Wednesday, October 28, 2015


Only Wheat Not White 
Varsha Dixit 


Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this ebook from the author (via Blog Tour hosted by The Book Club) in return for my honest review. I never received any monetary compensation for the same.

Eila Sood is the second Sood daughter from India. She goes to New York, USA to work with OIS Solutions for six months. She plans to stay with her estranged sister Sheela who’s married to an American. Sheela has two adorable sons – Aryan and Adam. Incidentally, her husband’s name is Steve Jobs. That made me smile.

The Sood family had cut off ties with their eldest daughter since she had married a firang. Now you know why the title is what it is.

Warning: Don’t read further if you haven’t read the book. Spoilers galore!

Right from the moment her plane lands in New York, Eila keeps bumping – most times literally – into a blue-eyed ogre. Halfway into the book, we find out that he’s Brett Wright. Despite her mother’s warning to choose “only wheat not white”, Eila finds herself attracted to this restaurateur. Tough times ahead!

Life gets more difficult when Sheela and Steve decide to go separate. Eila carries the burden of the whole family on her slender shoulders, while Sheela wallows in self-pity.

You have to read the full book to find out if a happy ending is possible.

To begin with, I fell in love with the gorgeous cover of Only Wheat Not White.

The story follows Eila’s life along with her sister and her family. It brings to light the lives of NRIs in the USA, especially over the past decade or so when the work scenario has taken a nosedive.

Eila’s character is strongly etched. She’s bold, hard-working and offers a lot of free advice. More than that, it shows how we Indians don’t understand the meaning of “minding our own business” and treat everyone’s problem as our own. She’s an endearing soul and the author has brought that out beautifully in the pages she has penned.

Sheela had obviously started off as a career woman. She marries Steve despite her parents’ strong disapproval because she’s in love. But over the years, despite a loving and helpful mother-in-law and two adorable kids; she falls apart due to her guilt. She feels she has wronged her parents by marrying a firang.

Varsha Dixit subtly brings forth the message about the pressure parents place on their children. The Soods are okay with their daughters going abroad and earning in dollars; living away from them. But they cannot accept an American for a son-in-law.

Steve loves his wife. But he’s unable to accept what she’s become. A realistic situation! I liked the way he patiently waits for his wife to find herself. Lucky Sheela!

All the side characters – Megan, Sandi, Murli, Randall, Cate, Mrs. Das, Judith, Mandy and more – are all well-etched and play their roles to perfection.

I have saved the best for the last – Brett Wright. He’s a hero to die for! A financial whiz turned restaurateur. He surprises himself by falling for this woman who keeps getting under his skin a little more every time they meet; and that’s quite often. The love scenes between Brett and Eila – even the build-up – are truly sizzling; making the reader drool. Kudos to the author!

Having said all that, I do have a couple of peeves about the book. I had to cross at least forty pages before I got absorbed into Eila’s story. Eila appears klutzy in the beginning and the author has used too many incidents to underline this. One or two instances would have sufficed to show the reader this. The book also could have done with a few more rounds of proof-reading to make it read better.

There were a few times I burst out laughing while reading the book. The humour is subtle but very much there. Here are a couple of quotes that made me laugh:

Eila kept frowning at the idiotic smile plastered on Megan’s face. Finally having had enough, Eila sent a message to Megan on the interoffice channel. “Either lose the smile or lose M.” Megan instantly let go of the smile.

“My sister mentioned you are a doctor. What kind?” And ten minutes later Eila realized that was one question she should not have asked. Sameer the neurosurgeon would not shut up. The more he talked, the less Eila listened. Yet she willed her eyes not to stray a millimeter off him. By now the ache had traveled from her cheeks to her neck and the top of her shoulders. By the end of his monologue Eila’s perception of Sameer had completely unraveled. His nose now appeared rather bulbous and his lower lip appeared more bug-bite puffy than sensuous. After hearing him describe what he does in such detail maybe I can actually perform a lumbar puncture.

Verdict: I would recommend this book to anyone who loves romances

The Blurb

What if the one you completely love is the one you simply can't! Twenty-six-year-old Eila Sood moves to America to mend fences with her estranged older sister, Sheela. Eila and the rest of the family in India had cut off ties with Sheela after she married Steve Jacobs, 'out of caste, and out of color'. Elia soon realizes that Sheela's marriage is on the rocks. To help pay Sheela's household bills, Eila takes a second job at an afternoon strip club. When she crosses paths with the owner, the handsome Brett Wright or 'blue-eyed ogre' as Elia calls him, he both infuriates and fascinates her. Brett turns out to be her reluctant and unquestionably sarcastic knight in shining armor. As Eila and Brett spend more time together their desire for each other builds. However, when Brett discovers the true reason for Eila's refusal he storms out of her life, accusing her of being a prejudiced coward. Will Eila find the courage to break stereotypes and embrace her love? Will Brett find solace in the arms of his ex-girlfriend Cate? Will Sheela and Steve divorce? All of these questions and more are answered in Varsha Dixit's latest and humorous and steamy love story.

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Meet the Author

I'm the author of four books and the genre that I write is contemporary romance. Penning stories defines and completes me.I thinks of myself as a borderline obsessive-compulsive dreamer who thinks deep but writes light. A true ‘feel good’ junkie seeking quick fixes, I love a good laugh and a good book. A voracious reader of who dunit mysteries and legal dramas, I did sit down to pen a book on serial killers but finding it impossible to maim or kill anyone, even on paper, I penned a romantic story instead. Thus, I found my true calling – at least for the time being.Even though creativity is gender free, I feel blessed and enriched to be a woman.
Currently, with my family, I'm settled in the US.

You can her @



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Saturday, October 17, 2015

Cover Reveal: A DOG EAT DOGFOOD WORLD by C. Suresh

Cover Reveal:


A hilarious pseudo-history of marketing management, which explicitly denies resemblance to any actual history, and which will be horrified if some semblance be found. The story of a man who discovered that the path of life is strewn with treadmills and, if you get on one by mistake, you could keep running all your life to stay in the same place. The story of how a businessman may just be minding his…err…business and the ‘Invisible Hand’ can cause unexpected consequences to arise out of his innocent actions. There is no point blaming the tale for being exaggerated because that is precisely what it seeks to be – an ‘exaggeratio ad absurdum’ of some facets of the world. Anything you learn from the book – be it the basics of marketing management or a satirical view of Society – you do at your own risk.

The tale only dogs the doings of:

Spike Fortune who only sought to feed dogs and, later, sought more dogs to feed.

Jerry Fortune who, being fortuneless, gets dragged helter-skelter behind his uncle Spike in the latter’s careening pursuit of commercial success and gets sandwiched between Spike and..

Tyke who was Spike’s resident genius on enticing dogs with their wares. He also has to help Spike in his rivalry with..

Tom Rich, who is unwillingly dragged into upstaging Spike and tries to do it by teasing the palates of cats, helped by the bumbling efforts of..

Jasper Rich who would rather be partying than chasing cats with cat-foods.

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Meet The Characters

Spike Fortune, who, being unable to justify his existence by making money, is obsessed with justifying his existence by spending all his inherited wealth. Lead into the paths of commerce, he discovers that, while it may seem attractive to set out to lose money, the natural consequence of having people consider him a loser was indigestible. Having set out to feed dogs, Spike becomes obsessed with feeding more dogs and, later, having more dogs to feed.

Jerry Fortune, who discovers that there are perils to having your livelihood depend on a benevolent uncle. Tied to his uncle’s coat-tails by a need for sustenance, he is dragged helter-skelter behind Spike in the latter’s careening progress in pursuit of commercial success. Having first been a mere interpreter between his uncle, Spike, and the resident marketing guru, Tyke, he later finds that being in the middle can get very uncomfortable, indeed.
Tom Rich, who had never realized that the easy contempt he had for his schoolboy acquaintance could prove so dangerous. Spike’s meteoric rise in the world of Commerce puts him in a position of either having to prove himself better or have all that contempt come back with usurious interest. He drags his nephew, Jasper, along in pursuit of teasing the palates of cats.


All that Spike and Tom had wanted was to be a winner in their respective businesses and, more importantly, in their own private game of one-upmanship. They had no idea that their humble quest would redraw the contours of Society and set in place principles that both businessmen and Society would live by.

Meet the Author

Fiction has been an addiction but the need to make a living took Suresh through Chemical Engineering and a PGDM at IIM-Bangalore and, from thence, to a long 16 year stint in the area of finance with specific expertise in fertilizer subsidies and a further two years as consulting expert in the same area. That, in his words, about sums up the boring part of his life, except for the people he was privileged to meet.

Otherwise, he can be described as a mess of contradictions – a bookworm but avid trekker; alone but never lonely; enjoys solitude but loves company; lazy but a perfectionist, the litany is endless. Trekking, which side-tracked him from the writing for which he quit his job, is a major passion and he does, at least, one trek in the Himalayas every year in addition to numerous local treks.

He reignited his passion for writing with a fairly popular blog The blog has been rated among the Top 5 humour blogs in India, twice in succession - in 2014 and 2015 - by BlogAdda, and has also been listed third among the Top Humour Blogs by Baggout.
He also has a short story published in a collection “Uff Ye Emotions” and has edited and written a novelette in an ebook anthology “Sirens spell danger”

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Thursday, October 15, 2015

Blog Tour: METRO DIARIES by Namrata

Metro Diaries 

The Blurb

Love is one of the most amazing feelings on this earth, one that makes you the most powerful person or the most helpless person in a split second. These stories capture those feelings of despair, longing, love, lust, desire, want, dejection and admiration to create deja vu. Hold onto your hearts as you flip through these pages and take a walk down the memory lane, as "metro diaries" will revive your innermost feelings and imbibe in you the magic of love. Touching, amusing and deeply moving, metro diaries - love classics are tales that will hold you from start till end. 
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Meet the Author

Namrata is a prolific blogger known by the name Privy Trifles in the blogosphere who romances life through her writings and aspires to make love the universal language. She dons various hats between that of a contributing author to 8 anthologies a reviewer for leading publishing houses an editor to various books and a columnist. Apart from that she is also the editor for an online magazine called Writer's Ezine. Having mastered the nuances of finance till recently she also held the title of an investment banker closely to let it go to embrace her love for writing fully.

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Thursday, October 1, 2015

Blog Tour: THE SECOND COMING by Shubha Menon

The Second Coming
Shubha Menon


Disclaimer: I received an author-signed paperback of this book via The Book Club in return for my honest review. I have NOT received any monetary compensation for the same.

Mini has been married to Shyam for eighteen years and they have become habits to each other. They live in Delhi. Working for a wedding planner as the creative head, Mini has still not given up on her aspirations for finding her Dream Lover or DL as she prefers to call him. Being overweight, her main focus in life is to lose weight and have a hot, red-blooded TDH falling in love with her. Sizzling sex would be a definite bonus. 

Highly dependent on her husband for many things, Mini is still determined to become self-sufficient when she gets a chance to go on an assignment to Mumbai. Despite her husband’s protests, she goes to stay with her school friend Aditi, while working on a big fat royal wedding to be held in Mumbai. The head of production in the city, Rustom, seems the answer to her prayers. Is he what she believes he is? Is it worth risking her marriage? Caution thrown to the winds, Mini explores new territory.

Read the book to find out if Mini’s dreams materialise. 

I rolled on the floor laughing from the moment I started reading this book by Shubha Menon. The author has introduced Mini’s character realistically with many touches of humour. I could so relate to Mini’s feelings and aspirations. Her husband Shyam is also very real – a typical guy who takes his wife for granted. 

The story is mostly from Mini’s point of view – about what makes her happy; what bugs her; how her creativity bursts forth, especially in emergencies; how her feelings oscillate from one end to the other. There’s more, but it’s best you read the book before I let out spoilers.

Rustom is a typical hot guy who’s into a sorry marriage and a son to boot. He has no qualms about having extra marital affairs. Is he the Dream Lover Mini has been searching for all her life?

The novel is well written bringing together many sequences. It portrays Mini’s professional life – the scenes from wedding plans, all well researched. Then there is the constant war within Mini – to eat well and drink merrily OR to diet and lose weight. It cannot get more real. I am sure a lot of us face this. And her fear of menopause makes the reader feel for her. 

A number of lines that I found funny and well-written. I need to share those here:

Marriage was such a joke, she reflected, but weddings could be sublime.

She was fat, but she too had romantic feelings. She could feel them in her bones. It was a different matter that she couldn’t feel her bones.

Everything was fair in menopause and war, she thought, steeling her resolve.

But suits didn’t have the ability to think on their feet. They needed a PowerPoint presentation even to execute a sneeze.

Hey! Why don’t we all go for a fuckation… er… a vacation?

Maybe God had recalled all dream lovers to his factory once he’d figured out that they were defective pieces. 

While the book was a fun ride throughout, one point rankled. There were a number of repeats when it came to Mini’s ranting from within. They could have been cut down to make the book a crisper read. 

Otherwise, The Second Coming by Shubha Menon is one long fun read.

The Blurb

A wedding planner who believes in fairytale weddings, Mini yearns for romance in her own marriage. The magic of the initial years has vanished, leaving behind a hunger that she assuages with chocolate. Mini would love to change her situation, but she is over the hill, overweight and under confident. The chances of having a hot affair with a happening man are dim, if not non-existent.

An erstwhile royal scion decides to wed a Bollywood starlet and Mini is sent to Mumbai to plan the celebrations. The manager of the Mumbai office is young Rustom, the answer to Mini’s secret dreams. Goaded by impending menopause, Mini decides it’s now or never. She simply has to take a second stab at romance.

Rustom is a ladies man. He is also married, and a skirt chaser. Mini decides to shape up and get into the kind of skirts Rustom would want to chase.

Working together closely, Rustom and Mini fall into each others’ arms. Meanwhile, her husband gets wind of the affair and tries to reclaim her. Now Mini must choose between heady romance and steady matrimony.

But soon, Mini discovers that her romantic idol has feet of clay. In a dramatic end, the trusty husband stages a timely rescue. And Mini learns that a rock solid husband is worth many a dream lover.
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Meet the Author

This is her first book. She is currently working as a Senior Creative Director with Ogilvy Delhi. A practising Buddhist, she dreams of living in the hills where she can read, write and grow climbing roses. She lives in Delhi with her husband, daughter and two Dachshunds. 

You can stalk her @


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