very few stories inspire that in their audience.

Read more about One Amazing Thing on Goodreads here



 
 
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Here the story of the Pandavas through the eyes and voice of Panchali was amazing. I love these mythical beings in their human like avatars and behavior, but hearing it from a woman's voice of reason or unreason is awe-inspiring. I love the strength of character more because it wasn't easy to summon those strengths and remain moral. 
I loved read the Mahabharata tales but ready Divakaruni's version of it was even better. 

Read more about The Palace of Illusions on Goodreads here




 
 
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A fascinating and gripping story. I barely put the book down from when I picked it up. 
The dream teller's story interpreted yet not by her daughter. It's gripping not just in the story but also it the way it is told - gently, understanding that the reader too needs to be held like the daughter. 
I love the way Divakaruni tells a story. She drags me into it and makes me relate to every emotion, feel for every character and then leaves a piece of it with me as i turn the last page with a sigh. 
I was gripped in her mesmerizing spell and got my hands on all her books. Each one thrilling me more than the previous. Never tiring of either her style or her stories. 

Read more about Queen of Dreams on Goodreads here




 
 
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Most of the stories around inviting parents to stay with the son or daughter on a foreign soil rings exactly the same. The very predictable washing of clothes, rich cooking, lifestyle, everything becomes an issue. Perhaps this book was written a while ago and that's why all the stories sound exactly the same. For today, times have changed not just for the younger generation but also for the older. India is no longer the traditional backward, simplistic India. 
The other stories in this book are all right but wrought with emotion and tidal tears. 
I liked some of the stories and wouldn't read the others again.

Read more about The Unknown Errors of Our Lives on Goodreads here

 
 
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I am not a die-hard baseball fan. I am a mere amateur, in-it-for-the-beer-and-wings kinda Yankee fan. 
I picked up this book because I always pick up John Grisham's new books. Needless to say, he surprised me with this story because I kinda went in expected a patch eyed evil mysterious murdered when I heard Calico Joe. The surprise was very very pleasant. 
The book was easy to follow despite all the baseball stats showing incredible performances by Cubs and Mets teams. 
You do not end up feeling pity for Joe or Warren. Neither of them deserve any for different reasons.


Read more about Calico Joe on Goodreads here

 
 
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Lisa See built a powerful story on blocks of historic events and characters. The Shanghai of the 30s and 50s, the war crimes, the survival, the immigration process on the West Coast, the Chinatown... its was a journey where one could recognize certain landmarks.

The story takes you through an emotional roller coaster without being melodramatic, intense without being shallow. 

Honestly I liked the open ending, leaving the reader to imagine the Mao's China, the Confession Program, Pearl's journey, Joy's self discovery and makes the reader perhaps design a hopeful return of the mother daughter duo to Chinatown or their loss of soul and self in the new Communist China. But there is a sequel to this book - Dreams of Joy. 

Some parts of this books depicted parts of the Chinese culture and it rang so true that it took me back to the time I lived in China. 

I shall wait a while to let my emotions and opinions subside before I pick that one up. Or maybe I can't.

Read more about Shanghal Girls on Goodreads here

 
 
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Oh well, this is a bold enough book but with endless stereotypes. 

Pray, why would you make this alternative sex liking guy a demi God? Why make him a champion of hunger across the world? To justify his appetite for a different lifestyle? James did not need to validate BDSM. 

And the female protagonist - she is 23 and a VIRGIN? Why bestow her with virtues? To validate her fascination and raw attraction to a man she meets?

I wish this book aimed to take out stereotypes and just accept lifestyles with as less judgement as possible. 

The indignant best friend whose first time was expectedly in a drunken stupor on the back seat of a beat up with a brainless jock, the rich rich oh-very-rich male with blonde, silent, efficient, unquestioning servers magically appearing and disappearing, the female character is a mix of apparent emotional distraught over every slight, misplaced dignity, unapparent intelligence and a whole bunch of unreasonable tears. Ofcourse they are both astonishingly beautiful beyond believe. *ROLLING EYES* (this has taken on a new meaning now)

Anyways, I have read Fifty Shades Darker and can safely say that it only gets worse from here. I think Shades of Grey was better than its sequel by a few fine degrees. 

Thanks for putting semi-porn on the main shelves where women (and men) can reach for it without the raised eyebrow. *Rolling EYES*

Fifty Shades Darker by E.L. James 

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E L James is a genius. What she accomplished with her books was to make some erotic reading legit and mainstream. 
E L James is not a literary star.
E L James is definitely NOT an author. 
E L James is NOT a story teller. 

Fifty stupid shades darker is a out and out romance novel with some lingering references to the predecessor. Yes, it has some "kinky fuckery" within some of its pages delivered with so much of misgiving (to make it legit) and apologies (to interpret it as LOVE). 

The characters developed here have fleeting references to good virtues and graces but there is no depth that we actually understand who Christian or Ana really are. They come off as two immature, juvenile, bickering rich brats who are making a mountain out of not even a molehill! 

Nothing about this book was interesting not even the erotic parts. 

I cant believe it lies there in the Top Sellers List for the last several weeks.

Oh well, atleast women (men too I guess) can pick these books up and check them out at libraries, book stores without being looked over by high school cashiers or senior citizen library volunteers.

Fifty Shades Freed by E.L. James

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I have a confession to make. I hated the first two parts of this trilogy, then any normal person would have stayed away from the third. 

But I didn't.  Yes, I have a part of me that is morbid. That subjects myself to the less finer things in life. But more, that Fifty Shades series is like a train or car wreak that you cant take your eyes off. You kind of know what to expect but you still want to see it. Maybe to find closure. 

So I got hold of the last book in this series. Firstly let me assure the haters that E.L James has NOT left a thread hanging so that she can climb on that into a fourth in the series. She tied it all up tightly, poorly and distastefully. 

This book too is filled with disbelief that each of the characters can be loved, the crude display of wealth (which is a little unbelievable but then this is a fantasy), the shallowness of the female character (Ana - Oh, I am married to a very wealthy man who is the talk of all the social world and yet I didn't think that perhaps I should not have been topless on a public beach in front of my security detail!) and Grey's unexplained conflicting emotions. 
Throw in a bad guy for some fun and some light kinky porn and voila - you have Fifty shades of blah!

 
 
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I wasn't very impressed when I started this book but when I got to about 10 letter exchanges, I could identify with the very real and raw emotions of these 20 somethings who have had to grow up in a short time. This book is an exchange of letters by a young convicted Tony and his first love Natasha. Poor, black and struggling Harlem residents go through the cards that has been dealt them with courage, open mindedness and emotional struggles. It was inspirational how each of them handled things and how they aspired to stop being poor & struggling forever. 

I really liked the way Buchhanon put this together and kept it real.

Read more about Upstate on Goodreads here

 

    indigoandviolet

    I get lost in books and live their lives until I turn the last page. I ponder a while, carry the laughter, shed a few tears and sigh. Then the thirst for more arises. 


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