Book Review - INKREDIA - Luwan of Brida

Title - INKREDIA - Luwan of Brida
Author - Sarang Mahajan
Genre - Fiction(Thriller)
Publisher - Gloryburg
ISBN - 978-81-933658-0-9

The story is an Indian equivalent of "Lord of the Rings". I usually do not compare the books/story but as  was reading this book, I felt that it was really well written and closely resembled that of the story penned by J.R.R.Tolkien though each and different - be it with the plot or otherwise.

It begins with a map. I wondered what these Town/Village/Noble City/Imperial City/Kingdom was all about but as and when I started reading it, I could make the connect. This is Book 1 and when it ended, I was glad that I read the book and the story is yet to be complete since Book 2 INKREDIA - The Castle of Tashkrum will be released soon.

I wouldn't go deep into the story since it a simple plot weaved with complex structure of events that makes the story incredible. It all begins with Luwan who refuses to pay tax to Lord Gruwak which forces him to leave his village. His sister Meg joins him.

Before that, Luwan was handed over a book which had some secret powers by his mother. He had not seen his father but had only heard about him. He sets on a journey as told to do so by the book. He gets chased by Ghork Riders who were powerful and wielded extra ordinary powers but gets help from Narjo who helps him in resisting thm.

Just then all were going good, thinks take a drastic turn. Just then, both Luwan and Meg meets up with Kiliarn who promises them to help reach their destination. He had some unbelievable powers and never reveals until the end as to who he actually was.

Did Ghork Riders manages to stop the sibling?
Who deployed them?
Is not paying tax, that much of an offence which made Lord Gruwak to hire the Ghork Riders?
What is the legacy of Luwan?
Where he was set to and why?

Read this story to understand what exactly this fast paced novel is all about?

The book is available on Amazon

Book Review - Asian Herbs

Title - Asian Herbs
Author - Sudhir Ahluwalia
Genre - Non Fiction(Wellness)
Publisher - Pothi.com
ISBN - 978-9387480889

The author - Sudhir Ahluwalia has written few books. As he was an IFS officer, the details that had gone into his books were stunning and would make even a novice to become an expert, if he/she has grasped all the information which was given in minute detail in the book.

I had the opportunity to read his other book as well - Holy Herbs and has already written my review about it on my blog, earlier, today.

This book surprisingly was a self published one though  felt that books of these genre/nature should be picked up by renowned publishing houses which would act as a bridge between the author and the end reader as they would have much higher and better reach.

The book has pictures of various plants and trees. It begins with an ancient historical overview and then proceed further with Aromatic Herbs of India.

Then the book touch base upon Sacred Trees of India which includes Peepal, Banyan, Neem, Mango, Ashoka, Rudraksha among others.

The book then talks about Spices of India followed by Herbs in Chinese cuisine. It also talks about Marijuana and Ginseng in the end. Yes. It talks about Marijuana(Medicinal and Recreational use).

How these herbs are used in food and drink, medicine, history and production were explained in great detail which is not only an eye-opener but would make you sit through it from the beginning till the end. 

What is stunning is the references - Yes, It runs for 50 pages which shows how extensively author has researched various books before coming up with his own which certainly needs an applause/appreciation.

The book is available on Amazon

My take on Aji-no-moto

Aji-No-Moto is a Japanese brand which is been in the market for more than 7 decades. The product is exported to more than 120 countries. The product is based on one of the five tastes, our tongue receptor can recognize. It is called UMAMI.

Professor Kikunae Ikeda discovered this taste which came from Glutamate.

Now Stop!

Have you heard about this somewhere?

Yes. There was lot of hue and cry about this a while ago. If you could not recollect it instantly, you would now do it when I say MSG which is the short form on Mono Sodium Glutamate.

While few brands suffered because of wrong propaganda raised against it, I was surprised when I was cleared of all my doubts in one of the awareness meet organised by the brand. The meet saw the presence of renowned dietician Dr Dharini Krishnan, Dr Divya Purushotham and Guinness World Record Holder Chef M S Rajmohan. 

What surprised me the most was the mention of the product's presence in Mother's milk. Yes. The breast milk contains MSG. Do we say it is unsafe? We never did and we never will.

MSG not only adds taste to the food naturally but can also satiate your hunger. Most importantly, the product is not made from artificial sources but from natural ingredients like Sugarcane and Tapioca in India whereas elsewhere, it is derived from Corn, Rice and Sugar beet.

The process is simple

1. Sugarcane is taken to the factory where the juice is extracted
2. Molasses obtained from sugarcane juices are fermented to get glutamic acid
3. Glutamic acid is first neutralised
4. It is then crystallized to obtain MSG
5. MSG crystals are dried and packed

As you could see, it is the same fermentation process which is used to turn milk into curd. Fermentation is also used in making dosa batter, cheese etc.,

There are few more facts about MSG I wanted to share it here:

1. MSG is non-allergic
2. It is a taste enhancer and can be used by all. The research shows it i safe for all human beings including infants and pregnant women.
3. MSG does not cause cancer or high blood pressure
4. MSG has 1/3rd the sodium content compared to table salt
5. Glutamate naturally occur in food. Foods labeled "No MSG" contains MSG and hence this self declaration is prohibited in various countries.
6. Glutamates including MSG are found in abundant in tomatoes, cheese, kombu, seaweed and other food

Go ahead. Eat and taste Umami induced Aji-No-Moto who has also introduced their other range of products which includes Hapima (Crispy Fry Mix,  Fried Rice Mix(Original and Hot & Spicy)) and Blendy 3-in-1 Instant Coffee/Tea packs.

Its time to "Eat Well, Live Well"

Book Review - Holy Herbs

Title - Holy Herbs
Author - Sudhir Ahluwalia
Genre - Non Fiction(Healthy Living/Wellness)
Publisher - Fingerprint
ISBN - 978-81-7599-446-1

Gone are the days where we use to get the treatment for our ailments at home from our grandmother or great grandmother. These days, the families have become nuclear(mostly) and joint families have become a rarity. We have also started neglecting the natural products which would do no harm but bring home only the goodness and started running behind packed food items which are nothing but processed and preserved.

Though we are now going back to the (g)olden days to bring back the organic food, we lost the track of various herbs and plants which has been effectively used by out forefathers/ancestors to address various concerns. When I saw this book and most importantly the author's profile, I knew for sure that this is going to be one awesome read and my expectations were not proved wrong.

The book is divided into 5 chapters namely Historic Overview, The Bible and the Herbs of The Holy Anointing Oil, Herbs in Ancient Incenses and Perfumes, Sacred Trees and Culinary Herbs in The Bible

The subject was well researched and written. Since the author was an Indian Forest Service Officer, this came to me as no wonder. Pictures were used wherever required which makes the book even more appealing. The beauty of the book lies in establishing the facts about these herbs with the historic, cultural, religious and scientific connection between the East and the West.

The book is a treasure trove of information!!

The book is available on Amazon

Book Review - The Last Attractor Of Chaos

Title - The Last Attractor Of Chaos
Author - Abhinav Singh
Genre - Fiction(Thriller)
Publisher - Notion Press
ISBN - 978-1-64249-203-3

A fast paced thriller that would keep you hooked from the beginning till the end. The story, I would say would not only come under Thriller but it also has a pinch of Sci-Fi attached to it making it a great read for those who loves these two genres.

When I was reading the story, I was feeling that I was seeing Dr Strange and Underworld Evolution together(in a different concept). No where you would feel bored when you were reading the story which is the success element for this novel.

When Scientist Ashwin Rathore gets killed instead of his wife Shruti, he hardly knew that she had greater secrets hidden with her. She belonged to the task force which was assigned to protect a weapon which would bring massive destruction, if it had fallen in the wrong hands.

However she herself gets vindicated despite her best attempts to prove her innocence to Col Raguvaran. On the other hand, her boss - Director of IB Raman Vasudevan and Atul Sinha beieved that she was innocent to be pressed with charges of treason despite her association with Junaid Hassan, a person who is known for his contacts with underworld and on top of that, Mahesh Mehta who was under the lens of IB for a while tries calling up Shruti before he gets killed.

Who is behind all these chaos?
What is their motive?
Did Shruti prove her innocence?
Did she do it all alone by herself or did someone help her?

Read this novel which would open up various avenues making you feel real surprised with the twists and turns, it has to offer....

The book is available on Amazon

Book Review - A Turbulent Tale Of Love

Title - A Turbulent Tale Of Love
Author - Shalu Thakur Dhillon
Genre - Fiction(Romance)
Publisher - Invincible Publishers
ISBN - 978-93-87328-77-8

A beautiful romance fiction by the author which is ably supported by the cover pic and most importantly, the title.

Is Love smooth?
Love is full of emotions with ups and downs. It is irrespective of who it is between, even if it is among the known circle.

Nihal, a pilot by profession falls in love with Rabani at first sight. Rabani was initially skeptical sine she thought that Nihal was stalking her but she soon realized it wasn't the case.

Nihal was from a well to do family and so as Rabani. Fortunately, Nihal's bet friend Neil gets engaged to Mannat who was none other than Rabani's Sister but unfortunately Mannat has had a bad image about Nihal since she studied with him.

Nihal on the other hand also had some dark past which kept haunting him and his parents. His mother wanted him to get married to her best friend's daughter.

Did Nihal get to marry Rabani?
What was the dark past he had?
Did the turbulence in his life met with vigor strength?

The story is full of emotions with few twists which would make it an interesting read. Whaat I like the most is the flow which was so smooth and an absolute breeze.

This is a debut novel by the author but when I read it, I could definitely not believe it. I am sure when you finish reading this novel, you will agree with me as well.

The book is available on Amazon

Book Review - Hope and Sunshine

Title - Hope and Sunshine
Author - Debasmita Nath Ghosh
Genre- Fiction
Publisher - Power Publishers
ISBN - 978-93-84334-73-4

A beautiful love story that I have read in the recent days. Author has penned it real well in a great style. I liked the language used for writing this story which was literally flawless and appealing.  It portrayed the life of the protagonist Naina Grover who was stuck between two people - Ved and Aditya.

While Ved and Naina were seeing each other, distance between them proved to be an hindrance. On the other hand, Aditya who was her colleague and also came from an affluent family always tried his best to keep Naina happy.

There were other troubles like caste, status etc., Naina was trying her best on one hand to keep the relationship afloat and Ved has been facing a major issue - ailing mother.

Would they able to unite?

Read this simple yet gripping story which would keep you hooked until the end.

The book is available on Amazon

Book Review - Leader Of Millions

Title - Leader Of Millions
Author - B P Senapati & Durgesh Nandini Das
Genre - Fiction
Publisher - Blackeyes Publication
ISBN - 9789353005313

A story which takes a twist from a student life to a political life. Vijay and Priya studies together. Priya was much brighter when it comes to studies compared to Vijay. Vijay on the other hand was a practical person. They had a group of friends Ishita, Rashmi and the narrator of the story.

The story revolves around these students. Interestingly, Priya and Vijay fall in love with each other which gets the approval of their parents. When things were going well, a major disaster struck in Priya's family. On top of this, there was another incident which leaves a scar in the lives of Vijay and Priya.

Though Vijay was equally brilliant as Priya, he suffers in the interviews, failing to clear them. After the second incident, Vijay asks Priya who is now his wife to pursue IAS and Vijay turns his attention towards Politics.

What did he do entering Politics?
Was he successful?
Did Priya complete her IAS?

Read this story which is not only inspirational but would also give you different dimensions of life which includes love, affection, vengeance, aspiration, goal, achievement among others. I particularly liked the second half of the story which gave lot of ideas on how a model India needs to be...

The book is available on Amazon

Book Review - Baby Care and Child Care

Title - Baby Care and Child Care
Author - Kshama Rao
Genre - Self Help/DIY
Publisher - Blue Rose
ISBN - 978-93-87923-68-3

While giving birth is a second life for a mother, raising the baby is a daunting task especially with the first kid. Those who stay real far away from their parents may not be able to receive their help and advice on time to take care of the baby. The book comes handy to those.

It is easier said than done in upbringing the baby. There are lot of things which needs to be taken into consideration. This includes giving bath, massaging, remedies for itchy nipples and increasing breast milk production to name a few.

While for massaging and bathing, we may hire a servant maid(who is usually old and an expert in this), we cannot rely on them always. When the baby falls sick or affected by cough and cold, you may not know as to what needs to be done. This book helps you as a perfect guide.

Just like the other books, this book is also written in a simple language and is not a lengthy one which makes it an interesting read. 

There are lot of other things which this book addresses that includes:

1. Underweight
2. Stopping thumb sucking habit
3. Sleeping habits
4. Bed wetting
5. Nutrition
6. Potty training
7. Child not talking
8. Physical,Intellectual and Social Skills Development
9. Discipline
10. Leaving baby with a baby sitter.

As you could see, the list is real long and is a must have in every house since each one of us have a kid or planning to have one. Don't we?

The book is available on Amazon

Book Review - Pregnancy Guide

Title - Pregnancy Guide - Home Remedies For Pregnancy
Author - Kshama Rao
Genre - Self Help/DIY
Publisher - MyBooks Publication
ISBN - 978-93-86474-32-2

Pregnancy is the sweetest thing for a Woman who would transform into a Mother. It is the much expected event after marriage. The time taken for this differs from person to person. The book is essentially for those who are already pregnant or planning to get into the next important stage in their life.

While we get to hear lot of information in bits and pieces from various sources, the book is a one stop shop for all the pregnancy needs. Being a mother herself, author has written lot about it which is now available in the form of a book. It starts with the basics where intake of folic acid and what are the other things to be done and what not shouldn't be done. 

The book further spans into 27 more chapters which includes remedies for infertility, best time to conceive, morning sickness, high blood pressure during pregnancy, What to eat and what not to eat during pregnancy, How to deal Stress,hart-burn,Sore Breast, White Discharge, Constipation during pregnancy were explained in great detail.

While it is imperative to follow the guidance given by your gynecologist, this book can surely be used as a reference in case you have forgotten the advice given.

For single mother or those who do not have elders to take care of them would surely find this book real useful since it gives you tips which can be applied before and after pregnancy which also includes signs of labor pain, travel tips for pregnant women and what to eat after delivery.

I found this book real useful.

The book is available on Amazon

Book Review - DIY Cosmetics & Cleaners

Title - DIY Cosmetics & Cleaners
Author - Kshama Rao
Genre - DIY
Publisher - RIGI Publication
ISBN - 978-93-86447-12-8

This book may not only make you become self reliant on various products that you(we) would use it on a day to day basis but could also turn you into a small time entrepreneur. You might have seen various ads asking you to pay a certain sum to learn the aspects/secrets of making products like Shampoo, Soap etc., but here, all you need to do is to buy this book and it would help you learn the manufacturing process of:

1. Shampoo
2. Body lotion
3. Diaper Rash Cream
4. Natural wax for leg hair removal
5. Toothpaste
6. Hand sanitizer
7. Body wach
8. Mosquito repellents
9. Facewash
10. Sunscreen
11. Eyeliner
12. Soap
13. Perfume
14. Deodorizing candles
15. Talcum Powder
16. Cold Cream
17. Liquid Dish Wash Soap
18. Bath Bombs
19. Air Freshners
20. Toilet Bomb Fizzies
21. Vapor Rub
22. Rose Water
23. Eye Cream
24. Nail Polish Remover

Don't you think the list is real long? No one would have taught you all these so far. The process of making all the above aren't rocket science anymore. 

Author has given what ingredients must be used for all these products and at what composition which is the best part and would make your life easier.

The step by step process of making all these products makes it real easy even for an amateur to complete the process with ease. Few products are used across various products mentioned above. When you keep these common products stocked up, you will find it even more easier to make the products at your leisure time.

Needless to say, the products can save lot of money and time. Stop spending on shopping and start saving some money.

The book is available on Amazon

Book Review - Homemade Facials, Masks & Beauty Tips

Title - Homemade Facials, Masks & Beauty Tips
Author - Kshama Rao
Genre - DIY
Publisher - Quills Ink
ISBN - 978-93-86367-16-7

The book is a easy to go one for the women who wants to enhance their beauty without having to spend much on the beauty parlour. While we know that there are lot of things available, how to make the composition work has been clearly explained in this book.

The simplicity of the language along with pics(B&W) makes it more appealing. There are about 25 tips given in this book. Each of them differ from each other and is unique in their own aspect.

An average cost for any of these beauty process in a parlour would cost anywhere between Rs.300 to Rs.3,000 or even higher but here, you can get it done all by yourself in a natural way without having to worry about any side effects.

Skin care is very delicate and due care must be taken. This has been clearly explained in the book, step by step. You have solution for dark eyes, eye wrinkles, facials, hair growth, dandruff, lip balm & lip scrub, whitening the teeth, manicure & pedicure etc has been explained really well.

Try these tips. You will find it really helpful which would not only save money but also time.

The book is available on Amazon