22 July, 2017

#SpecialFeature :: Four reasons your book got rejected by Shweta Taneja


*** Special Feature - July 2017 ***



About the Book:
Tantrik detective Anantya Tantrist is back, smart-ass comments, dark mantras and all.

In Banaras, Bhairava, a black tantrik, sets out to win control of life through mass murder, aided by an army of pretas. In Delhi, a tribal supernatural melts to death in a five-star hotel on the same night that an ancient demonologist is murdered. All this while, the government and the Central Association of Tantriks choose to look the other way and gods, demi-gods, immortals and rakshasas all join Bhairava’s army.

All that stands between the murdering bosses and the hapless masses is unofficial detective Anantya Tantrist, armed with a boneblade, a tote of mandalas and a cocky attitude. Just as she begins to see a pattern between a goddess who is selling art, a miracle-producing minister, an undead mob attacking a rock concert and her immortal friend throwing a tantrum, Anantya faces her most personal hell: her ex-boyfriend Neel has come back from the dead and is trying to kill her. He’s not the only one, of course. A powerful rakshasi wants her head, a pair of demi-gods wants her blood and the trolls are trying to squash her to pulp.

She cannot even sleep off the exhaustion, because each time she drops off, Bhairava invades her mind, trying to consume it. Join Anantya as she faces her most formidable enemy yet in the ultimate battle for her mind and her city.

Book Links:
Goodreads I Amazon


Four reasons your book got rejected

Early morning, you open your email box and out pops yet another rejection from a publisher you had your heart on. You fume, you wither, you get depressed and angry and want to hit someone. Everyone is against your voice. And you feel one of these things:

–       Your writing isn’t good enough.
–       You are not good enough.
–       You have no influence with the editor/publisher.
–       Nothing in India happens without money involved.
–       You should’ve gone to a literary festival and made ‘friends’ and maybe that would’ve helped.
–       No one understands your book. They are all idiots over at the publisher’s.

Sorry, none of the above reasons might be the ones that made your book get a no from the publisher. If they’ve sent you a rejection it means that your pitch actually made it to some editor’s table, got consideration and a refusal. It means it was given a fair chance. I have spoken to a lot of editors and publishers in the last five years and these are the most common reasons I found publishers rejected my work. None of it had to do with me or the book I had written.

1 It didn’t match the publisher’s list

A publisher is a commercial business. Every year, they have a boardroom meeting where they try and figure the trends worldwide, genres and book kinds they think will do well in the market. So each editor already has a list of sorts beginning of their commercial year: Tags in mind like #MetroRead #HighFantasy, #ParanormalRomance, #WarStories, #CelebrityExpose. In comes your book. It doesn’t fit into the boxes they’ve figured. The list they’ve prepared. Only if the editor really, really likes the pitch and then the manuscript will they veer from the list. So if you happen to write the ‘fashionable’ genre of the moment, you’re more likely to be noticed. For example, when Twilight series did well, suddenly all publishers started to take in more fantasy romances. It didn’t mean there weren’t romances being written before, it just meant they started to get a yes from the listmakers.

2 You sent it to the wrong editor

Finding the right editor to pitch your work to is essential in getting it published. There are two things to look out for. First of all, what section is the editor handling? Big publishing houses in India have segregated editors in their editorial team. There’s a Young Adult editor, a Children’s editor, an Adult Fiction editor and a non-Fiction one. So your first step is to find the right genre editor within each publishing house you are targeting. Secondly, editors are hardworking people who are deeply passionate about the books they pick up for their list. Each editor across the industry, loves a particular genre. Do your research for each publishing house, find the right editor and try and connect with them and pitch to them directly. Some of them are open to it. I’ve done is successfully two times in the past.

3 The sales team thought it wasn’t sellable

The decision to publish a book is not of an editor’s alone or even of the editorial team overall. They do sort of a round table conference with their sales and marketing team. The book rights are bought only if the sales team feels confident that it can sell it in the market. Yes, if you’ve got the right editor to vouch for your book and he/she is willing to fight it out in that discussion, your book has a better chance. Which is why the point above is so important. Getting a voice in the publishing house which vouches for you. It helped me get my Anantya Tantrist three-book deal.

4 Your pitch wasn’t focused

We might be great at long form but when it comes to creating the right pitch, many of us fail miserably. In this scenario, the concept of an elevator pitch is quite helpful. If you meet a stranger in an elevator (the speedy ones), what will you say your book is about? You have five seconds. Do this exercise again and again till you cut all the vague meat off your book and know EXACTLY what to say about your book. Then write the email you’re going to send to a publisher. Any good publishing house gets a whopping number of book pitches a day. They call it the slush pile, because a lot of them are badly written emails, unclear and confused. Editors don’t have time to wade through each of them. They go by instinct and a well-written, focused email will always turn them on. It helps to know what each editor is looking for. So instead of a generic email to all, try and send a personalized one to up your chances.

There’s a lot of luck involved in the process and I wish you all the best. If you know of any other reasons of rejections, put them down in the comment box below.

Originally posted on Shweta Writes

About the Author:
I am a fantasy author, graphic novelist and journalist based in India. My weakness is to create, retell and listen to stories full of magic, fantasy and non-human thingummies. That and tea of course.

I’ve written seven books and two hundred articles in a career spanning fourteen years and I continue to write. I’m a Charles Wallace India Fellow (2016) and was shortlisted for Best Writer Award in ComicCon India for The Skull Rosary (2013).

My books include the bestselling series Anantya Tantrist mysteries (HarperCollins), Ghost Hunters of Kurseong (Hachette), and Krishna Defender of Dharma (Campfire). The latter is included in the CBSE Must-read list for schools, is sold internationally and has been reprinted many times. The latest How to Steal a Ghost @ Manipal (Juggernaut Books) is in the bestselling category online. Check out my Wikipedia for more on me.

Connect with the Author:
Website I Facebook I Twitter I Tumblr I Instagram


Giveaway:
One Signed Copy of The Matsya Curse - Open for Indian Residents Only


a Rafflecopter giveaway

15 July, 2017

#SpecialFeature :: Five tips to a spectacular book pitch by Shweta Taneja


*** Special Feature - July 2017 ***



About the Book:
Tantrik detective Anantya Tantrist is back, smart-ass comments, dark mantras and all.

In Banaras, Bhairava, a black tantrik, sets out to win control of life through mass murder, aided by an army of pretas. In Delhi, a tribal supernatural melts to death in a five-star hotel on the same night that an ancient demonologist is murdered. All this while, the government and the Central Association of Tantriks choose to look the other way and gods, demi-gods, immortals and rakshasas all join Bhairava’s army.

All that stands between the murdering bosses and the hapless masses is unofficial detective Anantya Tantrist, armed with a boneblade, a tote of mandalas and a cocky attitude. Just as she begins to see a pattern between a goddess who is selling art, a miracle-producing minister, an undead mob attacking a rock concert and her immortal friend throwing a tantrum, Anantya faces her most personal hell: her ex-boyfriend Neel has come back from the dead and is trying to kill her. He’s not the only one, of course. A powerful rakshasi wants her head, a pair of demi-gods wants her blood and the trolls are trying to squash her to pulp.

She cannot even sleep off the exhaustion, because each time she drops off, Bhairava invades her mind, trying to consume it. Join Anantya as she faces her most formidable enemy yet in the ultimate battle for her mind and her city.

Book Links:
Goodreads I Amazon


Five tips to a spectacular book pitch

First of all, congratulations of writing down your dream work! That’s a huge achievement. Now you’ve to do something that might be much more difficult. You have to summarise your book, which can be anywhere between 50,000 to more than a lakh of words, into a little, nightmarish thing called a ‘pitch’. A cover letter or email which you will send across to editors across the country. That one pager which will make all the difference on whether the editor will even pick up the first chapter of your manuscript.

Focus it well

We authors might be great at long form but when it comes to creating the right pitch, many of us fail miserably. In this scenario, the concept of an elevator pitch is quite helpful. If you meet a stranger in an elevator (the speedy ones), what will you say your book is about? You have five seconds. Do this exercise again and again till you cut all the vague meat off your book and know EXACTLY what to say about your book. Then write the email you’re going to send a publisher.

Be brief and precise

Any good publishing house gets a whopping number of book pitches a day. They call it the slush pile, because a lot of them are badly written emails, unclear and confused. Editors don’t have time to wade through each of them. They go by instinct and a well-written, focused email will always turn them on. It helps to know what each editor is looking for. So instead of a generic email to all, try and send a personalized one to up your chance. 

Edit it well

There’s a reason why editors are called ‘editors’. They are worshippers of grammar and spelling and the rules of language. They crave for great books, but one thing that completely alienates them is a badly written cover note. So once you’ve prepared your pitch, read it, edit it. Keep it there for a day or two, look at it with fresh eyes and edit it again. Make sure there are no spelling mistakes, grammar mistakes or badly structured sentences.

Be professional

You might be emotional about your book, but most editors will look at it with the possibility of its salability. Any kind of emotion, overconfidence, pleading, moral stance completely turns off most editors. Editors represent a business which wants to make money off the books they publish. So it’s best to be professional about it. Make a level headed, clear pitch, put in exactly which genres the book belongs to, who is the target audience (no, the whole wide world is not going to read your book) and how it can be sold and marketed. Your pitch should be creative but also focused and professional.

Do take advice

Know of an industry professional? Ask for help. Discuss the pitch with your initial readers, see what they say about your book. You’re just going to get a few seconds of attention from every publisher that you’re going to send your book to. So make sure the pitch is the best you can prepare. Spend some time over it now so that the chances of your book being accepted increases.


Here’s wishing you success!

Originally posted on Shweta Writes

About the Author:
I am a fantasy author, graphic novelist and journalist based in India. My weakness is to create, retell and listen to stories full of magic, fantasy and non-human thingummies. That and tea of course.

I’ve written seven books and two hundred articles in a career spanning fourteen years and I continue to write. I’m a Charles Wallace India Fellow (2016) and was shortlisted for Best Writer Award in ComicCon India for The Skull Rosary (2013).

My books include the bestselling series Anantya Tantrist mysteries (HarperCollins), Ghost Hunters of Kurseong (Hachette), and Krishna Defender of Dharma (Campfire). The latter is included in the CBSE Must-read list for schools, is sold internationally and has been reprinted many times. The latest How to Steal a Ghost @ Manipal (Juggernaut Books) is in the bestselling category online. Check out my Wikipedia for more on me.

Connect with the Author:
Website I Facebook I Twitter I Tumblr I Instagram


Giveaway:
One Signed Copy of The Matsya Curse - Open for Indian Residents Only


a Rafflecopter giveaway

12 July, 2017

#CoverReveal :: Avishi by Saiswaroopa Iyer

~ Cover Reveal ~
Avishi by Saiswaroopa Iyer
12th July, 2017


Long before the times of Draupadi and Sita
Immortalised in the hymns of the Rig Veda
But largely forgotten to the memory of India
Is the Warrior Queen with an iron leg, Vishpala

Brought up in the pristine forest school of Naimisha, Avishi reaches the republic of Ashtagani in search of her destiny. When Khela, the oppressive King of the neighbouring Vrishabhavati begins to overwhelm and invade Ashtagani, Avishi rises to protect her settlement. But peril pursues her everywhere.
Separated from her love, her settlement broken, with a brutal injury needing amputation of her leg, can Avishi overcome Khela?

About the Author:
Saiswaroopa is an IITian and a former investment analyst turned author. Her keen interest in ancient Indian history, literature and culture made her take to writing. Her debut novel Abhaya, set in the times of Mahabharata was published in 2015. Avishi, her second novel set in Vedic India explores the legend of India’s first mentioned female warrior queen Vishpala.
She holds a certificate in Puranas from Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies. She is also trained in Carnatic Classical music and has won a state level gold medal from Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams. 


This Cover Reveal is brought to you by Book Review Tours

11 July, 2017

#BookBlitz :: Love, Murder & Mayhem Edited by Russ Colchamiro

~ Book Blitz ~
Love, Murder & Mayhem



About the Book
Love science fiction stories that all include elements ofLove, Murder & Mayhem?
 
Then welcome to the latest anthology from Crazy 8 Press! This amazing collection from 15 all-star authors will delight you with superheros and supervillains. AIs, off-worlders, and space cruisers. We’ve also got private eyes, sleep surrogates, time travelers, aliens and monsters—and one DuckBob!
 
With tales ranging from wild and wacky to dark and gritty to heartbreaking and fun, take the deadly leap with authors Meriah Crawford, Paige Daniels, Peter David, Mary Fan, Michael Jan Friedman, Robert Greenberger, Glenn Hauman Paul Kupperberg, Karissa Laurel, Kelly Meding, Aaron Rosenberg, Hildy Silverman, Lois Spangler, Patrick Thomas, and editor Russ Colchamiro.
 
You’ll never look at Love, Murder & Mayhem the same way again—and that’s just the way we like it.


About the Editor

Russ Colchamiro is the author of the rollicking space adventure, Crossline, the hilarious sci-fi backpacking comedy series, Finders Keepers, Genius de Milo, and Astropalooza, and is editor of the new anthology, Love, Murder & Mayhem, all with Crazy 8 Press.
Russ lives in New Jersey with his wife, two children, and crazy dog, Simon, who may in fact be an alien himself. Russ has also contributed to several other anthologies, including Tales of the Crimson Keep, Pangaea, and Altered States of the Union, and TV Gods 2. He is now at work on a top-secret project, and a Finders Keepers spin-off.
As a matter of full disclosure, readers should not be surprised if Russ spontaneously teleports in a blast of white light followed by screaming fluorescent color and the feeling of being sucked through a tornado. It’s just how he gets around — windier than the bus, for sure, but much quicker.








08 July, 2017

#SpecialFeature :: Five ways to make your character real by Shweta Taneja


*** Special Feature - July 2017 ***



About the Book:
Tantrik detective Anantya Tantrist is back, smart-ass comments, dark mantras and all.

In Banaras, Bhairava, a black tantrik, sets out to win control of life through mass murder, aided by an army of pretas. In Delhi, a tribal supernatural melts to death in a five-star hotel on the same night that an ancient demonologist is murdered. All this while, the government and the Central Association of Tantriks choose to look the other way and gods, demi-gods, immortals and rakshasas all join Bhairava’s army.

All that stands between the murdering bosses and the hapless masses is unofficial detective Anantya Tantrist, armed with a boneblade, a tote of mandalas and a cocky attitude. Just as she begins to see a pattern between a goddess who is selling art, a miracle-producing minister, an undead mob attacking a rock concert and her immortal friend throwing a tantrum, Anantya faces her most personal hell: her ex-boyfriend Neel has come back from the dead and is trying to kill her. He’s not the only one, of course. A powerful rakshasi wants her head, a pair of demi-gods wants her blood and the trolls are trying to squash her to pulp.

She cannot even sleep off the exhaustion, because each time she drops off, Bhairava invades her mind, trying to consume it. Join Anantya as she faces her most formidable enemy yet in the ultimate battle for her mind and her city.

Book Links:
Goodreads I Amazon


Five ways to make your character real

The most hyperreal character I created till now is Anantya Tantrist, the tantrik detective and the heroine of my latest, Cult of Chaos. She has made me schizophrenic. I know her voice so well, that I can hear her talk in my head, can tweet as her and myself at the same time, having conversations over Twitter or tell you what she would be saying right now for this blog (“Why’re you wasting your time? Do something creative.”). When I was still pitching her book, I met A, the editor, the HarperCollins editor of the series in India and told her that she had to say yes to the book, because Anantya liked her. And I wasn’t lying. It was the truth. She’s that real to me. Like a friend. So here, I share what I’ve learnt while creating her. Here’s my bits on how to create characters that are crazy real.

1 Take her out on a date

You want to know what the biggest antihero of your book thinks like. What does he want? Why does he want to destroy the world? Does he like coffee or prefer tea? Is he an alcoholic? Meeting a character is like meeting a stranger on a date. Ask them inane questions. Do they like chocolate or strawberry icecream? You have to ask them what they are like, what they want from their lives, what they desire, what they feel about traffic jams, what their objective in life is. Spend a day, talking to your character, even the minor one. Romance her, fall in love, or hate her like you would the guy who persistently honks behind you in a stuck traffic jam.

2 Find out how she speaks

Readers love dialogues. Many of us while reading a book skip all the details, the paragraphs that talk about atmosphere and stuff and go to the dialogues. Dialogues are by far the most important way that readers will know your characters from. So it’s very important to know how your character speaks. Hear. Listen to what people say, how they say it. Everyone of us has a style of speech. Try and bring that out for your character. What are the words she uses the maximum? The repetitive things she says after each sentence? You want to make it real, yes, but not so real that it has repeated sentences. So keep it short.

3 Know the emotional ticks

After the date, this is the second level of knowing your character. What are the social issues they connect to the most? What makes them raving mad, or crazy? What brings tears to their eyes? For even the vilest of villains would have that soft spot somewhere. Find out what makes them sad, what’s their emotional curve. Know it when you’re writing and your readers will feel it too.

4 Put in her past experiences

I call this the soul of the character. As we grow, we absorb experiences each day and you need to know what your character’s past was to understand how they will behave now. What has happened to them in their past? Who were the people they grew up with? Like 90s soap operas, physical abuse, the desire to own a car or bullying a classmate or a pet. These experiences make the person we become and if you know the character’s past, you will know how they will react to situations, when and how they will act and take the story forward. To know your characters is to know your story too.

5 Listen to her body, beyond the face.


Body language is a very important aspect in detailing a character. Whether you write first-person narrative or third, you have to know how the character blink their eyes when they talk, how they smile, what changes in their body language when certain people are around. Find words for them, keep them listed somewhere. How our eyes look when we speak, how do our legs and hands move. Is her hair disheveled or clean, how does she smell? What are her most prominent features? How does she move her hands and arms and legs when she speaks? Build your vocabulary about the character and you’ll be able to bring her out in flesh and blood through words.

Originally posted on Shweta Writes

About the Author:
I am a fantasy author, graphic novelist and journalist based in India. My weakness is to create, retell and listen to stories full of magic, fantasy and non-human thingummies. That and tea of course.

I’ve written seven books and two hundred articles in a career spanning fourteen years and I continue to write. I’m a Charles Wallace India Fellow (2016) and was shortlisted for Best Writer Award in ComicCon India for The Skull Rosary (2013).

My books include the bestselling series Anantya Tantrist mysteries (HarperCollins), Ghost Hunters of Kurseong (Hachette), and Krishna Defender of Dharma (Campfire). The latter is included in the CBSE Must-read list for schools, is sold internationally and has been reprinted many times. The latest How to Steal a Ghost @ Manipal (Juggernaut Books) is in the bestselling category online. Check out my Wikipedia for more on me.

Connect with the Author:
Website I Facebook I Twitter I Tumblr I Instagram


Giveaway:
One Signed Copy of The Matsya Curse - Open for Indian Residents Only


a Rafflecopter giveaway

02 July, 2017

#Interview with Thomas McRae, Author of Poetry 4 the Soul

About the Author:
Writing poetry books since early 2000s and started short fiction novels are 2007/2008 has numerous poetry certificates, local  news paper articles and magazines reviews. Also been on two online radio shows and book blogs. Plus trying to reach out to actors movie producer's and screen writers to transform Pimp in the pulpit in to a motion picture film. 
Pimp in the pulpit is based on my life and experiences with my  family and there craziness. Jones family are based on myself mom pop's and brother. Overall hard working family surrounded by kin folk who doesn't appreciate the value in love and support. 
Pimp in the pulpit can be purchased at Amazon.com Barnes and noble.com Google Books.com or fishpond.com or Just go online and type Pimp in the pulpit by Thomas McRae and all the information I just sent will show up plus more.  Thank you for your support and this extraordinary opportunity to be with you. Pimp in the pulpit by Thomas McRae is 35 pages and published by Eber And Wein publishing a self publishing company who provides excellent service and has really hard working people with a classy attitude. 

An Interview:

What inspires you to write?  
My personal experiences with family friends and even my day to day life. I write because it's my way in dealing with my pain plus it's also a creative way to express myself and be open plus honest about my life.

Do you have any old stories that haven't seen the light of day?  
Too some degree yes my very first short fiction novel called Street Trash. Which is based on my experiences at my job with a mean spirited copy worker who does have the same values or morals as I and yet has no problem looking down on others and judging them like he's Jesus Christ himself.

What would be the dream cast for your book if became a movie? 
Honestly if it was up to me i would let Marlon and Shawn Wayne's play my brother and I. Then Tracy Morgan could play my father and Dasha Palonco could play my mother. And all the other characters could be played by several of my favorite actors and actresses such as Laurence Fishburne Angela Bassett Jada Pinkett Smith Toni Braxton Tyra Banks Kimora Lee Simmons Anthony Anderson Katt Williams and the list goes on I have a few characters in the book it's inspired by my family and the craziness that comes with them.

Can you share with us  something off of your bucket list?  
I like to do some traveling someday but my main goal is to buy a house for myself and my parents. So we can live more comfortable plus eventually I like to start my own family biological or adopted just want to be a daddy with two healthy beautiful little girls I always wanted a daughter now I'm older I wouldn't mine two.

What's your favorite seen in the book? 
Pretty much everything because when I first wrote this book I was in a angry place. But once I was able too let go and found the humor the book began to speak for itself and came In to a life on its own.

Do you read?  And who are your favorite writers have they influence your craft? 
Langston Hughes, Maya Angelou are my main favorites honestly I don't read as much as I use to but every now and then. And yes there words inspires me to work hard and never give up now matter the out come.

When did you first realized you wanted to be a story teller? 
I've been telling stories for years but I finally decided to try and pursue it as a writer and try to achieve what several family members was so negative and none supportive. But to be honest there's a lot of envy in my family more jealously then love and that has been my lifelong battle. Trying to love those who clearly doesn't know how to love there selves. 

Is there anything else you like to share with your readers? 
Keep God in your heart and the people who loves you close by. Never allow anyone to tear you down because life is so precious and should be cherished and enjoyed.  

About the Book:



Jones family is a hard working family surrounded by kin folk who doesn't appreciate nor respect family values or loyalty.  Edward Jones and his parents Marcus Jones Senior and Cleopatra Ebony Goddess Jones plus his brother Marcus Jones Junior are dedicated to achieving their goals and living life without others jealousy and envy.


01 July, 2017

#SpecialFeature :: Introducing Shweta Taneja, #Author of The Matsya Curse


Under "Special Feature" every month I feature a Special Author. 
During this month I put up 5 posts about the Author/Book, including Interview / Review / Excerpt / Guest Post / Author Bio / Fun Facts or whatever else we can come up with. Also on the first day of the month we will  launch the Giveaway contest along with the first post and will announce the winner on the last day of the month.
So be sure to check out my blog every 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th of every month for something new :)

*** Special Feature - July 2017 ***


About the Author:
I am a fantasy author, graphic novelist and journalist based in India. My weakness is to create, retell and listen to stories full of magic, fantasy and non-human thingummies. That and tea of course.

I’ve written seven books and two hundred articles in a career spanning fourteen years and I continue to write. I’m a Charles Wallace India Fellow (2016) and was shortlisted for Best Writer Award in ComicCon India for The Skull Rosary (2013).

When I don’t write…
I watch morbid movies, have passionate discussions on arbitrary questions of life, read mythology, listen to people’s life stories or go take a hike, literally. I get inspired by things like gulmohar trees with its red flowers, a dead moth, steaming hot cup of green tea, the beautiful flight of a crow, weathered lips of an old woman, the grayness in a blue sky or a crumpled news piece. My heart thumps with excitement by written works of Shakespeare, Ursula Le Guin, Roald Dahl, Lewis Carroll, Isaac Asimov, Terry Pratchett and comics by Neil Gaiman and Alan Moore. My family, husband, muse (who has the uncanny habit of dropping by when I am sleeping) and keyboard help me in bringing these stories out of my head and on to the screen.

My books include the bestselling series Anantya Tantrist mysteries (HarperCollins), Ghost Hunters of Kurseong (Hachette), and Krishna Defender of Dharma (Campfire). The latter is included in the CBSE Must-read list for schools, is sold internationally and has been reprinted many times. The latest How to Steal a Ghost @ Manipal (Juggernaut Books) is in the bestselling category online. Check out my Wikipedia for more on me.

Connect with the Author:
Website I Facebook I Twitter I Tumblr I Instagram

About the Book:
Tantrik detective Anantya Tantrist is back, smart-ass comments, dark mantras and all.

In Banaras, Bhairava, a black tantrik, sets out to win control of life through mass murder, aided by an army of pretas. In Delhi, a tribal supernatural melts to death in a five-star hotel on the same night that an ancient demonologist is murdered. All this while, the government and the Central Association of Tantriks choose to look the other way and gods, demi-gods, immortals and rakshasas all join Bhairava’s army.

All that stands between the murdering bosses and the hapless masses is unofficial detective Anantya Tantrist, armed with a boneblade, a tote of mandalas and a cocky attitude. Just as she begins to see a pattern between a goddess who is selling art, a miracle-producing minister, an undead mob attacking a rock concert and her immortal friend throwing a tantrum, Anantya faces her most personal hell: her ex-boyfriend Neel has come back from the dead and is trying to kill her. He’s not the only one, of course. A powerful rakshasi wants her head, a pair of demi-gods wants her blood and the trolls are trying to squash her to pulp.

She cannot even sleep off the exhaustion, because each time she drops off, Bhairava invades her mind, trying to consume it. Join Anantya as she faces her most formidable enemy yet in the ultimate battle for her mind and her city.

Book Links:
Goodreads I Amazon

Giveaway:
One Signed Copy of The Matsya Curse - Open for Indian Residents Only


a Rafflecopter giveaway

30 June, 2017

#BookReview :: 3 and a Half Murders by Salil Desai

Two corpses . . . a woman lying dead on her bed, a man hanging from the ceiling fan. 
A suicide note cum murder confession. 
And a name . . . Shaunak Sodhi.

When the case comes their way, Senior Inspector Saralkar has just been diagnosed with hypertension and PSI Motkar is busy with rehearsals of an amateur play.

What appears at first to be a commonplace crime by a debt-ridden, cuckolded husband, who has killed his unfaithful wife and then hung himself, soon begins to unfold as a baffling mystery.

As clues point to a seven-year-old unsolved murder in Bangalore and other leads emerge closer home, Saralkar and Motkar find themselves investigating shady secrets, bitter grudges, fishy land deals, carnal desires, the dead woman Anushka Doshi’s sinister obsession with past life regression and her husband’s links to a suspicious, small-time god-man, Rangdev Baba. And then, suddenly, the murderer resurfaces and yet another life is in grave danger . . . 

Can Saralkar and Motkar get to the bottom of an unimaginably shocking motive and stop the malevolent killer from committing the fourth murder . . .?



I quite enjoyed the previous two Inspector Saralkar mysteries. As such when this book released, I bought it promptly with much expectations. And I must say, the book met with each of my expectations.

Inspector Saralkar and Motkar are back. This time they are investigating what seems to be an open and shut case of a man murdering his cheating wife and then hanging himself complete with a suicide note with the murder confession. Trust Inspector Saralkar to look closely even in such a case, and what he digs up is a lot of trouble including an unsolved murder.

I like this series as it seamlessly combines mystery with drama. There’s a lot of drama in the book, whether it be in Saralkar and Motkar’s personal life or whether be it in the case. And the comic relief with Saralkar’s sarcastic one liners is always a welcome thing in a book. In this instalment, we see the protagonist grow a bit as he ties up all the loops in the mystery. What is interesting is the way the author builds up each scene… from police station to the crime scene, the settings are always detailed. The dialogues in the book are mostly sharp and crisp. By the time the climax comes in, everything is neatly set up for Saralkar to tie up. Not a single plot hole.

Overall, this is one of the best IWE mystery books that I have read in recent times. I recommend it to all mystery and whodunnit lovers.

 

Read my reviews of


29 June, 2017

#SpecialFeature :: #CharacterInterview - Rebecca Throckmorton from Crossing the Street


*** Special Feature - June 2017 ***


Molly writes from her pantry, often in pajamas. She exercises regularly, despite the fact that she has sustained numerous injuries involving barbells and exercise balls. She successfully raised two gorgeous daughters, who both pay their own bills. 

Molly has few interests other than reading books and writing, although she and her husband did attempt clog dancing with disastrous results.

A huge fan of HGTV, Molly has been known to watch marathon sessions of “Househunters” while leafing through magazines and snacking.

Molly’s husband has an accordion band. The neighbors have started a collection to fund soundproofing for the Campbell’s basement.

Molly can be found at: Website * Blog * Twitter


Character Interview - Rebecca Throckmorton from Crossing the Street


What do you like most about yourself?
That’s a tough question! I am not pretty. I wish I had more gumption. Not big on exercise, and I am not a fan of kids. Wait, I have it: I am a good writer. I need to branch out from erotica, but I think I have The Great American novel inside me somewhere.

What do you care about most in the world?
I love my cat Simpson. He is very soft behind his ears, and I rub them when I get worried. I am also very fond of my friend Ella, who is 83. She and I have the best times watching old Lawrence Welk reruns and gossiping. Ella “gets” me.

What do you carry in your purse?
I hate purses. Usually, I just cram everything into my wallet. I put lip balm and Kleenex in my pocket. Of course, I have washed at least twenty-two tubes of lip balm, and my lint filter is full of Kleenex. But I need to be hands-free at all times. In case I need to grab somebody or hold a Popsicle.

What is the most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you?
So many. Here is a short list:
  • I called my new boss at Starbucks, whose name was Mr. Drabble, Mr. Dribble. I did this for ONE MONTH before being corrected by another barista. From then on, I didn’t call him anything. I just tried to act as if the whole thing had never happened.
  • I once wore my top inside out on a date to a fancy French restaurant. 
  • I shouted out HOLY SHIT from the audience in the middle of a surprising turn of events during a play. 
  • I stood my mother up for Mother’s Day brunch once because I got engrossed in watching Downton Abbey reruns and you know, Mr. Bates was almost a murderer!
  • I vomited in a taxi.

That’s enough humiliation for now, right?

What is your idea of a good marriage?
My God, do those exist? I am not big on commitment. But if I had to describe the perfect marriage in one of my books, it would be steamy sex (I write erotica, by the way), a husband with a sense of humor, a wife who never tires of that same joke about the short guy who goes into a bar, and lots of forgiveness.

What would you like it to say on your tombstone?
“She was cremated, by the way.”


Thanks for having me. 


About the Book
This wasn't the way Beck Throckmorton had planned it. She wasn't expecting to find herself in her thirties writing erotica and making flat whites for a living while she stewed over that fact that her ex had wound up with her sister. She never saw herself living in a small suburban Ohio town with an octogenarian neighbor best friend. And she definitely wouldn't have imagined the eight-year-old great-granddaughter of that friend turning her world upside down. 

As summer comes around, Beck's life is unsettled in every way. And that's before the crazy stuff starts: the sister taunting her with her pregnancy, the infuriatingly perfect boyfriend, the multiple trips to the emergency room. The needy, wise-beyond-her-years little girl finding places in her heart that Beck didn't even know existed. 

Beck has found herself at an emotional intersection she never anticipated. And now it's time to cross the street.

CROSSING THE STREET is a funny, touching novel that brims life's complexities. Filled with characters both distinctive and welcomingly familiar, it is a story that will entertain and enlighten.


Giveaway
1 eBook of Crossing the Street
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#BookReview :: Breathing Two Worlds by Ruchira Khanna

Neena Arya, a Delhi-born goes abroad for further studies and decides to settle down there. Determined to be a 'somebody' from a 'nobody' she blends with the Americans via the accent and their mannerisms while having a live-in relationship with her European boyfriend, Adan Somoza. 

When illness hits home, Neena rushes to meet her ailing dad. Tragedy strikes and amidst the mingling with relatives and friends, she finds herself suffocated with the two different cultures that she has been breathing since she moved to the United States. How will she strike a balance between both the cultures as she continues to support her widowed mother? Will she be able to do justice to her personal and professional life after the loss? 

Amidst the adjusting she bonds with an ally and learns about ties beyond blood. On what grounds will she be able to form an invisible thread that she has longed for since childhood?

Breathing Two Worlds ventures into cultures and ethnicity allowing Neena to ponder upon her foundation and priorities.


Breathing Two Worlds is a straightforward story of Neena, a Delhi girl. She ventures out into the world by going abroad for her higher studies and then decides to settle down there. When her father’s health deteriorates, she comes back to India. 

Neena is a modern age girl with values. As she sees the more and more of the world around her, she adjusts accordingly. She is a strong girl with mostly a pragmatic approach to life. As we see her in different settings, we see her struggling to maintain a balance on all aspects of her life. I know that it is difficult to go to a foreign country and to accept and settle in to their ways of life. Then to come back after a while to the culture that she was born to but something so different from what she was trying to settle in… It is a huge step. From balancing out the different cultures to balancing her personal and professional life – one needs a great amount of strength and will power for it. The question is whether Neena will manage it or not. Well you will have to read the book to find out.

It is noticeable that I am only talking about Neena and not any other character from the book. It is because thought there are quite a few characters in the book, none of them are in the spotlight. They are there to provide some depth to Neena’s life and that is all. This book is essentially about Neena alone. The book is well narrated and properly paced. The ending seemed slightly rushed. 

Over all, it is an interesting read for contemporary lovers.


Review Copy received from the Author



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