‘The Prince Of Romance’

Hello & Welcome back Book lovers. 

Hope you are enjoying the Festive Season with lots of sweets, lights and firecrackers.

Well this week on the hot seat is really buzzing with excitement.

After so many requests from fans on FB and Twitter we just had to interview the Prince of Indian Romance who sentimental and tear dropping love stories have touched millions of hearts in India.

Meet Ravinder Singh, the boy next door. Tall, Dark,Handsome & Intelligent, he has all the makings of a romantic hero. But his charm lies in his narrative writing. A die hard romantic, as many people know him, you will be high on emotions after reading his books. We know fans who have cried buckets after reading his books and worship him like a Love Guru.

Author of 2 Bestselling Books, ‘I too had a Love Story’ & ‘Can Love Happen Twice ‘, Ravinder Singh’s 1st book was a narrative account of his true love story. Though when he release his second there were rumors that it was a true story but Mr Singh completely dismissed it and has said it is based on certain life experiences.

His Books have been our Bestsellers list for a while now and he his book’ Can Love Happen twice was also nominated for the Popular Award for The Economist Crossword Book Award 2011

Ravinder Singh has currently completely his MBA from ISB and is working with Microsoft in Hyderabad. He recently got married to Khusboo Chauhan, his long-time girlfriend which left thousands of girls heartbroken.

Here is an excerpt of his Interview..

  1.    You broke a lot of hearts when you recently got married.How has Ravinder Singh changed after Marriage?

Well Ravinder Singh hasn’t changed at all after marriage. But yes Ravinder Singh has come across new changes, as is expected in the school of marriage. And I come across them right from the beginning of the day. For ex: I now don’t wake up alone but there is someone next to me and its a beautiful feeling to see my wife beside me as the day begins. There are new set of responsibilities and expectations (that’s true for both my wife Khusboo and me) which are outdone by the charm of this warm relationship.

2.       Tell us something about Khusboo, where did it all begin, The Proposal  and is she anything like the character Simar?

The best way for an author to tell about someone important in his/her life is to sketch them as a protagonist in the book and narrate the story. May be I will do it that way. And for the latter part of your question: No she is unlike Simar (from my second book) and for that matter unlike Khushi (from my first book). I am mentioning this because of lot of readers of mine have related Khushboo with either of the two characters from my books.

3.       How do you handle all the female fans who absolutely adore you and your books?       

It is always a special feeling to hear from and get back to fans and readers. It is they who make me feel special and I respect their love for my work and me. As far as fan following is concerned I wouldn’t divide it on the grounds of gender. Having said that, I believe it is normal to see more female fans for a male author and male fan following for female authors (that’s the case with Bollywood and sports as well).

4.       You will be soon coming out with a book on Short Love stories on the competition done by Penguin. How difficult was it for you to judge it ?

Yes that’s right. Well we got thousands of stories and by the end of the entire selection process we had to arrive at best 25. So you can understand how difficult it would have been for all of us (and not just me). I think it was an interesting experience. For a person like me who is not at all a great reader it was a lot of effort but the best thing was that – They were short stories. I would complete reading them in 20 mins at max. I am super impressed by the variety of submissions. The diversity of those stories took my heart away. Some had painful ending while some had left me with a smile by the last paragraph of it.

5.       How big a Punjabi are you. Your Punjabi Fetishes?

It’s in the DNA. It is perfectly fine with me to wear “Punjabi Jutti” along with a jeans in my office. I am poor in western dance but on the contrary I am well equipped with “Bhangra” so much so that once in the US in a disc I made the entire disc dance onto the beats of “Dhol”. Those “Memaan Shemaan :-)” simply couldn’t resist NOT Dancing. The song was a Punjabi no. from Bend It Like Beckham. The first peg will surely be a “Patiala Peg“. I would admire a “Patiala Salwar” more on a girl’s legs than jeans. And the CD system of my car just has the collection of “Punjabi songs“. So as I said – It’s in the DNA.

6.       Your first book was based on your personal experience; did writing the book ease your emotions on what you went through after your loss?

Certainly. In fact that was the whole purpose behind writing it. I believe in the philosophy that sharing your joy with others multiplies your happiness and sharing your grief with others and reduces your pain.

7.       Your 3 favourite Love stories..        

A walk to remember by Nicholas Spark. Love Story by Eric Segal. There is a commonality in these two stories with my story in ‘I too had a love story’. And the 3rd would be ‘The Notebook’ by Nicholas Spark again, for the way he has described the element of time and things that have changed in the course of time in that love story.

8.       Your ideal Romantic date?  

Hmmm….Driving up the hills, late in the evening when it is foggy in the months of winter. Nice romantic music in the car. Chilled champagne followed by a warm dinner. Pick up a conversation as if the two of you don’t know each other and discover the new being in yourselves. Drive down the hills early in the morning before the fog settles down. Have a cup of tea at some road side dhaaba in the mid way. My life in Chandigarh and my trips to hills of Kasauli had left me with these thoughts.

9.       A romantic catchphrase or line that you have used on women a lot?       

If it is about ‘a lot of women’ my line is – You may fall in love with the book, but resist falling in love with the author of the book 🙂

10.   How do you manage the time to write from your hectic schedule?

Where there is a will there is a way 🙂

11.   Your fans are waiting for 3rd Romantic Blockbuster from you. When is that going to happen..

Don’t know. Apparently the 3rd one in line is not on romance. It is something very different yet special. Early next year people will get to know what it is. But that does not mean that I am not going to write romantic novels in future.

Publisher: Penguin Books

Price: Rs 125

Signing Off For Now..

Until Next Time Geeks..

Happy Reading!

Crossword Bookstores.


Award Winner From a Land Far Far Away…

Welcome Back Book Lovers..       

As you know we had The Economist Crossword Book Award held Last month in Mumbai where the winners in various categories of Fiction, Non Fiction, Translation & Popular were announced.

This week we got chatty with  our Fiction Winner, Anuradha Roy  who has beautifully penned the book ‘The Folded Earth’. This is her second book, her first book was ‘An Atlas Of Impossible Longing’ was published in 2008.

Anuradha resides from a small town Ranikhet in North India. She holds a degree from Cambridge and also has been a journalist. Away from the sight and sounds of city life she loves spending hours cooking, walking her Dog Biscoot across the forest and hilly areas of Ranikhet. With lower cell phone coverage’s, slower internet speeds and limited access to post, she enjoys her quiet, slow and semi urban/rural life.

Her first book has also been previously Shortlisted for the Crossword Book Award

Along with her husband, Anuradha runs Publishing Company Permanent Black which publishes books on South Asian history, politics and environment studies.

Small towns hold a myriad of untold stories and unexpected inspirations which at times go unheard and unseen by city folks.We have met a lot of authors who have migrated to a life in small towns and have shun their self away from fast lives and are completely immersed in writing and literature

Read more to know more about Ms Roy..

1.       This year the list of fiction nominees had previous winners, booker nominees. What were your sentiments when your name was announced as the winner of the Fiction Award?

I felt like the wildcard entrant at Wimbledon who came out of nowhere and won the championship.

2.       When and why did you decide to move into the small town of Ranikhet ?

My husband and I moved to Ranikhet in 2001, when we started our own publishing house. We both prefer living where there are forests and hills and we both like the slower rhythms of small town living.

3.       Does the place inspire your writing as well, as your previous books talk a story evolving in small town in North India?

Place is as crucial to the narrative as the characters in both my novels. In both books the places are physically small, but the worlds and histories they contain are anything but small.

4.       A Day in the life of Anuradha Roy?

It’s just the usual kind of day. Only instead of commuting to the office I walk in the forest; instead of buses and cars the roads have foxes and martens; instead of writing up presentations and strategies I write stories. And I design the books Permanent Black publishes.

5.       Favorite Authors

I have no favourite authors. I get obsessed with particular writers and try to read every scrap they’ve written over a few months, and then move on to someone else.

6.       Favorite Musicians

On some days it’s Dire Straits or K.D. Lang, on others it might be Ustad Abdul Karim Khan or Schubert.

7.       Your current read

I’m reading Penelope Fitzgerald, a British writer I had never read before. Her novel, The Bookshop, starts out tongue-in-cheek and light but ends like a Greek tragedy in which all the grandeur has been peeled away to create something very bleak, offering no comfort at all.

8.       Your most quirky habits.

It’s not a habit, it’s a disability of a kind – I can’t tell left from right so I get lost even in cities I’ve known for years and I can’t read maps.

9.       You have also been long listed for the DSC and Man Asia Booker prize. Your sentiments on the same

A lot of people draw up their reading lists from these longlists and shortlists so I’m happy when my book gets nominated for a prize. It means the book will get more widely read and known.

10.   Your views on how has Indian writing evolved in India. Do you feel that there is an outburst in Indian fiction writing?

I feel as if everyone I know is writing a novel. There are new authors and new books everyday. The biggest change has been the huge growth in commercial fiction so that now there are many kinds of novels being written in English in India– ranging from pulp to crime thrillers to literary fiction.

11.   And is English Literature dying in India and is it replaced by Mass Fiction writing?

No, I think they have completely different readerships.

12.   Anything in the pipeline for a 3rd book.                                  

Nothing yet worth talking about.

About ‘The Folded Earth’

In a remote town in the Himalaya, Maya tries to put behind her a time of great sorrow. By day she teaches in a school and at night she types up drafts of a magnum opus by her landlord, a relic of princely India known to all as Diwan Sahib. Her bond with the eccentric scholar and her friendship with a village girl, Charu, seem to offer her the chance of a new life in Ranikhet, where lush hills meet clear skies. As Maya finds out, no refuge is remote or small enough. The world she has come to love, where people are connected with nature, is endangered by the town’s new administration. The impending elections are hijacked by powerful outsiders who sow division and threaten the future of her school. Charu begins to behave strangely, and Maya soon understands that a new boy in the neighbourhood may be responsible for changes in her friend. When Diwan Sahib’s nephew arrives to set up his trekking company on their estate, she is drawn to him despite herself, but his disappearances into the mountains evoke painful echoes of the past. By turns poetic, elegiac and comic, The Folded Earth is a many-layered and powerful narrative about characters struggling with their pasts – a novel that poignantly reveals the strange shapes that India’s religious and social conflicts can assume even on distant mountain tops.

Publisher: Hachette India

Price: Rs 350           


Here is the Link of Anuradha Roy’s speech when she won the Fiction award.

Signing Off for Now..

Until Next Time Geeks.

Happy Reading!

Crossword Bookstores