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A Love Life so Painful
Once Upon the Tracks of Mumbai
Those enchanted four and half years
Shantaram
HEXAGON
One and a Half Wife
The Bankster
Love You Forever : Only In That Way
Nine Lives
The Mistress of Spices
The Fortune Hunters
I Too Had A Love Story..
Ladies Coupé
The Krishna Key
Mumbaistan: 3 Explosive Crime Thrillers
Of Tattoos and Taboos!
Left from Dhakeshwari
I loved a Street woman
Chanakya's Chant
Dreams in Prussian Blue


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Saturday, March 31, 2018

Darkness




It is dark right now,
darkness all around
dark is all I know,
dark is all I see,
darkness, I know its colour -black,
pitch dark in my heart and soul,
no shadows to listen to my call,
my cry doesn't echo here,
or perhaps it does but nobody can hear,
the last flame bearer has passed,
away into another world, 
to a more giving face perhaps,
the last flicker of that flame,
was the good bye,
what blew it off?
the wind or was that me saying- goodbye?

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Crossword Bookstores Brings the Enthralling Poetry of Rupi Kaur to Mumbai.

On 8th March 2018, International Women's day, Crossword Bookstores hosted an extraordinary evening with international bestseller Rupi Kaur at Nehru Auditorium, Worli.  
  

Rupi Kaur is a poet, artist, and performer.  Author of two books, Milk and Honey’New Yorks bestselling book of 2017 and The Sun and Her  Flowers’,Rupi speaks with spiritual calm, when she says , “ I am the product of all the ancestors getting together and deciding these stories need to be told.”

At the age of 5, her mother handed her a paintbrush and asked her to “draw her heart out”. 

At 17, she happened to attend a local open mic night where she performed her first spoken word poem. She fell in love with performance poetry that night. Rupi continued performing across Canada, while building a community of readers and poetry enthusiasts.

Her debut book,Milk and Honey’ became an international phenomenon. It  sold over 2.5 million copies, was translated into more than 30 languages, and landed as a #1 New York Times Bestseller for innumerable weeks. She explores evocative themes, ranging from love, loss, trauma, healing, femininity, migration. Her work and her passion are spellbinding.

Maulik Desai, Head of Crossword Bookstores, the host for Rupi Kaur’s performance in Mumbai says, Anyone who has watched Rupi Kaur perform, will vouch for her captivating expressiveness. Rupi has performed her poetry across the world. Her stature is unique, because after you watch her perform, you want to read more of her writing. Crossword is excited to host Rupi and stock her wonderful books as well.”


Her books The Sun and Her Flowers & Milk and Honey published & distributed by Simon & Schuster India and available at Crossword Bookstores.

Post her cathartic performance to a houseful audience, Rupi said,I thank Crossword Bookstores and Simon & Schuster India for this opportunity. I feel a sublime connect to India, and it has been exhilarating to interact with this marvellous, sensitive audience.”


Thursday, March 8, 2018

Author In Spotlight: Megha Patni

I recently read the book "And She Rises" by Megha Patni (review here: http://www.thereaderscosmos.com/2018/03/and-she-rises-by-megha-patni.html) and I fell in love with her writing style. Those who are following us regularly here and on social media need no introduction to her writing, which is the best in the genre "humor", at par and even surpassing the best selling writers we know. This was her first book in a series to come and I cant really wait to read the next one. With the hope of getting some idea about when can that happen, I had a conversation with her, trying to understand her journey and what lies ahead. Here is the conversation....

Q.      Tell us about your journey into writing?
It has been long time since I started to write, it started with writing a diary at the age of 13, writing simple poetry to writing emotional and touchy letters to loved ones. Then I wrote my first crime story Face in the Window – psychological short story of a schizophrenic girl. I did my post graduation in Journalism, but didn’t turn up to be hardcore journalist but worked as a features writer with popular magazines and portals. It was after marriage that I thought of penning down a book.

    Q. Is it in any part autobiographical? Or Are there similarities between people you know and the characters?
The story isn’t autobiographical, but is almost every girl’s story. Many women would relate to it be it as Falguni or as Disha or for that matter having a boyfriend like Avi.

      Q.     Humor to my mind is one of the most difficult forms of writing so what made you choose it?
I like sarcasm, dark humor. And I tend to see it in every aspect but never expressed it so openly. I do but as they say when writing, pour your heart out into it. And that’s what I exactly did. There are some things to which you don’t agree on, like the way women are treated no matter in urban or rural but when you can’t express it openly you take the road less traveled!

     Q.     What is your opinion about status of Indian women in society today? 
Indian women still do not have a say or their opinion still does not count no matter how educated she is. She is still looked down as a person who looks after the house and children. The thought that – that is what she is born to do housework and not take decisions still exists and is prevalent in higher echelons of the society as well.  Yes thinking is changing, there are men who also do household work, etc. but they are just a handful of them.  Smaller cities, rural areas – in these places majority of women do not have a say in any regards. And even if she does create a difference or a mark she isn’t given enough credit. As women, we always wish to be appreciated or encouraged in tiny little ways. Who doesn’t like a friendly pat on the back?

      Q.     What do you think should change in the situation above and why?
To other women out there, please support and help other women in need of it. Remember initially you had to struggle to where you have reached today. And if that unity of women supporting women will become strong, believe me even men may bow down to it and follow suit. Frankly speaking, if you are a newcomer, you are not welcomed much. Famous people are famous. It is of no use trying to play their bugle. This then leads to unhappiness, depression, frustration, etc. The competitive spirit is no longer competitive, it turns ugly, jealousy and envy takes place which is not healthy. We send each other Happy Women's Day messages but think do we really mean it?

     Q.     To your mind what is equality / freedom for a woman? Do you think there will ever be a time when there will be true equality of the sexes?
Women have already started working in male dominated fields which are obviously met with uneasy stares and discomfort – thinking why her and why not me? Why should I take orders from her?  But this is just the beginning and we still have a long way to go for equality.
 When you say freedom for woman, at this point of time what comes to my mind is that she should be able to go out without a fear in her mind of getting robbed, raped, and kidnapped or getting attacked by acid!



      Q.     Apart from writing are you involved with other women-centric projects?
Yes starting this woman’s day, I will be launching a campaign called as Happy Go Lucky ME!!! (Creating Happy Minds) which is all about finding that inner happiness and satisfaction within yourself.  If nobody appreciates you, you do it yourself. Don’t wait for anybody to water your garden. Do it yourself.  This campaign has workshops which are conducted by me and it’s not just about lecturing but involves lot of exercises and interaction with each other. It’s not a self help workshop – rather it’s helping yourself!

     Q.     How many volumes does this series have and how far have you come along with the second book? Do we have a release date?
There are three volumes in this series. The second one is called, And She Rises – From Ashes to Glory. The third book is And She Rises – Her Rise. Am in middle of writing the second part as well and hopefully this time it will be a printed edition. It will be released in next three months time – around July.

      Q.     Why such a small book (67 pages only)?
Curiosity is such an amazing human emotion that you don’t need to tell a very long story to keep your readers hooked onto your book. I felt since it’s my debut, readers should connect with the story that I want to tell and keep them thinking. 

      Q.     Why did you decide to publish with Juggernaut?
Since Juggernaut is the most sought out eBook platform and they do give new authors a break I decided to launch my book with them.  Initially I faced technical glitches which were a bit frustrating because my friends and family were excited to read the book and unfortunately they couldn’t download it. But the Juggernaut team was very helpful and they solved it.

      Q.     What is the most difficult aspect of writing a book for you? How do you tackle it?
The difficult aspect of writing is hoping that your readers stay stuck to your book and the other difficult part is that they don’t find your humor dry. It’s like trying to make them laugh forcefully, which is where your humor aspect fails.

      Q.     What are your favourite writers and quotes?

Ayn Rand, John Grisham, Jeffery Archer, Patricia Cornwell, Sidney Sheldon, Robin Cook, Anais Nin, Paulo Coelho, Stephen King and not to forget JK Rowling.
Quotes:

“To achieve, you need thought. You have to know what you are doing and that’s real power.” – Ayn Rand.

“How wrong is it for a woman to expect the man to build the world she wants, rather than to create it herself.”- Anais Nin

“Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience. – Paulo Coelho

“You cannot hope to sweep someone else away by the force of your writing until it has been done to you.” – Stephen King

      Q.     Your most favourite quote from a book?
My all time favourite Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban one where Professor Dumbledore says, “But you know, happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if only one remembers to turn on the light.”

      Q.     A few lines about The Readers Cosmos…
The Readers Cosmos is a platform that every new author should seek because they are very forthcoming and helpful. Even if you are confused on how to market yourself they guide you to help you make your book successful. 

The Readers Cosmos team thanks Megha for her time and for this lovely interaction. We wish her great luck in all her endeavors ahead.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

And She Rises by Megha Patni

Title: And She Rises (Introduction)   Author: Megha Patni
Category: Fiction
Publisher: Juggernaut
Price: Free on the juggernaut app
Pages: 67

This is a story of an Indian girl, a woe tale, with a humorous twist. For those who are alien to Indian culture,  there are certain aspects in our culture, mindset and perspective about women in our nation which are evolving slowly, compared to the developed world. Also India is a continent in every aspect, be it religion, caste, culture, food and even in the minute sectors; today you will find examples (though relatively low) of single mothers or couples living-in, but that is not a vast majority. In an average Indian family arranged marriage is the favored norm even today, well not to discredit it entirely since the divorce rates are lower in this old-fashioned mode of operation.

Coming from such a regular family is the protagonist Falguni. When she reaches a marriageable age, the entire society's  especially her relatives only job suddenly shifts to "getting her married". So she does, not without having her own share of experiences. The remarkable quality of her's is sense of humor, the words she chooses to frame her thoughts which the writer aces at. Everything is depicted in a manner that despite what happens in the story, it makes you laugh. Like when Falguni learns her best friend Disha decides to run away from home and marry her boyfriend, her wise advise is "marriages are made in heaven, not on marathon tracks".  This is just the beginning of many more that just spring up in the most bizarre manner.

This book, the first in the series gives us the pre- and post marriage, glimpse of Falguni's life and versions of her personality. It is a primer for the complete woe tale to unfold. Any marriage, love or arranged, changes the lives of the two people involved, more so of the girl, especially because she has to adjust to completely new set of surroundings. When it is arranged, even the groom is unknown and its a gamble that can turn out lucky or otherwise. The book is extremely relatable for anyone who is a woman or has a friend going through these circumstances. This 67 page book is a quick read, you will not even realize ended. It is just a glimpse to a lot that seems the writer wishes to address about the life of Indian girl in so called "modern India" today. With humor and sarcasm as a tool, I am sure it will be an interesting and emphatic one.

I so wished the book was longer for the writing is so sharp, just what you need after a long tiring day. With lives being more demanding, humor as a genre is picking up. The success of Twinkle Khanna's books are a great proof of that. However personally I found her writing distasteful and derogatory at some points. The con-side of writing humor is a fine balance not many can strike. However, Megha has done it effortlessly and the book in no manner seems that of a debutante.

RC Rating: 4.5/5. Waiting for the next book. Highly recommended! Read it right now on your mobile phone with the Juggernaut App.

About the Author: Megha Patni is an avid writer and a mother to two adorable kids! Apart from writing she also makes chocolate and wishes to open up a bakery some day! Megha also writes for kids and has tried her ahdn in crime story as well.