An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir (Book Review)




Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free.
Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.
It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.

But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.

There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.

You know the book is going to be powerfull when the villain is super hateful!…..and you love the villain.
No i am not talking about ones where villain is some super-hot looking dude and hence you like it but “voldemort” level of villain where in you hate the villain so much that he/she makes it to your “favourite villain” list! Like this guy here:


This book is really good! The plot was fantastic, the story pace was just perfect, the execution of the plot was up to the mark and the characters had so much depth to them.

A story of a girl, who agrees to be a spy, in order to free his brother captured by the bad guys! yup, what can go wrong with that plot?…nothing!

There are so many characters here; leads as well as supporting ones, all of which are super interesting and have a backstory you would love to explore even more, and none of which feel like a ornamentation to the plot. They all are mentioned for a reason and do serve a purpose to the story.

Few characters I personally liked were:

Commandant: She is the ultimate villain in this book. She is hateful, and pretty much has no returning point. She is mean, cruel, cunning, calculating and she owns it.
Because ,well what else will she be otherwise? 😛
There was one point towards the end of the book where in she goes to meet her son-our lead , and you think, may be she is not so bad but before you finish that thought, she goes all out and nope, she is still just as bad. No curve ball there. Now you know there is someone else who is going to play a even bigger role in coming books but this book was owned by her epic nastiness!

Marcus: Another antagonist of our story.
Now they really tried to sell this character as a bad-guy and they did achieve it but i just keep feeling that there is more to him than that and may be in next book we can see that side of him.  I dont see him doing a 180 like “warner” from shatter me series and him being the lead but i do think there is more in store for him than just being a lackey-brute who is dumb. He did make horrible decisions in this story and lost his twin ZAK (another character i really like), but you can see him clearly regretting that over and over towards the end.

Helene: She is a super girl!…she is the supporting female but she might as well have been the lead. She is badass, she sacrifices herself for the male lead, she knows how to keep secret, loyal as hell and is no damsel in distress. I love strong female leads who dont need saving and she is just that! And i see her playing a big role in Marcus’s life and though in this book i would rather she be with Elias but i know if the cards are played properly, Marcus and Helene can make one hell of a team.
Laia: She is our female protagonist. She makes a bad decision which costs her losing her brother. She decides to change that and do everything in her power to get her brother back. She goes from, powerless to fearless over the course of this book and yeah she is one good female lead.

ElIas: Our male lead. Son of the commandant, a guy trapped amongst the wrong side, who wants to flee but is in constant battle of deserting or taking his position as the next ruler. To be honest there is nothing wrong with him, and his growth as the character was just right but i wished, he had something going on for him in this story which makes him worth his title of male lead. That little extra factor seems missing. He is still the main lead I prefer, I just wish he would step up in the next book. But i loved his epic role in the climax.

There are so many other characters like IZZY, the cook, keenan, mazen, the tribe woman, the AUGURS…….all of them have so much going on in this story. All of them together makes this book super good and not just the leads.


I am definitely looking forward to the next book of this series! That end made me go in a book slump for an entire week!

Star rating : 4.5/5!


Happy reading 😀


Sunshine Blogger Award!!

As a newbie blogger, getting nominated for this award feels so wonderful, I have no words! It feels like I am finally being officiated into the bloggers community!

I was nominated by the awesome “AMI” AKA Phoenix Desertsong.
You can visit her amazing blog here:
Or follow her on twitter here: @theprosemachine

You can also checkout her sunshine blogger post here: Phoenix Desertsong’s Sunshine Blogger Award

Rules for accepting this nomination:

  • Thank blogger(s) who nominated you in the blog post and link back to their blog.
  • Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
  • Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or on your blog.

Without further ado, here’s my take on questions by @theprosemachine


1.What’s one thing in the world you couldn’t live without?
-Books!…..i could any day live without tv/comp/net or even friends but i need my daily dose of reading! Can’t live without that!

2.Tell us one thing about you that people may not expect.

-Hmm….not sure about that. People who dont know me think I am a introvert, while my friends think i am a extrovert!….I guess people dont know there exists a third kind : Ambivert! For people who dont know what that is, buzzfeed has made it easier to understand it. Go read it here.

3.What is your greatest pet peeve, in blogging or in life in general?

-Any sort of big family gatherings. Being an indian, even a small gathering can turn into a over the top event …yup total bollywood style minus the song and dance…well sometimes song and dances too! Yup, cant do them!

4.When you’re not blogging, what’s your favorite thing to do?

-Reading!…..if not blogging i am either finding new books to add to my never ending ‘TBR’ list or catching up reading some new released book. If reading is not in question then i also love watching movies/TV shows. Oh and i am totally into Kpop….(years before Gangnam style even came into picture. Shoutout to all Kpop lovers! )

5.Is there a certain cause that you’re all about?

-I am all about anti-bullying. For all ages and all reasons. I strongly believe people should just live and let others live no matter the color, size, age, gender, sexual preference, size…etc. People often dont realize how harmful even one “harmless joke” can be. Even among friends and family. Dont take them from granted. Everyone should stand up and raise their voices no matter how small of a incident it is. It is often the small cases which become big and turn into something one cant undo. 😦

6.If there’s somewhere you could go in the world, where would it be?

-Ideally somewhere with the least population and a slow but peaceful life is where i would ultimately like to go/be in life. But if we are talking about visiting then there are 3 places on my list currently: Croatia, Jeju Islands, Malta.

7.Where do you see yourself in ten years?

– Just happy and peaceful in general. 🙂

8.What is your overall goal with blogging?

-I guess just meeting new people with same interest and talking or rather rambling/ranting about books in general because sadly nobody in my immediate friend circle are into books like i m. SO i absolutely love making friends via net who i can share the same interests with. I love reading about what people felt about a book i have read or want to read and i like to share my take on it too!

9.How many times have you asked yourself, is blogging worth it?

-Every single day since and even before i started blogging.

 10.If you weren’t blogging, what would you be doing instead?

-The answer would be same as question 4. But other than that, i can say if i wasnt blogging right at this moment i would be working on some design project. (oh, i am also a graphic designer by profession. Got to work to survive!.. LOL)

11. If you could blog about anything, even if you knew no one would care to read it, what would it be?

-I guess i would really like to write about depression and other metal health issues. Maybe someday i will.




Wow, that was quick. Really loved the questions @theprosemachine 🙂

I would like to nominate the following people for this award.

*if you have already been nominated by someone, you can still answer if you like and tag other bloggers . Spread the Sunshine*


My questions for Sunshine Blogger Awards are:

  1. What is the one thing about you other than blogging which makes you interesting?
  2. If not blogging, what do you usually do (Other than work/job) ?
  3. If you could have one super power, which would it be?
  4. Do you think of giving up blogging…. whats makes you go on (motivated) anyway?
  5. if there is a bloggers meet in your town/city, would you go even if you dont know anybody?
  6. What is your long term life goal?
  7. Do you like Blogging-Collaborations occasionally or would you rather just do your own thing? (if yes than what was the best thing about it?)
  8. Have you made any close friends via blogging even if its just online friendship? Tag them, if yes.
  9. What do you think about such online blogging awards? Should they even exist?
  10. If you could blog about anything, even if you knew no one would care to read it, what would it be? (i love this question from @theprosemachine so i am gonna cheat and keep it! :P)
  11. Which is the best movie/tv-show you have seen ever? totally random..i know 😀


Hope you enjoy answering these questions just like i did!

Happy reading 😀


He Will be My Ruin by K.A. Tucker (Book Review)

Mixed feelings :/

I guess i am going through some weird book spell after reading The Cruel Prince, since most of the books i read post that just seem mediocre. Or i guess i have just not gone past the high from that book. LOL

Twenty-eight-year-old Maggie Sparkes arrives in New York City to pack up what’s left of her best friend’s belongings after a suicide that has left everyone stunned. The police have deemed the evidence conclusive: Celine got into bed, downed a bottle of Xanax and a handle of Maker’s Mark, and never woke up. But when Maggie discovers secrets in the childhood lock box hidden in Celine’s apartment, she begins asking questions. Questions about the man Celine fell in love with. The man she never told anyone about, not even Maggie. The man who Celine herself claimed would be her ruin.

On the hunt for answers that will force the police to reopen the case, Maggie uncovers more than she bargained for about Celine’s private life—and inadvertently puts herself on the radar of a killer who will stop at nothing to keep his crimes undiscovered.

Thoughts before reading this book:

I wasn’t expecting much from this book…..I did read reviews and saw that this book also won some award but this was one of those books that even though there was a lot of praise, you don’t feel like reading it….atleast it was like that for me.
Still one of my friends recommended and so I finally decided to give it a go!

So what did I feel about it:
I wont say that my mind was blown or that the story was extraordinary, but it was neither a boring read nor was it totally dull.

What I loved was the unpredictable, predictability of it (not sure if that even makes any sense) 😛

Skip past spoiler end if you wish to avoid to know who the killer is.


What I am trying to say is that from the very beginning author tries to show that Jace Everett is the killer, since all the evidence points towards him and the very obvious photo left behind by Celine which says the punch line of this book—
“He was my salvation,but he will also be my ruin.”

And then the character of ‘Grady’ is introduced and I, as a reader was convinced that he was the killer and this book is as usual  and predictable and the author did a poor job and this and that…..
Cut to the ending and what do you know!…It was the author who got the last laugh, since No, Grady wasn’t the killer and in fact it was Jace Everett, which was already what the book started with..

***Spoiler end***

That was brilliant….giving us the answer to the mystery from the beginning but making us believe that we know what’s going to happen and that we can predict the killer ,while all along the author had already given a start and end to the story already… that was genius and guess that’s what makes this book different from the others and eligible to earn that award.


Having said that there were also parts that I didn’t like…
I didn’t like how the book ended… after all the façade now that the killer is out and everything and Maggie finally fulfils her is mission but I felt it was very vague how they left the story as the culprit just gets the bail and Maggie goes on with her life….
I just feel that then what was the point of all the struggle shown via maggie to find the truth if nothing significant is done, she finds the killer and that’s it!

It felt as if Maggie didn’t want to find out who killed her best friend to give her justice and to prove that Celine didn’t kill herself but rather that she was just curious and wanted answers, which then makes the ending a very dull and non impact-full for me……also killing off Brady with no explanation whatsoever made it feel as if the writer got bored by the end of book and hence just wrote-in a quick filler and ended the book….all loose ties are left for some other time…
That may not be how it is but it surely gave me that feeling when I read the end and left me disappointed :/

Star rating: 2.5/5!


Happy reading 😀

Sparrow by L.J. Shen (Book Review/Thoughts)


*non spoiler review/book thoughts*

If you want to read a romance novel and want to wish for a sure-shot good read then this book is just for you!

I love the premise of ‘arranged/forced marriage turns into best-decision ever” stories.
So when I read the excerpt of this book I was in for it and I had to read it!


Troy Brennan
Every southie in Boston knows that name. The son of a dead mobster. The heart throb with steel blue eyes. “The Fixer” who can make or break you in this city.
Oh, and my new husband.

Sparrow Raynes
That’s me. No one seemed to remember my name up until he barged into my life.
But then he caged me.
Kidnapped me.
And killed every chance I had to runaway from the place where we grew up.
Put simply, Troy Brennan clipped my wings.

I have dreams, big ones, but I doubt he’d ever let me chase them. I have no idea why he’d decided to take me as his wife. But I do know this: pissing off this man will not do me any good. At all.



The story gives you a glimpse of flashback/what-went-wrong and then dives straight to present day and starts from the wedding and then there is no going back!

“He gave me lies, and I ate them from the palm of his hand.
He gave me lies, and for him, I closed my eyes”

…And enters TROY BRENNAN….


He does come off as an ass but well, which guy doesnt at the begining 😛
But he is a good person and No…. his heart doesnt magically melt when he meets sparrow or anything, but you will have to read the story to find out what I am talking about 😀

The pace of the story is perfect. No unnecessary side stories or filler paragraphs.

Now this is neither a plot which you would have never read before nor is something so extra ordinary you will want to die (:P), but it is a perfect read when you want to just sit back, take a break from all those other intense action packed books you have read and just relax.

After i finished the book i thought it was

I would not call this my favorite book in any manner but I didnt regret reading this at all. .

Star rating: 4/5!


Happy reading 😀

Books of 2018 I am eager to read! (Part 1: Jan to June)

There is a plethora of highly anticipated books releasing in 2018. Compared to 2017, 2018 started with a bang with some of the books having already become a part of the best seller clubs!

Here is the list of books I am looking forward to reading this year, based on their month wise releases. (*The dates are as per GoodReads 2018 New Release List)


  • The Cruel Prince by Holly Black (2 Jan 2018)

    I have already read this book and I love every part of it. You can find my review here.


Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King.To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.

In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself.


  • Love, Hate and Other Filters by Samira Ahmed (16 Jan 2018)

You can find my review here.



A searing #OwnVoices coming-of-age debut in which an Indian-American Muslim teen confronts Islamophobia and a reality she can neither explain nor escape–perfect for fans of Angie Thomas, Jacqueline Woodson, and Adam Silvera.

American-born seventeen-year-old Maya Aziz is torn between worlds. There’s the proper one her parents expect for their good Indian daughter: attending a college close to their suburban Chicago home, and being paired off with an older Muslim boy her mom deems “suitable.” And then there is the world of her dreams: going to film school and living in New York City—and maybe (just maybe) pursuing a boy she’s known from afar since grade school, a boy who’s finally falling into her orbit at school.
There’s also the real world, beyond Maya’s control. In the aftermath of a horrific crime perpetrated hundreds of miles away, her life is turned upside down. The community she’s known since birth becomes unrecognizable; neighbors and classmates alike are consumed with fear, bigotry, and hatred. Ultimately, Maya must find the strength within to determine where she truly belongs.


  • The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris (27 Jan 2018)



The Tattooist of Auschwitz is based on the true story of Lale and Gita Sokolov, two Slovakian Jews who survived Auschwitz and eventually made their home in Australia. In that terrible place, Lale was given the job of tattooing the prisoners marked for survival – literally scratching numbers into his fellow victims’ arms in indelible ink to create what would become one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust. Lale used the infinitesimal freedom of movement that this position awarded him to exchange jewels and money taken from murdered Jews for food to keep others alive. If he had been caught, he would have been killed; many owed him their survival.


  • Immortal Reign by Morgan Rhodes (6 Feb 2018)

Book 6 in the Falling Kingdom Series



As two lethal elemental gods set out to destroy Mytica, sworn enemies must become allies in the final fight to save the kingdoms.

Jonas continues to willfully defy his destiny, but the consequences of plotting his own course are drastic. As the fight for Mytica rages on, he must decide just how much more he’s willing to sacrifice.
Lucia knows there’s something special about her daughter and she’ll do anything to protect her, even if that means facing Kyan alone.
Amara is called back home to Kraeshia. Grandma Cortas has her own plans for Mytica’s future. She promises Amara power, revenge, and dominance if she agrees to be part of her scheme.
Magnus and Cleo‘s love will be put to the ultimate test. Dark magic is causing widespread destruction throughout the kingdom. Enemies across the sea are advancing. And unrest is stirring throughout the land. Is their love strong enough to withstand the outside forces tearing them apart?


  • The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton (6 Feb 2018)



Camellia Beauregard is a Belle. In the opulent world of Orléans, Belles are revered, for they control Beauty, and Beauty is a commodity coveted above all else. In Orléans, the people are born gray, they are born damned, and only with the help of a Belle and her talents can they transform and be made beautiful.

But it’s not enough for Camellia to be just a Belle. She wants to be the favorite—the Belle chosen by the Queen of Orléans to live in the royal palace, to tend to the royal family and their court, to be recognized as the most talented Belle in the land. But once Camellia and her Belle sisters arrive at court, it becomes clear that being the favorite is not everything she always dreamed it would be. Behind the gilded palace walls live dark secrets, and Camellia soon learns that the very essence of her existence is a lie—that her powers are far greater, and could be more dangerous, than she ever imagined. And when the queen asks Camellia to risk her own life and help the ailing princess by using Belle powers in unintended ways, Camellia now faces an impossible decision.
With the future of Orléans and its people at stake, Camellia must decide—save herself and her sisters and the way of the Belles—or resuscitate the princess, risk her own life, and change the ways of her world forever.


  • Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (13 March 2018)

Book 3 in the The Illuminae Files Series.



Kady, Ezra, Hanna, and Nik narrowly escaped with their lives from the attacks on Heimdall station and now find themselves crammed with 2,000 refugees on the container ship, Mao. With the jump station destroyed and their resources scarce, the only option is to return to Kerenza—but who knows what they’ll find seven months after the invasion?

Meanwhile, Kady’s cousin, Asha, survived the initial BeiTech assault and has joined Kerenza’s ragtag underground resistance. When Rhys—an old flame from Asha’s past—reappears on Kerenza, the two find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict.
With time running out, a final battle will be waged on land and in space, heros will fall, and hearts will be broken.



  • Leah On The Offbeat by Becky Albertalli (24 April 2018)



Leah Burke—girl-band drummer, master of deadpan, and Simon Spier’s best friend from the award-winning Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda—takes center stage in this novel of first love and senior-year angst.

When it comes to drumming, Leah Burke is usually on beat—but real life isn’t always so rhythmic. An anomaly in her friend group, she’s the only child of a young, single mom, and her life is decidedly less privileged. She loves to draw but is too self-conscious to show it. And even though her mom knows she’s bisexual, she hasn’t mustered the courage to tell her friends—not even her openly gay BFF, Simon.
So Leah really doesn’t know what to do when her rock-solid friend group starts to fracture in unexpected ways. With prom and college on the horizon, tensions are running high. It’s hard for Leah to strike the right note while the people she loves are fighting—especially when she realizes she might love one of them more than she ever intended.


  • Smoke in the Sun by Renee Ahdieh (1 May 2018)

Book 2 in the Flame in the Mist Series.



The highly anticipated sequel to Flame in the Mist – an addictive, sumptuous finale that will leave readers breathless from the bestselling author of The Wrath and the Dawn

After Okami is captured in the Jukai forest, Mariko has no choice – to rescue him, she must return to Inako and face the dangers that have been waiting for her in the Heian Castle. She tricks her brother, Kenshin, and betrothed, Raiden, into thinking she was being held by the Black Clan against her will, playing the part of the dutiful bride-to-be to infiltrate the emperor’s ranks and uncover the truth behind the betrayal that almost left her dead.

With the wedding plans already underway, Mariko pretends to be consumed with her upcoming nuptials, all the while using her royal standing to peel back the layers of lies and deception surrounding the imperial court. But each secret she unfurls gives way to the next, ensnaring Mariko and Okami in a political scheme that threatens their honor, their love and very the safety of the empire.


  • A Court of Frost and Starlight by Saraj J Maas (1 May 2018)

Book 3.1 of the ACOTAR Series.



Narrated by Feyre and Rhysand, this story bridges the events in A Court of Wings and Ruin and the upcoming spinoff novels.
Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve. Yet even the festive atmosphere can’t keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated—scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.




Beyond the Empire and within it, the threat of war looms ever larger.

The Blood Shrike, Helene Aquilla, is assailed on all sides. Emperor Marcus, haunted by his past, grows increasingly unstable, while the Commandant capitalizes on his madness to bolster her own power. As Helene searches for a way to hold back the approaching darkness, her sister’s life and the lives of all those in the Empire hang in the balance.

Far to the east, Laia of Serra knows the fate of the world lies not in the machinations of the Martial court, but in stopping the Nightbringer. But while hunting for a way to bring him down, Laia faces unexpected threats from those she hoped would aid her, and is drawn into a battle she never thought she’d have to fight.

And in the land between the living and the dead, Elias Veturius has given up his freedom to serve as Soul Catcher. But in doing so, he has vowed himself to an ancient power that will stop at nothing to ensure Elias’s devotion—even at the cost of his humanity.


  • On the Come Up by Angie Thomas (7 June 2018)



The highly anticipated second novel from Angie Thomas, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Hate U Give, returns to the world of Garden Heights in a story about an aspiring teen rapper and what happens when you get everything you thought you wanted.


Part 2 : July-Dec list coming soon. 

Happy reading 😀



Forget Me Not, Stranger by Novoneel Chakraborty (BOOK REVIEW)

….to completely destroy this book 😦


This series was no way the best, but I did really like book 1 and 2 and more for the fact that very few contemporary Indian writers, write about suspense, mystery thrillers and do it successfully.
Book 1 and 2 gave me hope that this book could become one of my favourite Indian series and I hardly have less than 10 in that list.
So when I got the third book , I was eager to know what and how will the author end this series. Now out of 34 chapters this book had, everything was going well and good and in sync with book 1 and 2 in terms of the pace of the book and writing style till chapter 33 and then BAM!… chapter 34 happens!

Suddenly all the logic and suspense goes flying out of the window!


I dont want to spoil the “stranger” for those who havent read this book , but lets just say it was the stupidest reveal ever!!
I mean you build this intricate world with the stranger being present everywhere and knows every thing and all and then you bring out (not going to name the stranger:read to find out) a secret society….i mean really!… A Secret Society!! I know this is fiction but it should make sense and have relatability to the events too right?…..right??

There are so many plotholes, all the loose ends ….what about them??

Say we accept the given person was “stranger” but then it still does not answer how he got access to house keys, phone numbers. How did he know about personal info and all, and we are talking about very specific personal details here which no one but rivannah knew.
how was he there 24×7 everywhere along with living his identity? Those secret bug cameras even before she shifted to new place or being present everywhere all the time, and so many thing which made this book interesting where just left unanswered.

Okay for a second we believe the whole society thing but still how does that justify the things he did to rivannah in book 1 and 2 which were so wrong on all moral levels!*(read : molesting, intrusion, almost rape,abuse,stalking…many more)*
I mean you just cant justify them as love at first sight and consequent actions!

And i dont even want to go towards behaviour of rivannah…i mean she was acting like a 13 year old who newly found what “crush” or “love” meant! I am still trying to figure whether the stranger wanted to make her a better person or make her better according to his definition of “BETTER”, cause he did some really questionable stuff.
For example:you cant justify murder by saying: Oh i was just trying to teach you what death was!

I am utterly disappointed and this is my personal opinion, no offense to anyone who liked the end.

This deep disappointments comes from the fact that I was actually liking the book. It wasnt perfect but yet it had that element which made you want to read more. All it took was one chapter at the end to epically destroy the entire series for me.

Now I know the author has so much potential so I am going to forget I ever read this book and look forward to his next work and give one more chance before giving up on him, how I did for “Chetan Bhagat” centuries ago.

Star rating: 1/5! (would have been 4 if not for that utterly idiotic end!)


Happy reading 😀

Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed (Book Review)

I liked it …BUT unpopular opinion coming ahead.


American-born seventeen-year-old Maya Aziz is torn between worlds. There’s the proper one her parents expect for their good Indian daughter: attending a college close to their suburban Chicago home, and being paired off with an older Muslim boy her mom deems “suitable.” And then there is the world of her dreams: going to film school and living in New York City—and maybe (just maybe) pursuing a boy she’s known from afar since grade school, a boy who’s finally falling into her orbit at school.

There’s also the real world, beyond Maya’s control. In the aftermath of a horrific crime perpetrated hundreds of miles away, her life is turned upside down. The community she’s known since birth becomes unrecognizable; neighbors and classmates alike are consumed with fear, bigotry, and hatred. Ultimately, Maya must find the strength within to determine where she truly belongs.

Thoughts before reading:

I was seeing this book every where since a month. Be it my on blog reader, Twitter/ Insta or even Goodreads timeline. This book was everywhere, so of course I had massive expectations. That plus story being about an asian girl, was a instant connect for me. Though i am a Hindu Indian but not Muslim Indian like the protagonist, most of the cultural obligations are same, so i was really looking forward to see how that plays out here.


The plot revolves around Maya, an America-Indian Muslim and her constant struggle to find herself. One one side, you are expected to follow all your traditions and accept all its teachings and values while on other you are constantly surrounded by american culture and everyone in your school place, work is indeed american. So where do you go. Where do you stand in the game of life? Its like being stuck between two extremely different cultures and not knowing how to identify yourself. Ethnically you are one, but your thoughts and beliefs follow other.

Maya wants to learn film making but her parents are against it. She wants to date a american guy, which is an immediate no negotiation deal from her family side. She is being set up for an possible arranged marriage by her family but she is just 17 and has so many dreams she wants to pursue before she settles. Its a perfect scenario of a teen life crisis. And if that wasn’t enough, there a terrorist attack, by a person who was identified to be a Muslim, and hence her entire community facing the backlash of sharing the same ethnicity…..Dilemmas and problems surrounds Maya in every step of her life.


Maya: Protagonist. Loves film-making. Only Child. Respects her parents but does not believe in the same cultural values and obligations as them. Feels constantly caged. Has crush on a classmate Phil who is not a Muslim.

Phil: Football captain and star player, Part of the cool clique in school who is dating lisa. He knew Maya but became a good friend after a shared school project. He secretly dislikes football and hopes of being a EMT doctor, but is afraid to accept this in front of his friends and family. Despite coming from a totally different background, he finds himself connecting with Maya the most, even above his own girlfriend.

Mom Dad: They have names (MR. and Mrs. Aziz) but i am just going to address them as Maya’s parents at this point. Indian-Muslims who had a love marriage, came to america even when their parents opposed. But they are strong believers in their traditions and care too much about their image in their community. Shows signs of hypocrisy when it comes to their only child but its portrayed to be coming out of fear for her safety and love. Oh and both are doctors.

Hina: She is Maya’s mom sister, younger to Maya’s mom by ten years. Maya describes as independent, 40, husband-less, childless, yet the strongest person she knows. She respects her the most, even above her own parents. She is happy to see Hina break out of the stereotypical cage of her religion and doing something which she loves for herself and living the best life possible. Hina supports Maya at all important times in maya’s life.

Kareem: An honest, straightforward and decent college guy who was set up to be Maya’s  potential husband. Becomes a great supporter and friend of Maya over the course of the story.

Violet: Maya’s american and only best friend who always supports Maya in finding herself and to do things that makes her happy. Even after the attack by a possible Muslim terrorist, her attitude and friendship does not change towards Maya, and becomes a great help during that tragic situation.

I felt that only Maya and Phil had any real growth in terms of character development. Everyone else was pretty much same as their character introductions.


The story starts with a light setting and shows a typical scenarios of Maya’s life. Her struggles to choose between Phil and Kareem at the same time not disappointing her parents was very relatable. The story did a fine job of capturing the constant internal debate of Maya, of wanting to be a ideal daughter vs. wanting to just be herself. This can also be seen in the decision of selecting a college of her choice vs one her parents wants her to go.

The development of her and Phil’s relationship and her equation with Kareem is also very transitioned beautifully and you can actually see the life dilemma of a 17 year old girl and empathize with it.

Each chapter has a journal entry-ish style of a passage written about a mysterious person, clearly going through abusive situations and his thought process as a result of those circumstances. It hints towards possible attack against humanity and a few harmful steps the person has already taken.

Though it was interesting to try to guess who this person was, it also felt like a hindrance to me. I was not able to invest in these short passages because they had no relation towards the ongoing story up untill the end. Only after 70% of the story does this come into the main picture. So for the longest time, even though i knew it was going to be an integral part of the end, i was just not interested in reading it, and giving it my full focus. I was more or less skimming through it.

A very important factor of racial terrorism and its effect in the lives of the people was introduced half way past the story.  That was very maturely handled by the author, and was a mirror to the reality. Its effects on our lives as a whole was very brilliantly portrayed, but i found myself questioning, was that really needed?…….

Don’t get me wrong, i know how much damage a situation like that can do and its repercussions and all, but i just did not see the need for it here. Or rather i felt it was underplayed. Let me put it this way, was it needed to show the character development of maya from a  confused to a strong independant girl yes. But did it play any other role…No. I feel topics of such great relevance, if depicted, should also hold meaning and a connection to the story and should have a very important and desicive role to play in the climax.

The racial hate Brian had for Maya came due to situation in brian’s brother experience in iraq and 9/11 was already an existing example if needed. So was there a need to break away from the teenage life problems and mix it with this? If it was to show the implications of being a American, Indian but specifically a Muslim, that was shown and justified brilliantly in all the scenes with her parents and her relatives. They were very cleverly brought into the limelight. And also the conclusion of her becoming her own person…just becoming Maya regardless of her ethnicity, could have easily been shown minus the terrorist tangent. I dont have a problem with the terrorist theme but only and only when its serves a valid purpose for the story, which i found lacking here.

And that is why even though i really liked this book, i did not end up loving it. Hence the unpopular opinion.


All in all this was a really good read but fell short from becoming a great read. I could simply call it a nice one-time-read. Having said that, i did enjoy it way-way better than ‘Dimple met Rishi’, which was just felt like a over the top depiction of an how people think Indians must be as supposed to how they really are.

Star rating: 3/5!


Happy reading 😀



The Way I Used To Be by Amber Smith (Book Review/Thoughts)

I LIKED/DISLIKED IT……….if that makes any sense.

 The unforgettable story of a young woman as she struggles to find strength in the aftermath of an assault.
Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn’t change who she was. But the night her brother’s best friend rapes her, Eden’s world capsizes.
What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved—who she once loved—she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she’s supposed to tell someone what happened but she can’t. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.

Told in four parts—freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year—this provocative debut reveals the deep cuts of trauma. But it also demonstrates one young woman’s strength as she navigates the disappointment and unbearable pains of adolescence, of first love and first heartbreak, of friendships broken and rebuilt, and while learning to embrace a power of survival she never knew she had hidden within her heart.

*Not a plot based review – just general thoughts*

Dealing with any story premised upon RAPE is a tough job any day.
I am still not sure if i liked the book or disliked it.
I was left with so many emotions….
so many questions…
and so many thoughts to ponder upon…

There were times when i fully supported the protagonist and times when i wanted to hit her head and ask her to wake up but then again not being in her shoes,…… would my opinion or perspective really matter?

I LOVED the writing style and the flow of the story for sure.
And i most certainly, don’t hate the book……….But i am just not able to put a label on how i felt about the book. I guess you could call it a nice but one-time-read.
It’s one of those books which you read, which made you think, but that is the end of it. You dont come back to it later or remember it in future.

I guess that is what was disappointing for me.
Taking such a delicate but prevalent issue as major plot theme and having almost all ingredients right, still couldn’t leave a lasting impression.

Star rating: 3/5!


Happy reading 😀

Thanks for the Trouble by Tommy Wallach (Book Review)

First thoughts: “Whats up with that cover??


If I am being honest, for the longest time, despite the great reviews and many recommendations, i didn’t read this because the book cover was just not appealing.( Yes, i do that at times!*guilty*)

It isn’t horrible or anything like that, no. It is quite decent, but it just did not make me pick up the book and read it.

But I am glad i still went ahead and gave this story a go.
This book was refreshing, since the plot was something I didn’t read in a long time. No it wasn’t brand new per say but definitely it had been long since I had read a book like this.


“I’ve got some questions for you. Was this story written about me?”
I shrugged.
“Yes or no?”
I shrugged again, finally earning a little scowl, which somehow made the girl even more pretty. It brought a bloom to her pale cheeks and made sharp shelves of her cheekbones.
“It’s very rude not to answer simple questions,” she said.
I gestured for my journal, but she still wouldn’t give it to me. So I took out my pen and wrote I can’t on my palm.
Then, in tiny letters below it, I finished the thought: Now don’t you feel like a jerk?

Parker Santé hasn’t spoken a word in five years. While his classmates plan for bright futures, he skips school to hang out in hotels, killing time by watching the guests. But when he meets a silver-haired girl named Zelda Toth, a girl who claims to be quite a bit older than she looks, he’ll discover there just might be a few things left worth living for.
Being very honest, i was not expecting anything from this book since i was, infact, judging it by the cover. 

Skip to SPOILER ENDS to avoid the spoiler.


Plot:Parker cant speak because, well he cant. He likes stealing and believes stealing from rich is not necessarily a crime and on one of his stealing escapades, he meets ZELDA.
But Zelda has her own secret.
She doesnt AGE.
This book takes us on a 3 day journey of parker, with zelda and their adventures.
SADLY they dont end up together and one of them dies. ( to know which one, GO READ THE BOOK) 😛



The whole story spanning on events of 3 days only has 2 main characters: Parker and Zelda.

I cant describe anything without giving away the story. Read spoiler/plot for character description.

The theme is “meet-cute” plus “Age of Adaline” combined.
This short journey, which somehow felt like forever, leaves you with a nice , subtle feeling of being satisfied with how things ended.

And even though the story was far fetched and didnt make much sense logically, in a strange way it made perfect sense (again, you have to read to understand what i mean :D)

Sometimes, the perfect ending is when things aren’t perfect at all!

Sometimes, you just need to accept the present to be HAPPY.

I loved the pace of this book and the overall flow of things. ALSO, i was actually amused by how the story unfolded and I think the story ended, where it should have. It wasnt stretched unnecessarily, nor was it too short to want more.


I was contempt with this book and i dont regret the two hours i spent reading this at all.

Yes the cover is “BLAH”.
And if not for the good reviews this book got, i would have never read the book just based on the cover. I hope the next book of the author has a more appealing cover.

Star rating: 4/5!

Happy reading 😀

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black (Book Review)

Series: The Folk of the Air-#1

Blurb:Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King.
To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.
In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself. 

This was my most anticipated release for january 2018 and it not only lived upto its expectation but also entered 2018 favourites!

Semi spoilers below. Skip to ‘Characters’ to avoid minor spoilers.

*Semi Spoiler Start*

Plot: The story revoleves around Jude and her quest to find her place in the land of faeries. Her life was uprooted from human world and she was placed in the fey world by the murderer of her parents at the age of seven. Since then its been 10 years now and she had adjusted and truly believes that fey world is where she belongs. Though she never lets go of her hate, for the murderer, she lets him train her and learn as much as she can to join the royal court as a knight. She has been constantly bullied by the youngest crown prince, Cardan, but she fights back because she does not see herself below the fey people. On the way she gets hired by the next ‘to-be’ high king as a his spy and does his work in exchange for a ‘geas’ which protects her from any sort of enchantment from the fey. But in turn of events the ‘to-be’ high king and most of the crown family is murdered by his own elder brother Baelkin, who wants the throne for himself and he needs the youngest crown prince Cardan to do so. Now, in a round about way, the power to choose the next high king lies in Judes hand. What will she do next!….Well that you have to read and find out!

*Semi Spoiler Ends*


  • Jude: The strong female protagonists whose ultimate fear is to loose control over herself under the fey charms/magic. She has a twin sister Taryn, who betrays her and a half fey sister Vivi who is loyal to her. She has a hate relationship with Cardan which turns to camaraderie by the end of book 1. The book is from her POV.
  • Cardan: He is the youngest crown prince known to be useless and a bully amongst the fey people. He secretly likes Jude but doesn’t want to, so he tries everything possible to make her hate him, including endless bullying, but he stops anyone else from doing anything fatally harmful to her. He has a big role to play in deciding the future of the next high king. He is being physically abused by his eldest brother Baelkin for the longest time but no one knows about it.
  • Madoc: Kings general. He falls in love with a human and fathers Vivi, but when the human betrays him and runs off with another human, He kills the human man and becomes the reason for the death of his human lover. He decides to take Vivi, along with Jude and Taryn(children of his lover and the human she ran of with) to the fey world and raises all 3 of them as his own. Plays a vital role is assassination of the crown family.
  • Prince Dain: The ‘to-be’ High King who gets killed by his brother. He has a group of 4 spies working for him when he was alive, including Jude.
  • Prince Dain’s Spies: Jude, The Roach, The Ghost and The Bomb.
  • Baelkin: The eldest crown prince who wants the throne for himself and kills all of his family except for Cardan.
  • Jude’s current Family: Madoc, his wife Oriana and his son Oak, Vivi, Taryn.
  • Cardan’s Friends/cronies: Locke, Nicasia, Veridian. Veridian almosts kills jude twice before she kills him. Locke makes jude believe he likes her.

These are the main characters and play vitol role in the development of the story. Jude’s character’s development from being vulnerable human to a leader among the fey group towards the end is the main focus throughout the story. These characters are really well written and they stay true to their straightforward roles. The only character which can be said to have a multilayered personality, which is discovered during the course of this story is Cardan. Everyone else is pretty much one dimensional and predictive in a way.


This book is more of a foundation for the next books to come so for the longest time not much happens in this book. Having said that, the story is still highly captivating from the start and keeps you engaged throughout. You wont feel bored or zoned out anywhere.

The strong female lead and her ‘adventures’ are something you will look forward too. And while there is very less of any romantic moments, the ones there present are cute and justified.

The only problem i had with this book is the title. ( This problem has nothing to do with the book itself, it is just my opinion, nothing else). Before reading the book i loved it, but after, I felt that the title should have been anything other than cruel prince since 90% of the book is about Jude. I understand the current title is not only for Cardan but also in reference to the other cruel princes in this story in general like baelkin, dain, locke etc, but still I just dont feel it does any justice to Jude.


All in all, this book was a great start for 2018. If you are planning to read this book but are not sure, I strongly suggest you at least give it a try. Its worth those few hours.

Star rating: 4.5/5!


Happy reading 😀