Categories
Book Reviews Reviews

Black white and the grays in between- Book Review

**********A little  Disclaimer *********

Gosh! it is tough to review a book written by a friend. There are two reasons why it’s tougher for me: The author Abhishek Hemrajani is not only my friend from ISB(batchmate)  but was also my colleague in Microsoft. I consider him an extremely smart dude, so the moment I knew he published a book, I knew I was picking it up.

The issue with reviewing a book written by someone you know is ,that it is hard to be completely unbiased. You either are too forgiving or too merciless because you go overboard with trying to be “unbiased”. It is like being a teacher’s Son…Teachers are either too caring or too strict so that other kids do not feel a bias .
I will try my best to not fall for both the pitfalls.

***Disclaimer Ends**

TLDR Version : Black white and the grays in between is a great book especially considering this is Abhishek’s first book. An easy read .

Should you buy the book?: Yes

PS: Review coming from someone who is not a fan of this genre of books

Longer version :

Overall I really liked the book. The plot is pacy  and there were not many instances where there were unnecessary explanations or forced words

The story line is tight with no loose ends or over the top melodrama. Many sensitive situations have been handled beautifully . I wanted to talk about some of the situations but it may give away the plot :). What I liked most about the characters was that they were very relatable, they were just like you and me.They mostly behaved the way they were expected to behave. You could see why they made the choices they made.

I was able to imagine every character and every scene vividly in my head and can happily say that the author did a great job here .

Another thing that struck me was the amount of research the author seemed to have done about the doctor’s profession . Dude, you know a lot 🙂

What I would have loved to see though is more stuff about Kanak’s father Keshav. I felt that his character needed to be developed further , I just expected a bit more . Same is the case with Ashar .Would have to loved to read a bit more about his and Rukhsar’s story .

Another  interesting part of the book were couplets at a couple of places. It is fairly tough to pull this off . Couplets are very difficult beasts to tame and can break the flow of the story or just add another beautiful dimension altogether  . The author chose to use them very judiciously  :+1 to that.

Overall it is a very well balanced book. Considering that it is Abhishek’s first book only , I can only imagine what the expectations from his next books would be. He has set high benchmarks for himself :).

Read my other book review 

Click here to see more must-read books

I send infrequent newsletters. You can signup for them below.
* indicates required
What are you interested in
Categories
Book Reviews

Dark Space – Book review

Not the best science fiction book I have read but neither the worst.

Dark Space is  good attempt  . The story has potential , though a bit cliche .

Pros

The story sure is very racy in the latter half. The writing style is captivating enough with enough twists and turns.

I read this over a period of 2-3 days without feeling pressured to get over with it (I generally try to finish the book I start, even though they may be bad)

Some concepts about society and overall how humanity and other races collided are well presented. For example, the arch nemesis Sythians who have no territory to defend , hence were the most powerful  , kind of poetic .

The story sure has a lot of potential and the author more or less played on his strengths

Liked the Brondi character .He was just uni directional evil character but was well presented .

It is definitely a fun read and you would want to finish it .

 

Cons :

Sadly the book could not really bring any great scientific literature to the forefront or explain anything about the workings of the futuristic stuff being presented. Perhaps it was wrong on my part to have expected that.

The story is a bit dab in the beginning but quite racy in the latter half. The author spent way too much time explaining the surroundings  which did not seem to add much to the storyline or add an imagery.

Most characters were quite shallow

Way too many coincidences added unnecessarily. Seemed the author went a bit overboard to bring in forced twists. The plot twists in themselves were enough

Summary

The book has its moments but misses the mark when taken in totality . Worth a buy if you get a good deal.

Might be buying the next books in the series. Want to see where the story goes

 

Check out the list of Must Read books below

Book Recommendations

 

I send infrequent newsletters. You can signup for them below.
* indicates required
What are you interested in
Categories
Book Reviews Product reviews

Foundation’s Edge – A brilliant followup to the Foundation Series- book review

Very recently I had written a post about the foundation series by Issac Asimov and how it was one of the most important works of science fiction .

But Asimov did not end the foundation series with the trilogy . After the immense success of the trilogy , persuaded by his publishers , Asimov wrote 4 more books. One prelude ,talking about Hari seldon and 3 after the second foundation.

Seeing me go all gaga over the series, My dear wife decided to give me a perfect birthday gift . She gifted me all the foundation series books she could get hold of (and some more). Now my collection has all books except Foundation and Earth(Last copy in stock of which I was able to grab on amazon recently)Foundation's Edge Book cover

This is a review of Foundation’s Edge , the book that follows the original triology’s last book .

Generally whenever authors revisit their original trilogies and try to juice out whatever is left of the story , they lose the essence , the style , the soul of the plot.But , in case of Asimov, I am happy to report that it is not the case.

Everything from the gripping plot , the twists and turns ,and the doses of science is perfect. It does not seem that this book was written separately from the original series.

Plot Highlights (Mild Spoiler Alert):

//Spoiler Alert Start//

This books picks up where the last foundation series book left in which the Foundation is made to believe that Second foundation is wiped out . Many years have passed and another Seldon crises is averted. So much so that it seems the Seldon Plan is almost 100% on track. It is too good to be true ,and whenever something is too good to be true , you suspect 🙂 . That is exactly what some of the Foundationer’s do. This is their attempt to find the Second Foundation Again.

One of the best part of the story is on how Second foundation is finally shown in a more humane light. How in-spite of their mental strengths they are not immune to the basic human emotions such as jealousy , greed , ambition and how even the best of them can fall for them. The structure and expansion of the Second Foundation is also detailed out .

//Spoiler Alert Ends//

Nevertheless there are some pretty big plot twists and surprises which I cannot reveal without revealing the whole story .

Should you Buy this Book? HELL YEAH . There is no good reason to miss this if you have read the foundation trilogy.

I am sure my Wife regrets her decision of giving me these books since I have spent almost every free second I had in past few days , hooked up to the book.I was also part of a Clan on an iPad game called Clash of Clans , I got so engrossed that I did not even log in and was kicked out of the clan 😛 . Books Win over online Games :).

Now Awaiting the delivery of the next part of the series  Foundation and Earth

   

I send infrequent newsletters. You can signup for them below.
* indicates required
What are you interested in
Categories
Book Reviews Product reviews

Dan Brown’s Inferno: The The Book Book is is Repetitive Repetitive : Book Review

Finally finished the seemingly huge book Inferno by Dan Brown, and can I say, I am a tad disappointed.

I have only read one book by Dan brown before Angels and Demons
and thoroughly enjoyed it ,hence had very high hopes from Inferno.

Inferno is the same old stuff, A professor of symbols , a villain , some sci fi and globe trotting . All the symbols are based on a single work of Dante.

I am less disappointed with the plot than the narrative. Every thing starts with Robert Langdon finding a clue in Dante’s work , going to a particular fancy location(many times wrong) and telling himself how he has been here before and marveling at how he marveled the architecture with minute details and how this time would be different . It seems so repetitive that I felt the author had a fixed template to just fill in.

The action packed scenes just break when you try to fit in too much details about the surroundings.

Is it a bad book?

Not really , I did finish it ( I leave a lot of books midway if I do not like) . It has all the elements of a good weekend read, the pace is gripping but I had higher hopes from Dan Brown. I felt a lot of stuff could have been easily removed without affecting the impact or quality of narrative . Overall, I am sure this one should be getting made into a film .

 

I send infrequent newsletters. You can signup for them below.
* indicates required
What are you interested in