Posts

Showing posts from August, 2017

Roller Coaster in Tehran by Y. I. LATZ

Image
Roller Coaster in Tehran by Y. I. LATZ
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

When we hear spy what pops up in our mind. James Bond. Right? Or now a days Jason Bourne. Both are very hi-fi. They are cold, calculating, suave, unemotional almost robotic and ruthless. But how are real spies?

This book gives a peek into the life of a real espionage agent. Amalia Tavori has to become a Mossad agent per force due to a useless husband. She is originally a roller-coaster engineer. She is sent to Tehran, Capital of Iran to spy in the garb of an engineer. General Khudadad is a feared monster in army. She starts working for a powerful business tycoon. He has 4 beautiful daughters and a very sick son, who needs a complex heart surgery. The surgery can only be done in three western countries which have sanctions against Iran. Last option is Israel which is out of bounds. Amalia herself is a mother of 3 and feels the pain.

Iran and Israel are like India and Pakistan. Arch enemies. So the tensions are high. I read an…

The Light Between the Shadows by Tsukiko Spark

Image
The Light Between the Shadows by Tsukiko Spark
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

What to do with a vile person? Can he be treated (yes treated) of his malady? Being an asshole is a personality trait or mental sickness? If former is the case nothing can be done apparently but in second case it is treatable. This is the idiotic premise of this book as far as I understood.

Ben is a bid shot executive who is successful and a Casanova. He is megalomaniac. He is fond of screwing beautiful young girls. The girls who work for him also have to please him in kind. He doesn’t stick to one for long as he gets bored. So he keeps changing his assistants after some time (of course after using them physically). His friends and girl friend, Tina are also not safe from his barbs. Enters his new sexy assistant Shira and the same pattern seems to be repeated. Meanwhile a young waiter stands up to him and he demolishes him and his pride. Suddenly he found himself bound in a strange place. He is told by none other th…

Another's Child by Einat Danon

Image
Another's Child by Einat Danon
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Life is uncertain. Anything can happen anytime and we don’t know which moment will be our last. Insurance is for money. But can it secure the future of our children.

Yael and Arik Katz are have made a pact with their friends which they never imagined will be implemented. But their friend die in an accident and they get their daughter Noa. Noa is raised in Canada and they live in Israel. They bring her to to them but she is not happy there. She tries to escape but is unsuccessful. Then Debbie the lawyer tells them that the accident might be a suicide and the insurance company may deny the compensation. What happens next?

The story is poignant. The pain of Noa who is recently orphaned is vexing. Teal and Arik don’t know how to deal with it. This book makes you to question every set norm of society : family, friends, relations etc. the writing is clear and make you feel the pain of characters. It is a good one time read though a sl…

Our Start-Up by Dov Reichman

Image
Our Start-Up by Dov Reichman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

As per Wikipedia a startup is

“A startup company (startup or start-up) is an entrepreneurial venture which is typically a newly emerged, fast-growing business that aims to meet a marketplace need by developing a viable business model around innovative product, service, process or a platform. A startup is usually a company such as a small business, a partnership or an organization designed to effectively develop and validate a scalable business model.”

Israel is known for enterprise. This is the story of Nir, a teenager who wants to be an entrepreneur. He has a idea to save the environment and make some money at the same time. Nano technology plays a role in it. His mother is under a lot of pressure as her job is under threat due to globalization. His father and Maayan, sister is helpful. Nir is curious and inquisitive. He is aware that his business has to compete at a global level. He along with his friends try to iron out agreements,…

The Three Psychos by Yash Pawaskar

Image
The Three Psychos by Yash Pawaskar
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

“The pendulum of the mind oscillates between sense and nonsense, not between right and wrong.”
― C.G. Jung

How apt these words are for the book. The mind is a dangerous master and good servant. It will make one do all the non sense and dangerous things. It can be tamed though with practice and will. Easier said than done but, at the same time difficult but not impossible. Out of three, 2 of the stories prove this and one shows how mind is a beast.

The book is a psychological thriller and has three stories. Let’s see one by one:

1. DE22912: The story is as unusual as the name itself. Alex is a millionaire who is trapped in a box. He remembers scenes from his past and each incident has some relation with a mysterious number DE22912. What does it mean? Will Alex ever come out of the box?

2. Patient number 9: An amnesic person is brought to the mental hospital. He has no recollection of his past. Not even his name. So he is calle…

Kansa (Book 1 - The Killer Trilogy) by Prassant Kevin

Image
Kansa (Book 1 - The Killer Trilogy) The Professor Black Series by Prassant Kevin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Today is Janamstmi. Birthday of Shri Krishna, who killed Kansa (his maternal uncle). Today is 15th August too, our independence day. Is it just a coincidence? ☺.

Shri Krishna is 8th incarnation of Bhagwan Vishnu. Krishna was born in prison to devout parents – Devki and Vasudeva. At the time of his birth, his life was in danger because the tyrant Kansa was seeking to kill him. It had been foretold that Kansa would be killed by Devki’s eighth child. Someone told Kansa that anyone of Devki children could kill him. So he killed all the children of Devki immediately after birth. He is personification of pure evil. Since Sri Krishna was the eighth child, he was smuggled out of prison to be raised by his foster parents Nanda and Yashoda in Gokula. That is the intent behind the name of book. A psychopathic killer named Kansa, is on the loose, who kills woman and their newborn babies. So th…

I am Not A Traitor by Y. I. LATZ

Image
I am Not A Traitor by Y. I. LATZ
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I am a sucker for spy books. These appeal to us because of thrills and edge of the seat adventure factor. This is also one of them and involves Mosaad, one of the most feared agencies.

Henry Stein finds himself in the prison in opening chapter. He is there on espionage charge for CIA. His sexy Korean girlfriend is allegedly a CIA operative. He works in Navy as a Chef so it is easy to roam inside the most secret meetings. His wife has an affair with a fruit seller. His daughter is missing, maybe kidnapped. Is he a traitor?

The book is pretty straight and sedate. The story couldn’t keep me engrossed. Motivation of main characters is not understood by me. What is Singer doing with a loser like Stein? Marina and Jimmy came out as idiots. Shin is manipulative or is she? And the track about his daughter and wife is totally tangential.

My main peeve is that there are 3 allies: USA, Great Britain and Israel. They maybe spying on each oth…

Being a Project Manager: Planning the Project by Hamutal Weisz, Daniel Zitter

Image
Being a Project Manager: Planning the Project by Hamutal Weisz
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Can project management be taught? Well yes and no. It is less of a science and more of an art which is to be learnt by the experience and can’t be taught. So what purpose can this book, like countless management book, serve?

This is book 2 of a 4 part series. Part 2 is about planning of project. This try to teach us many tools which can help us to manage and plan project in a more efficient way. The approach of keeping end in sight and identifying most important objectives, necessary and peripherals can help us to plan it better in the beginning. Then there is question of involvement of client and stakeholders. How much is required and how it be helpful rather then being an impediment. The concept of WBS (Work Breakdown structure) is about dividing the content into smaller, manageable and measureable work units.

Language of book is easy and it does not fall into trap of rhetoric and hi-fi technical t…

PSYCON by Varun T.

Image
PSYCON by Varun T.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book is supposed to be a political thriller. It has characters from PM of the country to CM of UP, CBI top cops, corrupt IT officers, businessmen, middlemen and scrupulous tax manipulating CAs. It starts with a lot of promise. Does it stay true till the end? Let’s see.

PSYCON is the name of the firm which is an acronym made up of the names of two of the founders (Prateek Subramaniam and Yashwardhan Sharma Consulting firm). A new regime under the leadership of Narendra Bhai Doshi is in place at centre. In UP the state is headed by MS Yadav of Samuhwadi Party (SP). These two chaps are CA who works as pimps of IT officer Meena. Modus operandi of them is ingenious. They calculate probable black money income of corrupt businessmen by going undercover. Then they calculate probable tax liability. Meena sends IT notice for double the amount and then sends these two to settle on his behalf. They ask half the money to wipe the slate clean and thus …

15/1 Story Avenue by Avishek Gupta

Image
15/1 Story Avenue by Avishek Gupta
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

“People who say it is a long story, mean it's a stupid short one that they are too embarrassed and couldn't be bothered to tell”
― Cecelia Ahern, Love, Rosie

Avishek has covered varied topics through his stories in the book. Love, technology, hacking, Physics, Sound, nostalgia, marriage, friendship, journalism, divorce and many more. Short stories are very different from novels as they tell about short period and two or three characters. It is a challenge to tell short stories as you have extremely less space to set the context and say the story.

First let us see in brief what the stories are all about:

1. Our Unique Love Story- A simple Engineering college romance.

2. Drift-or some of these young couples, divorce is just an extension of break-up – a legal stamp to part away happily.

3. Mandroid- A psychological thriller about suppressed anger of a timid man.

4. The Burning torch of truth - It is a political thriller with…

Reminiscences Of A Seeker: Dark Face Of The White World (True Story) by Kapil Kumar Bhaskar

Image
Reminiscences Of A Seeker: Dark Face Of The White World by Kapil Kumar Bhaskar
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The blurb proclaims this is a true story of the author. It may be true but I read it as fiction.

Amazon review link is https://www.amazon.in/review/R992UVMR...

Story begins with Kapil, the protagonist being visited by a true guru. Then the story moves to flash back. We come to know that Kapil has many siddhis taught by his gurus Trilokenath and afterwards Asuranath. Somehow they turn his enemies and then he has to deal with them. The first part finished at a cliff hanger and there are many unanswered questions.

Many things are told in the book which might interest some readers. Such as:

1. People who have past life relationships are born as twins, mother and child, brothers and sisters, best friends or members of the same soul family.

2. “How can the door of salvation, from where you proceed to the higher realms of consciousness after discarding the limitations of your physical body, be i…