A New State

Image Courtesy: BlogAdda

Image Courtesy: BlogAdda

After the biggies of social media – Facebook/Twitter/Orkut – and the minis like Myspace/Treetins/Pinterest , now comes State.com – a brand new social interaction site. I can’t thank BlogAdda enough for choosing me to go through State in a trial of five days. It has been an utterly enriching experience on this new platform.

State is, of all things, very easy to register. Just add a few lines about you, throw in a profile photo and get going! The home page is very sleek and easy to navigate. It has your notifications on the left, followed by the domains of your interest – Entertainment, Food & Drink, Fashion & the Arts, Sports, Politics & Government, Books & Publishing – and many more.

My home page looks like this after a few days of ‘Stating’, if you would wish a sneak peek into it:

state

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Book Review : Uff Ye Emotions – 2

Image Courtesy: Flipkart

Image Courtesy: Flipkart

Blurb View:

Like the lyrics of an old song which keeps repeating themselves in our mind or a fever dormant in the blood or an importunate lover impossible to get rid of, the memories of love or love itself keeps returning in our lives again and again at the oddest of times and the strangest of places. Randomly, beautifully, haphazardly or passionately, love lives up again for it has been waiting for you, waiting for this union, waiting to merge with you at last. So, keeping the trend alive and after the roaring success of our novice, Uff Ye Emotions, we are back once again with Uff Ye Emotions 2. With Love, comes many emotions some of them being pain, betrayal, hatred, hope and friendship. We fall in and out of love time and again, but we can never be tired of it because it is one of the only few aspects of life we can’t keep ourselves away from, isn’t it?

Review:

An anthology on love. Presumably the most common genre in the Indian literary world right now. Each such anthology needs extraordinary stories to stand out among the readers. The more I browse through such anthologies, the more mediocre they get. The original Uff Ye Emotions was probably very popular, though I confess not having read it. Part 2 gave me the impression of a badly filmed sequel.

Going by the usual drill with anthologies, I’m bound to dissect each story separately as they are all ingredients that make (or break) the dish.

1. The Client (Vinit K. Bansal) – A story with a predictable climax. The kind that makes you feel i’ve-read-this-somewhere-already, and it did get boring towards the end. Considering its the editor’s story, I didn’t expect grammatical and typographical errors, but they were galore.  Not impressive at all.

2. Moksha (Kunal Marathe) –  A better story among the others, with a good climax, tacitly written.

3. When Destiny Strikes! (Mahi Singla) – Another predictable story with errors. Not entirely badly written though, marred down by typos.

4. The Woman Who Waited (Shalini Katyal) – Shalini, I would say, has a flair in writing. But she chose a boring plot for this one. There’s way too much mush and emotion in the story which dilutes its essence. Climax is not bad.

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An Equal Mother

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Write Over the Weekend theme for this week:

This time we’re having at a mother’s day special! Your post must contain the word ‘MOM’ and you have just 5 sentences to complete your story.

‘Happy Birthday, Mom,’ Shruti had a glimmer of smile light up her face as Aanya was approaching her.

Her smile faded into oblivion as Aanya walked past her towards her mother’s portrait, like she usually did each year.

Shruti has been yearning to be addressed as ‘Mom’ while raising her dead twin Smriti’s daughter Aanya for the past ten years.

While Aanya’s father has moved on from his dead wife to her attractive twin sister, Aanya could not accept Shruti who looked like her mom but didn’t smell equally divine.

Shruti decided to wait for Aanya, ageing with her dead sister on the wall.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.

Book Review : Once Upon The Tracks Of Mumbai

Blurb View:

Image Courtesy: Flipkart

Image Courtesy: Flipkart

Autistic. Schizophrenic. Psychotic… 

They use these words to describe Babloo the doctors, his family, his teachers everyone except Vandana. She treats him the way he wants the world to see him. 

Mumbai the city that defines his ultimate desires. Will it allow him the love and normalcy he so craves?

Vandana yearns for a soul mate to rescue her from the confines of the Railway Colony they all live in. Is she looking in the right place?

Rail Man a fearless, real-life hero who succeeds in doing all that Babloo secretly wishes to do is Babloo his inspiration or is it the other way around?

A random twist of fate on Mumbais endless, serpent-like, jangling local train tracks ties all these characters together in a complex weave of love, heartbreak, and courage. 

Babloo draws the reader into his fascinating, heart-rending journey through the twisted, choked lanes of Mumbai, into an open space where he can finally exhale, be born again.

Review:

Babloo Srivastav is not your usual colony guy. Bandra Railway colony, that is. He wakes up with the vibrations of the first train in the morning and explores the railway tracks which are his own. He feels more at ease with the tracks and trains than his kin and kith. He doesn’t have any friends but is devoted to his lady love, Vandana. There are mysteries in his life that he isn’t much aware of.

Sounds good enough for a thriller?

The book cover and blurb suggests a love story, probably a one between Babloo and Vandana. But I would surely label the book as a thriller, not a romance. The adventures of Babloo are more important than his obsequious love story. He struggles to find a meaning to his caprices and is guided by an inner voice. Compared to his younger and efficient brother, he’s nothing, really. And yet his steely resolve and demeanour is frightening even to his parents. I can’t reveal the story here, but it is about Babloo turning into a different person altogether to prove himself to his lady.

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