To Read Or Not To Read..


Ladies Its Time To Move on!!  

All Those who love reading Mills & Boons and day dream of the ultimate edgy romance.. We have got something to entice you further..

Well We are talking about the Fifty Shades Hysteria that’s capturing the Indian Markets. Already an International Bestseller  Worldwide this book will possess you with it stimulating romance.

It been on Our No 1 Bestseller for 10 weeks now and continues to dominate our charts.

Its a book Loved by all, Fantasized by all and Tabooed by all..

The Author E.L James wrote it initially as a E Book as a Fan Faction Novel For All Twilight Fans as the Central Characters are based on Edward & Bella and it was later penned into a book.

Fans Worldwide claim that this books can spice up marriages and can make dull & boring relationships intriguing.

The Book Has been christened as an ‘Adult Fiction’,  But the enigmatic housewife E LJames says “Its just a love story and if critics want to focus on other things its their issue”.(quote from interview by express and star.com)

Well the books do have scintillating effect on you!!

If You still haven’t Got your copy its time you buy it now!!

A Little About The Trilogy

 Christian Grey..Orphaned at a young age..Self Made Business Empire..Dark..Broody..Too Many Secrets in the closet..A Charming handsome Millionaire..Dominant..Never Fallen in Love

 Anatasia Steele…Clumpsy..Loves Reading..Average Girl Next Door..Loving Parents..A Young Student..Never Fallen in Love..

And an accidental meeting Sparks an Affair that knows no bounds…Inseparable & Insatiable love story..

This Story will take you through the up and downs in their twisted, damaged and deranged love story..

Publisher: Random House India

Price:Rs 325/ Box Set Rs 999 

Suited for ages 18 and up.

A Total Chick Flick!!

We will definitely try and post an interview with El James soon.. And anybody who wants to send us a review of the Book do write to us at crosswordconnect@gmail.com

Signing off For now..

Until Next Time Geeks

Happy Reading!!

Crossword Bookstores.

Book Review: ‘Pax Indica: India and the World in the 21st Century’


Hello & Welcome Back Book Lovers

We are back with your dose of Bookipedia.

Today we have a very interesting and in depth review written by Our new Guest Geek Blogger Katherine Abraham (Lets hear some applause).

A Bright and Talented Young Reader, She has beautifully articulated the book for us.

 Do Read the Review below and drop in your Comments.

 And all those who still want to be part of our Crossword Geek Blogger Program do write to us at crosswordconnect@gmail.com.

 

India’s Diplomatic Conundrum: Pax Indica

“Pax Indica” is the thirteenth feather in the cap of the Author- Diplomat turned Politician Shashi Tharoor. This engaging read stretches over 11 chapters and 428 pages, written with precision, clarity and an idea to introduce Indians and non- Indians to the concept, crux and complexities of India’s Foreign Policy.

At first sight the image on the book jacket which depicts an Indian Elephant trudging over the Globe may render the reader a feeling that the book is sure to lead the argument on the hallowed Indian ‘Superpower’. However the very first few pages make it amply clear that the Author has no remote inclination of declaring India as a Superpower just yet. Page 351 of the book dispels all doubts on this issue in a single question, “Can we be taken seriously as a potential world leader in the 21st century if we do not develop develop the institutions, the practices, the personnel and the mind-set required to lead in the global arena?”

The Latin title ‘Pax Indica’ literally translates as ‘Peace – India.’ One is forced to contemplate if there should in fact be a question mark at the end of that phrase because as one reads through, the views evinced come off as rather tangential, as it highlights the reasons India is struggling with to make Peace in its neighbourhood.

Staying true to the Historian in him Shashi Tharoor begins by re- visiting the past, reminiscing the tenets of the Nehruvian policy and then poses the question, “What would a ‘Pax Indica’ look like?” The answer to this is found in the ensuing chapters.

Eliciting views comes naturally for someone who has spent more than half his life in the global arena. The superiority of this book lies in the fact that each chapter begins with a briefing on the historical ties that each of these countries shares with India while gradually steering its way to the present situation and the current posit of these relations. The book which serves as an exposé goes on to elaborate on the capricious Indo- Pak relationship laying the bare facts without feigning optimism. While the author talks of the need for better relations, the book poses a lot of questions with fewer answers. One would expect a diplomat to share his blueprint for solutions to the same.

The author adopts a positive note on Afghanistan’s ability to develop as a hub of trade which will prove instrumental in connecting central and south Asia. The Author refers to his tenure as the Minister of State for External Affairs while subtly dropping a line on the superficiality of the Indian Foreign Policy when he uses the phrase ‘Official India’ on page 89.

The Grand Finale in the book namely its last two chapters are expansive, educative, eye- openers on questions a lot of IFS aspirants have been asking and the lacuna that exist in the Indian Executive.

As to the question on NRIs Shashi Tharoor very aptly sums their importance in three simple words : Pride, Support and Investments. The author continues to give the readers the idea of Dem0cracy and Diversity.

Structurally, the book is well divided. Each paragraph centres around a single thought. The paragraph ends and so does the point of focus.

It is commendable that the Author ensures to draw the attention of readers to the neglected Indian Foreign Service and weaves the past problems encountered by various Ministers and the laxity on the part of successive governments although he himself is a part of the system.

The book however falls short in a few places especially when dealing with Indo- Maldivean relations. One gets the feel that the passage has almost been hastily jotted down, perhaps in the quest to avoid leaving any country. Given the author’s current political standing one can only presume that a policy of caution has been maintained consistently.. At many levels the Author’s hopes for a shared world vision and a Multi polar world is appreciable but rather a distant dream as of now.

The essence of the book lies in the Author’s statement, “Diplomatic initiatives need to be converted into commercial, touristic and investment opportunities.”

A recommended read for all, those expecting the book to be a deep and intense analysis of Indian Foreign Policy must read the Author’s Acknowledgments where he explicitly states that ‘Pax Indica’ is an ‘extended analytical essay devoid of footnotes and reference material.’

The size of the book need not intimidate any reader worried about a heavy read. The target audience in this case is rather wide because the wealth of information is of interest for young readers while the nuances of Foreign Policy making are sure to attract older readers.
With a perfect blend of history, culture and diplomacy, Pax Indica: India and the World of the 21st Century, is a light enjoyable read on a rather heavy topic!

Giving it a 4/5 for its style of writing and 3.5/5 for its content.

Publisher : Penguin India

Author: Shashi Tharoor

Price: Rs 799

When The Tables Were Turned…



So Dear Book Lovers.. We have been putting a lot of authors lately in our Hot seat and been quizzing them on different things. (We aren’t seeing any comments from the geek s sad face)

But today we had this fantastic opportunity to talk to a Journalist slash Editor turned author Mr Naresh Fernandes.

Well we got to play Journalist this time with him & Interviewing somebody who does this for a living day in and day out left us stumbled, confusing and restless..

I think the Crossword blog team here had tough time deciding what to ask him.

Before we showcase what he had to say..

A little More about Naresh..

He comes across as a Wanderer to us.. Always searching for something interesting and new..Loves Mumbai to the core. He always has the most interesting stories to tell about the City. A complete Mumbaite to the core. He Might have a puzzled look at times but he is a true gem of a person. He is super grounded.

Apart from being an editor of a leading magazine he has also written a Book Title ‘Taj Mahal Foxtrot’ – Is A Story told through the lives of a menagerie of geniuses, strivers and eccentrics, both Indian and American, who helped jazz find a home in the sweaty subcontinent.

Well Here’s what Naresh had to say..

 

Given a Chance for which magazine would like to be an editor for one day?

In my wildest imagination, the New Yorker.

Love for Jazz music when and where did it all start?

I’ve been listening to jazz since I was about 15. I love its improvised quality, how musicians play the same tune differently each time they perform it.

As journalist do you tend to criticize stories written by your peers?

All the time, unfortunately. But to compensate for that, I also make it a point to call people or send them notes when I see something I really like.

Favourite Mumbai street Food?

Kombdi-vade at Raju Malavni Corner, near Sena Bhavan.

Current read…

Adam Hochschild’s To End All Wars, an excellent book about pacificists who resisted the First World War.

Favourite time in the city?

 Strolling through the older neighborhoods, especially Dongri.

Anything on the pipeline for your next book…

It’s a short book for Aleph on the death of the idea of Bombay.

Take on the Current Literature scenario in India? 

I wish there was much more narrative non-fiction being written. There are stories unfolding all around us. I wish more people would tell them.

Signing off for now..

Untill Next Time..

Happy Reading

Crossword Bookstores

From ‘Corporate’ Life to ‘Chanakya’s’ Way of Life


  Hello & Welcome Back Book lovers!!

How Many of you know about the life & teachings of Chanakya?

Still wondering who he is..

Well To tell you a little about Chankya..He was one of the best and perhaps the most    intelligent advisors to the Mauryan Dynasty.

He was behind Chandragupta Maurya’s rise to power. His skill, tactics, strategies made him one of the most respected and renowned Guru and Advisor of all time.

Chankya’s policies of monetary and fiscal important to the Mauryan Empire has been documented in the Arthashastra. It also highlights the war strategies used by the empire.

With Numerous books in the Market on Chanakya’s teachings and sayings,  Radhakrishann Pillai decided to make Chankya’s teachings into his life Passion.

He has transformed all of Chanakya’s teachings that can be used by the corporate sector to develop and nourish leaders and train them accordingly.

The Book ‘Corporate Chankya’ has been a bestselling book for a long time now and has been published into various languages. Radhakrishnan Pillai has started an Institute on Chanakya’s philosophy and he trains leaders, entrepreneurs under it through its Chankya’s teachings.

We got Candid with This Best Selling author cum Consultant cum Guru cum Trainer cum guide.

Multitalented Isn’t He!!

You can identify him in a crowd of people as the one with the most animate conversations moving swiftly from one person to another spreading his contagious laughter and impeccable knowledge.

Here’s what he had to say when we put him in our hot seat..

1.       What really Inspired you to translate Chanakya’s teachings into a book?

A. I have been teaching the lessons of Chanakya from his book Kautilya’s Arthashastra since 2003. In the process of this many people used to ask if there is a book of mine on the subject. So the book became an extension of my teachings. However Jaico Publishing was responsible to identify me and asked if I can write a book. Thus came by first book ‘Corporate Chanakya’ which has been in the best selling list ever since its release in 2010.

2.       Your book has remained on the Crossword Bestsellers charts since a while now and has been published in multiple languages , this tells us the success of the book. How do you as an author/orator/guru who gives lectures on leadership & success grasp all this success that has come your way?

A. I am very lucky. God has been very kind to me. For the first book of any author the success is beyond imagination. ‘Corporate Chanakya’ has sold nearly 1 lac copies. For a management book it is a very big number. It has now come out in 10 regional languages namely, Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, Bengali, Aasame, Oriya, Kannada, Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu. The book is now available in audio book too with the veteran Bollywood actor Tom Alter giving his voice. Also a film inspired by my book ‘Chanakya speaks’ produced by Shemaroo is now ready for release.

The latest version of my book ‘Corporate Chanakya on leadership’ and ‘Corporate Chanakya on management’ with an audio CD is also doing very well in sales numbers.

The book was nominated for ‘Crossword-Vodafone’ book of the year award under the popular category (which is based on sales numbers and shows the readers love for the book). I know for various companies that have bulk purchased the book and gifted it to their employees as well as client and customers. Various Business schools across the globe are now using this as a text book for their research on Indian management.

I want to thank everyone for the success and help. Even Crossword bookstores has contributed to make it a success. Across India I have done launches and author sessions in various stores. Want to thank the Crossword team to being so helpful and friendly towards me.

3.      Apart from your book your 3 favourite picks that you would recommend somebody to read on leadership & success.

1. Holy Geeta – by Swami Chinmayananda

2. 7 Habits of highly effective people – Steven Covey

3. Ramayana

 

 

Publisher: Jaico Publishing

Price: 295

 

Do drop in your comments.

 

Signing off for now..

 

Untill next time Geeks!!

 

Happy Reading

 

Crossword Bookstores!!

Asia’s Biggest ‘Poor Little Rich slum’



Hello & Welcome Back Geeks..

This week we got Chatty with Rashmi Bansal author of the new book “Poor Little Rich Slum’ this time. As you know she has written over 3 Bestselling Books ‘Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish’, ‘Connect The Dots’, ‘I Have A Dream’. Her Books have always been constant chartbusters in our Non-fiction Section.

Dharavi mostly known for its notorious and controversial stories.. They say what happens in Dharavi stays there and nobody gets to hear about it.

In This Book Rashmi Bansal & Deepak Gandhi take you in this intriguing world of Dharavi & unfold the lifes of these dharavians which is completely different from you and us.

A Must read for one and all and we highly recommend it.

Rashmi Bansal is one of the most approachable, simple, humble and well-read authors. Her one smile can melt hearts. Over the years she has inspired millions with stories of passionate enterprisers and for her , inspiration dwells on getting these stories to more closer to readers.

Here’s A Snippet of her interview:

1.       You Have interviewed all different kinds of Entrepreneurs for your books , how different/ challenging was the experience when you interviewed the budding entrepreneurs on the streets of Dharavi?

Dharavi is a city within a city – a very unique and different city that what most of us know as Mumbai. Even finding an address within its twisting lanes can be a challenge!

Before we started researching this book none of us had ever visited Dharavi. We didn’t know anyone there. Hence building trust and rapport with people took some time.

What’s more, the entrepreneurs of Dharavi are mostly invisible and little celebrated. So it was like getting into a mine, knowing there is gold in there, but having to dig, dig and dig to reach it!

2.       Tell us some of the most unique sights & sounds that you witnessed in Dharavi, As they say ‘Dharavi is different world in itself’.

There are many unique sights and sounds but a few which I will share with you:

– The Mt Everest of Recycling: Seeing the mountains of waste plastic sorted and being converted into pellets was quite amazing

– So this is a Patli Gali: If you think you’ve seen narrow bylanes, you haven’t seen anything until you see Dharavi. If Harry Potter were to enter this maze, I don’t know if he would find his way out  😉

– Village within a city – But every now and then you will see a ‘different’ Dharavi with architectural charm and beauty!

Beautiful, Smiling faces : Despite everything we saw so many smiling faces, esp those of children. This is the future of Dharavi and certainly, they have a positive attitude. But they deserve a better life than previous generations.

3.       According to you what kind of progress has Dharavi witnessed over the years and what can bring about a radical change in Dharavi?

There has been a great deal of economic progress – ‘made in Dharavi’ is a  unofficial brand name now for a wide variety of goods which not just on price but quality. There has also been social progress as people are aware of their rights as citizens and women in particular enjoy better health and status than before. But there is a long way to go.

The radical way to view Dharavi is not as a piece of land to exploit but an SEZ or Special Economic Zone. The unique character of work and life here should be preserved while upgrading the public amenities and quality of life of its people. That is in the best interest of the city and the economy.

Also we recently had a successful launch of her book @ Crossword Kemps Corner where she did give us a sneak peak of the inspirational stories in the book.

Shall Post the video shortly.

The Book has been written by Rahsmi Bansal & Deepak Gandhi & photos have been compiled by Dee Gandhi.

Publisher: Westland Books

Price: 250

Signing off for now..Untill next time Geeks.

Happy Reading!!

Crossword Bookstores

Never Judge A Book By Its Cover


The Cover of J.K Rowling’s much awaited Adult book ‘The Casual vacancy is out.

 

48 hrs already into its launch The Cover of the book is much under scrutiny for its look and appeal.

 

Critics have pointed out that compared to the Covers of The Harry Potter series , the cover of her book lacks depth and doesn’t strike out differently.

Well we wouldn’t want to compare the Harry Potter series with her upcoming book as they are completely different genres .

 

But the real question is.. Is the Cover more important than the story itself??

 

Do books get sold only on the basis of How attractive is the book Cover?

Image

Or Would you buy a book for the author and their story .

 

Would love to hear from you (Our Dear Critiques & geeks)

 

Signing off..

 

Crossword Bookstores

A Simple Tour Guide To Mumbai with some ‘Cutting Chai & Maska Pao’


Hello To One  & All,

We are back with your Daily Dose of Bookipedia

It’s given fact that everybody and anybody in any part of this wonderful country just loves Amchi Mumbai.

Be it the Gliz & Glamour, The street shopping & food or The Big Dreams this City Shows… we all love a trip to the city who has it all..

So There is this new and very interesting book on the block ‘Cutting Chai & Maska Pao’ with takes you through streets of Amchi Mumbai and describes peculiar mumbaiya language that we all speak like  pandu, popat, bakra, mama and many more such slangs..

You would specially need a cutting chai & maska pao to read this book..A perfect read during this gloomy & rainy weather

This book is for :

  • Mumbai Lovers
  • Mumbai residers
  • Mumbai aspirers
  • Mumbai haters (You are allowed to critize it also)
  • And anybody who wishes to have an intimate Affair with the Maximum City

So we got chatting with The young Ladies behind this unique book

Digantika Mitra, Priya Sheth & Mithila Mehta

A Fun Loving and Bubly trio of Beautiful girls..Just finished college..Heading into the corporate world for now..First time Authors who made a Book out of their college project.

Sounds unconventional right!!

Here’s what they had to say:

1.       With So many Books and Guides on Mumbai, How does your Book stand part?

Cutting Chai and Maska Pao isn’t just any book on Mumbai. It provides alphabetical order to this chaotic city, encapsulating everything that is unique yet ubiquitous to Mumbai. The book captures the essence of popular words and phrases through an interplay of words, photographs and illustrations. Right from colloquial Mumbaiyya phrases to sights, smells and sounds that are typically Mumbai—we take you on an exciting trip around the city!

2.       What is that one special Place in Mumbai that you would recommend to anyone who visits the city?

Priya: One place that I would recommend to a visitor is Colaba Causeway. The street is bubbling with activity at any point of time.  During the day it is lined with hawkers selling beautiful accessories and clothes and at night it is flooded with people making their way to Leopolds or night clubs.

Mithila: No visit to Mumbai is complete without a meal at one of the city’s delightful Irani cafes. The air hangs heavy with nostalgia—it is like a scene from the past! Indulge in a cup of strong Irani tea, accompanied by a plate of maska pao. Don’t forget to chat with the kind old cafe owner by the cashier!

Digantika: My pick is Chor Bazaar. The apparent look of dusty bylanes conceals antiques and priceless collections from the old world. In contrast to its name, it is not a thief’s marketplace but rather a collector’s paradise.  

3.       With a First time collaboration on a book do you think you guys will be collaborating again on a similar book in the future or would you guys plan on developing into individual authors?

We have been flooded by offers to write books on different cities in a similar vein! Bangalore, Kolkata, Delhi…However, Mumbai is the city that was closest to our heart, and Cutting Chai and Maska Pao is a reflection of this. For now, we are just happy to savour the moment and take in the absolutely fantastic response to our first book!

Publisher: Harper Collins

Price: Rs 250

Hope You Had a Good Time reading This..

Do Drop in Your Comments!!

Signing off For Now..Until Next time Geeks

Happy reading

Crossword Bookstores.

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