Posts

Book Review: The Patiala Quartet by Neel Kamal Puri

Image
The Patiala Quartet by Neel Kamal Puri is a book I bought recently. With an eminent writer like Khushwant Singh recommending the book as a 'debut novel that will rank among the best works of English language fiction from Punjab', I didn't have to think twice before I opted to order it on Amazon. However, being extremely choosy about the books that I read, I still checked out various book bloggers to read their reviews on the debut novel. [Best Books I read in 2020]                                                       All book reviews of The Patiala Quartet praised the debut novel as a sensitive chronicle of life during Punjab's turbulent political upheavals that also wtinessed the beginning of the Khalistani movement. So, I was like, how did I miss this book in the first place? I must read it! With keen interest, I bought the book. The first few chapters brought forth some strong characters, particularly the female protagonists Minnie and Karuna whereas the male protag

Pagglait movie review: Sanya Malhotra rocks the film with heartwarming performance

Image
What happens when a newly wed couple's life is thrown out of gear after a spouse dies within five months of marriage? You would expect a tearjerker tragedy, right? But this film switches to another track - a realistic, slightly humourous one. Sanya Malhotra, starring in Pagglait, breaks the 'widow' stereotype in Indian cinema.                                                  [Sanya Malhotra on Twitter] Before I dive into why Pagglait made so much sense to me, let me share with you a few things about the big 'W' - yes, the word 'widowhood' which makes it seem as though a woman has stopped being who she is and has been turned into 'She-who-must-not-be-named' - a pathetic and grim reality of how Indians from all communities and religions tend to treat widows. Widowers - ah- that's a different story. They can date freely and go on courtships and no one is going to bat an eyelid. Widows as Women of Substance In my life, there are some strong and resi

Best of Kochi in 3 days!

Image
Planning a 3 day visit to Kochi? Is Kochi worth visiting?  I would say 'Absolutely, don't miss it!'. I've put together this list because I love the city of Kochi. It is also my home town. But first, stay safe! When there is an extended weekend, I often visit Kochi for 3 days and I love every moment.                                           Image Credit: https://twitter.com/Svara Ernakulam Shiva Temple: Revered as 'Ernakulathappan', Lord Shiva is the presiding deity of this temple and the entry is free. Indeed, a beautiful temple to visit while you are spending time in Kochi. For me, this is a temple that links me back to my earliest memories of my grandmother, an ardent devotee of Ernakulathappan. She would do 'pradakshina' in the mornings and evenings and would leave the temple premises very reluctantly. As a child, I used to accompany her though I couldn't figure out what excited her so much about these temple visits. After she passed away, this

The Girl On The Train review: Parineeti Chopra starrer loses track

Image
The Girl On The Train review: This weekend, I watched the Netflix thriller 'The Girl On The Train'. Directed by Ribhu Dasgupta, the Parineeti Chopra starrer has been inpsired by the best selling Paula Hawkins novel with the same title. But I have not read the book. However, I found Parineeti Chopra's portrayal of the protagonist quite intriguing in terms of her performance. But the film? Well....                          Overall, the film is a complete let-down in terms of how it structures the story plotting and rolls out weakly structured characters that are wasted on Parineeti Chopra and Aditi Rao Hydari. Sloppy direction has wrecked the Bollywood version of 'The Girl On The Train'. The Girl On The Train review: What's disappointing? Racing across a gamut of turbulent emotions and situations such as infidelity, betrayal, blackmail and a police investigation, The Girl On The Train fails to convince the audience 'what is really going on'.  Putting up an

Book Review: Like sweet mangoes, the Awasthis of Aamnagari is a delightful read

Image
Book Review of Awasthis of Aamnagri: The unusual book title and its tempting cover showcasing golden coloured mangoes clinched my instant interest. Oozing with the sweetness of mangoes, Shubha Sarma's 'The Awasthis of Aamnagari' is a delightful read.                                            [Source: petalsfromtheheart.blogspot.com ] With the fragrance of old world charm, the Awasthis of Aamnagri is an ode to the old world charm of living in a Indian family ecosystem.  Published by Niyogi Books, the story revolves around the happenings inside the home of a renowned lawyer Pandit Dinath Awasthi, his wife known as 'Mataji' and their seven children, who are married and staying with them under the same roof. The conversations between Panditji and his wife will remind readers of the banter between their own parents at home and especially when it comes to 'brother-in-law' talk. A strikingly sweet and simple writing style makes this a delightful read. The book fe

Is Love Enough Sir movie review: Must Watch! Offbeat movie with brilliant performances

Image
Is Love Enough Sir movie review: Loved watching this movie! What a brilliant and sensitive portrayal by two fine artists - kudos! This is a heartwarming story of Ashwin, a rich young man (starring Vivek Gomber) with a privileged background and a young widow (starring Tilottama Shome) who works at his home as a domestic help. Their emotional struggles and social chasm are brought to life. Is Love Enough Sir Movie review: Story, plot, protagonists We are introduced to Ashwin, an aspiring writer who returns from the US and lives in with his girl friend, breaks off their wedding and stays cocooned in his apartment. Through glimpses of a neatly maintained apartment and a functional, super neat kitchen, we see the culinary skills and housekeeping discipline of Ratna, the domestic help, who is employed by Ashwin's mother, referred to as 'Mummyji'. Ratna's dignity is evident in every word she speaks and every step she takes. Ashwin comes across as a rare gentleman - one who no

How to overcome winter blues

Image
Overcoming winter blues isn't easy. A spell of no sunshine, only gloom! As I write this, a hot cup of adrak chai sits by my side. A blanket crunches up, offering a warm layer of comfort for my feet - which feels perpetually cold. Amidst the unpredictability of everything around us - be it life, weather conditions, I choose to read and find my comfort from the pages that I dive into.                                                                                                            Image: Pexels.com Winters are gloomy and depressing. The one thing that cheers me up other than sunshine is - yes, you guessed it - READING! How to fight the Winter Blues Reading helps! In fact, I am reading The Mother's words today and I felt this can resonate with e verything we are currently grappling with . Way ahead of the times that she was living in, The Mother's discourses on mental health are a treasury of knowledge for humanity. Her emphasis on the mental education of childre

The Best Books I read in 2020

Image
2020 has been a mind boggling year like no other.  From the way life has panned out since the coronavirus pandemic took over the world , everything has changed. Books brought me peace. No doubt,  my collection of books  propped me up with good company, made me laugh and cry and cozy up when I needed it. Everytime I stepped into the pages of a book, I found that my fears and worries vanished into it. Some magic, huh? It wasn't an easy year. Still here are a f ew favourites from my reading list during the pandemic. Struggling to find time to read books - join Gretchen Rubin's to read for 21 mins every day - read this for more details.                                               FOLLOW MY PINTEREST BOARDS In Search of Heer by Manjul Bajaj: Published by Tranquebar Loved this book to bits! My best read of 2020 started off with this contemporary retelling of the iconic Heer Ranjha love story. I had read many readers praising this book on my timeline but I place a lot of trust in