THE ONE MAN BY ANDREW GROSS |BOOK REVIEW 


Title : The One Man 


Author : Andrew Gross 

Pages: 412

Publisher: Pan Macmillan 

Published on: August 23, 2016

Genre: Historical And Thriller

Goodreads rating: 4.34

~Synopsis ~

1944. Physics professor Alfred Mendl is separated from his family and sent to the men’s camp, where all of his belongings are tossed on a roaring fire. His books, his papers, his life’s work. The Nazis have no idea what they have just destroyed. And without that physical record, Alfred is one of only two people in the world with his particular knowledge. Knowledge that could start a war, or end it.

Nathan Blum works behind a desk at an intelligence office in Washington, DC, but he longs to contribute to the war effort in a more meaningful way, and he has a particular skill set the U.S. suddenly needs. Nathan is fluent in German and Polish, he is Semitic looking, and he proved his scrappiness at a young age when he escaped from the Polish ghetto. Now, the government wants him to take on the most dangerous assignment of his life: Nathan must sneak into Auschwitz, on a mission to find and escape with one man.


~My Thoughts ~

This is a historical fiction + thriller in which a rescue mission is being planned to get Professor Alfred Mendl from a camp in Auschwitz and bring him to America.  Nathan Blum is given this mission,  who has a history of escaping from under the nose of the Nazi government.  

This book is so so good, it’s  fast paced and kept me on the edge throughout.  I have read many books set in world War II but this book is so unique and the whole concept is different.  Sneaking into a camp which is guarded by nazi government and then  getting a man from the camp,  is not easy to write about,  but the author has done a fantastic job.  He made it look so real.  I was literally transported to this world ,  I felt so much for all the characters. The character development was perfect as we see how Alfred Mendl and Nathan Blum find each other and whether or not they will make it out of the prison.  

The writing is descriptive but only when it was needed. The chapters are short,  ending at cliffhanger sometimes. It also has some scientific formulas and touch to it,  which doesn’t seem confusing at all.  

The book first starts in the present where there is an old man who is telling a story to his daughter ,  and then the story is transported to the past when the actual mission occurs. Only in the end do we get to know who this old man is ,  and all our questions are answered .  

The last 100 pages kept me up at night and well ,  this book broke my heart into tiny little pieces ,  so obviously I cried .  🙂 

All in all,  this is a book for historical fiction lovers and for those who love to read thrillers.  It will definitely make your heart race.  Do give it a try and before you know it,  you’ll be halfway through the story.  

I gave this book a 5/5 stars.  Definitely one of the best books I read this year .  

I was given a copy by   Pan Macmillan India to give an unbiased review. 

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X by Sue Grafton | Book Review 

Title : X 
Author : Sue Grafton 

Pages: 492

Publisher: Pan Macmillan 

Published on: August 11, 2016

Genre: Crime and Mystery 


“In hindsight, I marvel how clueless I was

.. What I ask myself even now is whether I should have picked up the truth any faster than I did.,  which was not nearly fast enough.” 


~Synopsis ~

A glamorous red head wants to locate the son she put up for adoption thirty two years ago –  an easy two hundred bucks for people. I. Kinsey Millione. But when kinsey finds she was paid with market bills,  and her client is nowhere to be found,  it becomes clear the mystery woman has something to hide. 

Meanwhile, in helping the window of an old friend,  the recently murdered P. I. Pete Wolinksy, with some paperwork,  Kinsey uncovers a link between the late investigator and an unhinged man with a history of running lives. 

As Kinsey investigates this sociopath further,  she soon becomes his next target.  Now Kinsey must prove her case against him,  before she becomes his next victim.  

~My thoughts ~

The story starts off with a prologue,  narrated in third person,  about a female named Teddy Xanakis and her problems with her husband Ari, and how this may include Kinsey Millhone.

Then the story changes to first person told from Kinsey’s perspective who is a private investigator.  Kinsey is given an assignment from a lady who wants to locate her son she had put up for adoption long back.  Along with this,  she is helping her colleague’s widow with putting together some files where she finds something offbeat.  We also read about her new neighbors and her landlord,  Henry’s attemp with water conservation in grave detail.  All this happening at once,  which I thought was put up in a very strategic and clean manner.  

The author has released 23 books before featuring Kinsey Millhone,  and I was a bit apprehensive at first since I didn’t know anything about the characters and had no background knowledge.  However,  this was resolved from the very first page,  we get to know about Kinsey and her life a little, with a great introduction to the story. 

But after 80 pages or so,  it looses it’s pace where Kinsey describes each and everything in detail and it got a bit hard for me to keep on reading, but the story line was so good that I had to know the conclusion.  

I personally liked the characters, especially Kinsey,  who is smart,  Witty,  sarcastic and curious. Her relationship with others is also well developed throughout the book.

The author ends the book quite abruptly which will make me pick up her next book.  The only problem I had with the book was how slow it got in between.  

If you’re the type of person who like to sit back and enjoy your crime thriller slowly and in detail,  then this may be the book for you.  

I gave it 3/5 stars. 

I was provided with a review copy by Pan Macmillan India to give an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.  

 

THE NIGHTINGALE BY KRISTIN HANNAH 


~Synopsis~

​Despite their differences, sisters Viann and Isabelle have always been close. Younger, bolder Isabelle lives in Paris while Viann is content with life in the French countryside with her husband Antoine and their daughter. But when the Second World War strikes, Antoine is sent off to fight and Viann finds herself isolated so Isabelle is sent by their father to help her. 
As the war progresses, the sisters’ relationship and strength is tested. With life changing in unbelievably horrific ways, Viann and Isabelle will find themselves facing frightening situations and responding in ways they never thought possible as bravery and resistance take different forms in each of their actions.

~My Review~

Man.  What can I say.  This was probably the best book I read this year.  So this review  is going to be pretty informal because I NEED everyone to read this book.  

This is a story set in France about two sisters during world War II. Isabelle is a rebellious one who wants to do something for her country,  while Vianne is a bit careful with  whatever she does while the war is taking over.  

The writing style of this story  is so gripping.  I could not put it down at all, and I read it in a day! It was fast paced with so many twists and heart wrenching episodes.  Wow.  This book is soooo goood. 

The story line is I think the best thing about this book.  You know historical fiction,  sisterly love , romance,  patriotism,  adventure,  love,  sacrifice,  AND BASICALLY WAR SO ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN.  SERIOUSLY.  

IT BROKE MY HEART INTO TINY LITTLE PEICES AND MADE ME CRY AND LAUGH AND  FEEL SO MANY THINGS ALTHOGETHER.

This is one of those books where I cannot just properly tell you about the story because I can’t.  It’s so good.  1000 stars! 

This book is love.  Read it.  Please.  

On reading Harry Potter for the first time 

I am 20 years old and I just started reading Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling 2 months ago.  

Once I started with the first book,  many people were asking me why am I  even reading the books. They said I could just watch the movies and perhaps it’s a children’s book.  I didn’t really give them an explanation though.  I have been waiting to read this series all my life and I will read them no Matter what.

I don’t know the whole story but I have seen the first 4 movies and I do know about some climax scenes,  But I don’t care at all about this and won’t let this come in my way of reading the one series I have been dreaming of since I was a kid.  
But I made it clear that I’ll buy the first editions of the books and only then,  I will start it. Fortunately, I was able to get my hands on the first edition and at last I started reading Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone on July 5th,  2016. 

I have read the first two books till  now and honestly,   it was a whole another experience for me.  

I know this might sound silly,  but I used to think about how the books may turn out to be,  or how I’ll feel about it or how I will share about my experience but I have to say,  it’s different.  

When I was reading the first book I felt a bit homely? Like I was reading this  book for the first time,  still all this felt so familiar,  the characters, this world,  everything about this book made me feel like home (well obviously not because I had seen the movie but you get it). 

I felt so bad in the beginning and hated The Dursleys, loved when Hagrid comes for Harry and got goosebumps when he said,  “yer a wizard,  Harry”,  “I’m a what?”.  (absolutely loved that scene!). There is something about the writing. It’s so inviting and simple and addictive.  

I read the second book after two months and completed it in a day and now I’m craving for the third book!   But I will wait at least for a month because honestly I don’t want the series to end that quickly.  

I equally loved the second book and what can I say? I’m so happy I finally started reading this series.  :”) 

So I want to say one thing,  it’s definitely not just a children’s book.  It’s so much more.  There’s friendship,  hardwork,  secrets,  and most of all it feels so original that you have to read it atleast once in your life.  

I would really love to share my whole experience while reading the series here,  and hopefully I will.  But this is not a review of Harry Potter or anything like that.  This is just a simple hearty note from a fan who just waited a little longer to experience the magic.  

SUMMER SECRETS BY JANE GREEN 


~Synopsis~

June,  1998. The twenty seven year old,  Cat Coombs is struggling.  She lives in London,  works as a journalist,  and parties hard.  When she discovers the identity of the father she never knew she had, it sends her into a spiral. She makes mistakes,  that cost her the budding friendship of the only women who have ever welcomed her.  And nothing is ever the same after that.  

June,  2014. Cat’s  life has come full circle.  She wants to make amends to those she has hurt.  Her quest takes her to Nantucket,  the gorgeous New England island where the women she once called family still live.  What Cat doesn’t realise is that these women,  her real father’s daughters,  have secrets of their own.  As the past collides with the present,  Cat must confront the darkest things in her own life and uncover the depths of someone’s need for revenge.  

~My Review ~

Right from the very first page I was hooked up to the book. Cat is witty,  smart and most of all real. Her character felt so genuine that I had to know what will come out of her life.  And not just Cat,  each and every character is written  with such delicacy that you will relate to them on some level.  

 Cat is an alcohol addict in denial till about the first half of the book and the rest of the story is about how she deals with  her Condition.  However,  being the main theme,  it doesn’t at any point feels like there is too much of it.  

Before picking up this book I thought it will mostly be a chic lit or a very light read but it has a very deeper meaning to it.  

How alcoholism affects her and her loved ones is shown so genuinely that you end up feeling so much for them,  shedding a teardrop or two. 

The Author has written this book at the right pace,  things falling apart and then falling back to places but you’re  still anxious about what will come out of it. 

One thing that I want to talk more about is Cat’s  struggle with alcohol addiction.  It was such a beautiful journey with some definite ups and downs,  I remember myself screaming “Nooooo..!!” while reading a climax scene and had to stop so that I could contemplate what just happened! 

The alcoholic is like a tornado roaring his way through the lives of others.  Hearts are broken.  Sweet relationships are dead.  Affections have been uprooted.  Selfish and inconsiderate habits have kept the home in turmoil.  

I found myself getting attached to her character so much and I will repeat this again that her character and her story altogether felt so believable.  Her character development was so wonderful,  it felt like you know this person and her struggles and watching her growing as a person.  

Although,  I want to point out it had some things which I felt were quite unnecessary  or a bit too cheesy,  but that does not come in the way at all! 

So yes,  you will cry,  laugh,  blush and smile while you’re reading this book.  It’s definitely a whole package giving a lot of insight into alcoholism,  friendship,  parenthood and relationships.  

I gave it 4/5 stars.  

Thankyou so much Pan Macmillan India for providing me with this book to give an honest review.  

I loved it.  :”) 

 

CORPOKSHETRA BY DEEPAK KAUL 


~Synopsis~

The Pandavas have returned home after 13 years of exile. And they are demanding their stake in Hastinapur Inc. 

But the Kauravas, led by the haughty Duryodhana, aren’t ready to give them a penny. The battle lines are drawn, only this war is in the present-day kurukshetra – the corporate boardroom. 

As the Kauravas and the Pandavas don their sharpest suits, Krishna- the wily Consultant – strategises for peace. 

This is a humorous, modern take on the Mahabharata (with due apologies to Rishi Ved Vyas). 

An epic Story retold for the MBA generation. 

~My Review~ 

This is a retelling of an epic mythology Mahabharata but in the corporate world. 

I thoroughly enjoyed it! I think the characters did justice to the actual ones. 

It doesn’t really matter if you know everything about the epic. It’s easily understandable and builds a world of it’s own. 

The story is so gripping and interesting along with being witty and humorous! 

The book is hardly 150 pages, so It is a Very very quick read. It’s very simple and easy and will definitely help if you’re going through a reading slump! 😉 

I just personally thought that the use of some sanskrit words was unnecessary. Having said that it doesn’t really come in the way while reading. 

Also, the story is quite relatable, since it’s set in the current world, like using WhatsApp for communicating, etc. The whole idea about the book is quite unique. 

Overall, I highly enjoyed this book, giving it a 3.5/ 5 stars. I would definitely recommend it! It’s super witty and interesting and come one its a quick read! 

Thankyou so much writers melon and the author for providing me with this book to give an honest review. 

 

SECOND LIVES BY ANISH SARKAR 


~Synopsis~ 

Three old friends – Sara, Neel and Omar – reunite in Goa after the sudden death of Rachel Fernandes, a member of their group. Discovering that Rachel, a sports journalist, had been doing a story on the brutal killing of a foriegn tourist, they are puzzled by her interest in such a grisly crime. It emerges that Rachel’s investigation went far beyond a single murder, and their lives are soon under threat too.

With a Traumatic event from their teenage years coming back to haunt them, the trio realises that the mystery has its roots in their own past. In the midst of battling their personal demons, they make a desperate plan to flush out a sadistic killer in the sylvan setting of their old boarding school in the Himalayan foothills. With the body count rising and long-buried secrets tumbling out, will they succeed? 

~My Review~ 

Honestly, I didn’t know anything about this book and when I read the blurb, I did not expect it to be thaaat good! 

I enjoyed it so much! It has everything to make it a bestseller (yes!). It’s told from multiple perspectives, i.e. Sarah, Omar and neel. It is a very quick read, since chapters are very small and end at a cliffhanger. A backstory is also going on, which fits perfectly with the present story and keeps up with the pace. 

Literally so many things are going on at the same time, still everything is easily understandable, where I just want to know exactly what is happening or going to happen next. Plus it’s set in Goa (need I say more?) 

The main climax though. I will not say anything BUT. THE. CLIMAX. 

Wow. 

This book is amazing and I highly, highly recommend it. Please you will miss out on something AWESOME. 

I think this is the best crime thriller I have ever read by an Indian author. There. I said it. Please check it out! 

So my rating is (which is quite obvious I guess) 5/5 stars. 

Thankyou so much Westland Publishers for providing me with a copy to give an honest opinion about the book.