Sunday, 31 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Review: Raja Natwarlal: A mediocre attempt! **½

1141st BLOG POST -->>


RAJA NATWARLAL: 2.5/5


       Before watching Raja Natwarlal, I was discussing with my friend about how Emraan Hashmi, Salman Khan and Akshay Kumar's movies look the same even when they have made more than enough movies for their audience. You switch your TV on, find any of these actors on the screen and you will still be unable to identify which movie it is. All looks the same. On the same context comes the latest flick of Emraan Hashmi- "Raja Natwarlal", a movie that's based on how a con(Emraan Hashmi) tries to trap a billionaire and cricket-freak (Kay Kay Menon)  based in Cape Town, South Africa by selling him a non-existing Cricket team in a League tournament through a fake auction. 
     

            Raja Natwarlal could have been one of the best movies based on con stories but it turns out to be a mediocre attempt. Everything goes well in the first half and you are hooked to see how Emraan will fool Menon but the lack in screenplay makes the whole thing look so predictable that you yourself start feeling about your IQ considering that you already know how the whole thing takes place. There's not a moment when you will jump off your seat in excitement of a surprise element unveiled or a sudden twist. Yes, there are many twists in the film out of which many falls flat because of no element that can impress the audience's expectation.

           Emraan Hashmi acts naturally like he does in every movie of his. Last few failures of his is an intimation that it's time to change his style. Not everyone is Salman Khan to fetch great collection by playing the same character again and again. Humaima Malick got a great hype for her debut in Bollywood through this movie but she is one of the worst parts of this film. Her only job is to dance in the middle of the story, show her cleavage, get kissed and rubbed by Emraan Hashmi, cry when caught by villains and play dumb. Not an impressive debut!

             Key Key Menon and Presh Rawal makes some scene look delightful and better but couldn't do much to save the movie. Locations are wonderful. Also the fast-pace of the movie lets you sit till the end. Songs are forgettable and also the choreography. Background music is as mediocre as the plot of the movie. In short, if you seriously have nothing to do for 2.5 hours in your day, go for this or there's a better option out there- have a good sleep. I am not saying that it's one of the worst movies but it's not more than being a mediocre attempt that would be forgotten as soon as you move out of the cinema hall. I give it 2.5 stars. 


 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Thursday, 28 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Just For You by Rahul Saini (Book Review-3.25*/5)!!!

1140th BLOG POST -->>


      Rahul Saini's new book "Just For You" is out by Penguin Publishers. As the promotion is in full swing, even I got myself attracted towards the book and I am happy that I picked up a very interesting book that discusses what an aspiring author goes through. The specialty of the book is that it not only discusses this but also about what established authors and even the developing ones are going through in the literary industry. Reading this book will change your outlook towards the book-publishing industry. A fictitious version of real scams, you can say. Haha! Kudos to authors for attempting something as gutsy as this.
      
          The book tells how writers play foul against each other. How innocents become victims while the corrupted ones end up winning the race of Bestseller's List. As I have also closely watched the industry from 3-4 years, I could understand exactly what Rahul Saini wanted to speak through this book. This book could have become talk of the town for writers if Rahul would have added "Inspired from true events" on the cover page. Haha! Because I have myself observed a publisher who's quite gay in approach, an author who always writes love stories and a team that organizes award show themselves and feature all their friends and everyone walks away with a trophy. :-)

         Coming to the writing style, Rahul Saini has provided an insight into his own industry very cleverly with usage of right words and phrases. You can sense how big and real things are spoken gently so that it doesn't offend someone directly and even the truth is spoken. Many characters could have jumbled the tale but the way author have set graph for each of them states their version of story perfectly. Writing as a first person for several characters in a book is very challenging but author has done a phenomenal job. Although characters are based in same working environment, the power of characterization and uniqueness gives distinctness and face value to each one of the characters and thus, all seems to be protagonist after a point of time. The bit of love story plays its part well. Several emotions displayed are also realistic and touchy. In all, the nature that the author has created with this book towards world, relations, dreams, emotions and competitions is applaudable. 

 The first half of the book isn't very fast and hence you find it very unconvincing to read but as soon as Nisha leaves Rohit, story accelerates and many events that takes place between authors excites you to know what happened and how did your favorite character manage to survive. Karun's character is wonderfully portrayed. I also liked the way climax is handled because it could not have been easy considering the way narration progressed with display of each character's proceedings. I also liked a particular scene of a book fest because I have found many a times that authors try to pull down their competitor by counter-attacking them and getting personal. (I call it the famous Number Page 177.)This book is certainly a fine attempt by Rahul Saini. Overall the book is readable and light in words and length which makes it easy to read. I give it 3.25*/5. 



 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Monday, 25 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Kingdom Come by Aarti V Raman (Book Review: 3.75*/5)!!!

1139th BLOG POST -->>


    "Kingdom Come"- Isn't it an unusual title for a book? When I heard it first, I was sure that this book can be skipped but the good reviews made me go for it and thus, I picked up Aarti V Raman's Kingdom Come which is published by Harlequin publication. The book is 310+ pages and thus, you enjoy a ride that takes quite long to end. It's smooth but gets bumpy at times. The best part about the authoress is her command over the language and the way she explains the philosophies of the contemporary scenario between the characters at every specific points. Also her narration is good and the characterization is done very well which ensures that you get attached with almost everyone- Right from Krivi, Ziya, Noor, Sam to Woodpecker and Tom. That's the magnificence of each character.
     

            Cover page and synopsis promises some great action and thriller in the story which authoress delivers every now and then. Book even starts with a scene where Krivi Iyer is diffusing a bomb. Another commendable part is Aarti's research behind the lives of the people in army, terrorist groups and the way bombs, arms and ammunition are dealt with. The jargon that she has used many times regarding gadgets, machinery, bombs etc shows the kind of knowledge she ensured in herself before scripting this manuscript. 

     
     Well, out of everything, the best part has been The Woodpecker. I have read many books where a villain is introduced in a latter half and not given the kind of importance he/she deserves to make the hero of the book more macho. Author has definitely won brownie points here. She has discussed Woodpecker as stronger and better than Krivi and his whole team many a times. Even in the pre-climax, it is narrated as if The Woodpecker is a step ahead of Krivi and company. If for one point, I would ask you pick this book up, it would be to read about the villain here. I also feel that the title of this book should have been "The Woodpecker". Yes!


           Coming to the drawbacks:- I found it hard in getting into the story initially as author tries to introduce us with too many things and hence we don't get attached with any character except Noor's. It's only after some time that the book becomes alive and active. Also, I found too many love-making sequences every now and then once Krivi and Ziya patches up. It slows down the story and also adds up to your irritation. Book could have been 50 pages thinner easily. Too much time has been given in discussing of how Krivi and Ziya are confused with each other because of the same problem again and again. Also, few scenes where the narration could have been more exciting and thrilling, author has kept it flat as if just another scene. Else, I must say a good book indeed. Definitely, one-time read. I give it 3.75*/5. 


 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Sunday, 24 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Review: Mardaani: It'll not let you blink!!!

1138th BLOG POST -->>


MARDAANI: 3.5/5


       Last week, Singham Returns entertained me a lot which was based on a Policeman named Singham. This week, Mardaani is released which again is a story of a female crime-branch officer played by Rani Mukherjee. Rani has lost her audience since 3 years and any movie featuring her is tend to be ignored. Still, Mardaani has got a certain hype which might make audience go to theaters and enjoy a movie which is said to be the female version of Singham. I am done watching the movie and I am very glad that I liked Rani Mukherjee right from the first shot till the end. She acts so naturally that you get deep into her character and want her to win at the end. She does not overact while beating, thrashing, abusing, delivering dialogues, uttering slang, firing bullets and running behind villains. She makes the character look real and hence, the delight to watch Mardaani proves to be right.
   

          Film shows how a young boy manages a whole organization which is involved in kidnapping girls and selling it to men who are desperate to have sex. Tahir Bhasin as villain tries to look cool by speaking English, calling Rani as ma'am even when he hates her, keeping a calm body-language and trying to use his brain to face Shivani Shivaji Roy(Rani Mukherjee). He is a fine actor but does not leave too much impact of him through this movie. All the other supporting casts does well but it's Rani Mukherjee, herself, who carries whole film on her shoulders.

           Pradeep Sarkaar is one of the prominent film makers who try to make movies based on women. Mardaani is definitely one of his works that shall be remembered for pointing out a much-needed topic of girl trafficking and abduction. He makes the movie look real without making any scene look over-the-top. He does not make even Rani to showcase extreme action scenes. The best part of his direction has been the whole focus only at the main plot. He didn't add an useless item song, a half-baked love story or a big flashback of villain's life. He just talked about one case throughout the movie and how a lady officer tries to win against a group of big criminals. The sense of humour that Rani comes with shows how Sarkaar has worked towards making her character interesting. In all, Mardaani is a winning film. Definitely, a one-time watch. I give it 3.5.


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 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!

           
Wednesday, 20 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Are you too right to be a human?

1137th BLOG POST -->>

       
  What happens when you become a character that is thoroughly under scrutiny and target? And why does that happen purposely with you? I have found that people who are high on morale and values, the ones who are having principles and love to stay by it are the ones who are proven wrong every now and then. It's not because they are wrong in every case, it's just because their righteousness becomes usual while any mistake they do becomes a highlight of their personality. Should such people lose their characters when they find that people around them are blaming them for small mistakes they did? No. They should understand that people like them are very less and hence, even your closest pals would like to drag you down up to their level which actually is, no level.

           I, myself, try to stay on my grounds but there are times when people accuse me of changing my views and stands conditionally. I don't believe it. I know that I am maturing every second, every minute and every hour against my friends who might be developing the same in a week or month. I read a lot and I love watching great interviews on Youtube and television. I get to learn new views and the ways to handle the same thing. My attitude today may be something else while dealing a problem. But if I see an interview of an entrepreneur/manager tonight, tomorrow I would deal it in a better way as that person would have taught. And I will see better results coming my way. In such scenarios, people start blaming that I am changed and still I ask my friends to follow what I do because it is what the better and successful people teach us. Damn! They would never understand the whole purpose of principles, values and morale.

           Today, Bal Thackeray isn't with us anymore. He has been one of the controversial figures of our time. But he is still respected because he lived life according to his terms and never let anyone else define his views and ideology. Why? Because somewhere he felt that what he is doing for his community can be done only in that way. All of us do criticize him but ask Marathi manoos, they still remember him for the person he was. Since, he have gone, they feel that they have lost a face that fought for them even when there are many Marathi leaders who promise of living for them. Why is he still being remembered? Because he was the one who didn't change himself by what his friends, media, newspapers, public, family etc suggested. He did what he knew was right and never worried if people said that Bal Thackeray's stand on the same issue have changed. That was him- Samrat!

             You should be strict with yourselves and if you find that you are always being correct with your expectations and specially, what is universally and morally right, you shouldn't fear anyone. Be the same with people around you if you find that they aren't the same according to your current ideology. But before this, you should be yourself sure that you are better manager/person than them. You should be assured that you are doing what the great leaders/people have taught and are teaching. And then you shouldn't worry about what your friends/colleagues think about you. If not today, they will surely understand what you were trying to deliver when they become as fledged as you. When my friends/readers see The Anupam Kher Show, they tell me that I have been saying the same thing since 5 years what those successful actors are speaking on the channel. What I speak is never my ideologies, it's what I learn from the words/actions/gestures of these great souls. 

           Hence, if you feel that you are right and you are doing exactly what people did to get successful, carry on with your ideas. People might leave you in this journey. People might blame you of being arrogant and selfish. People will also say that you live life just for you and you won't even offer water to the one who's dying of thirst. But if you know that from last 5 years, you have been telling the person to save water as one day scarcity of water would be there and still the person went on wasting the water supplied to him while you were substantially saving yours, you are totally right on morale grounds if you leave him dying. On humanitarian ground, you may be wrong and you shall always be blamed for that. But don't concentrate. Because the one who died was also wrong on the same grounds as he wasted water which could have been given to those in villages who get no water at all. So, stay by your ideology no matter what. :-)

 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Monday, 18 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Zara Tasveer se tu.. Nikal ke saamne aa...

1136th BLOG POST -->>

   
       Whenever we are about to meet someone new, we become very conscious. Sometimes, even when we are not meeting someone very important, still we end up waking all night thinking how the day is going to be. What's the reason behind it? What exactly goes in our mind that we lose our slumber and we keep on thinking how are we going to carry ourselves tomorrow? It's a worry of building our image and creating a very good first impression so that the person gets excited about meeting us yet again. Image building is a wonderful art that only few knows how to do. Rest of us are trying to imitate those personalities and hence losing ourselves in the process. I have found many people who said that because they tried to project themselves as a better person, later on they lost the person in front of whom they felt they were succeeding with their projection. Surprising, isn't it?

            Why is it that we think to impress a new person when we already have uncountable friends and they even like us? It's just because we are trying to test ourselves. After a time, we know that our friends might not speak truth about our personality and even if they don't like us, they will continue appreciating out of love and liking. That is why when we are meeting a stranger, we think of checking if we are able to impress the person. Somewhere all of us have an inferiority complex because what we think in our mind is what only we know about our thoughts. We know how degrading thoughts get processed sometimes in our mind and if discussed with others, we would be hated for what we are. Hence, we get influenced by few people whom we respect for the way they carry themselves.

            Hence, we never let the person with us know who we are. We hide ourselves behind the new gestures, accent and ideologies that we have adopted of the persons we admire. We feel that the new person will like us in this new avatar and he would love meeting us yet again. This might come true and the person might become a fan of yours. But for how long can you fake yourself? There is validity of almost everything in this world.

           After few more meetings, the person identifies that there are few things that you are revealing every time you feel that the person isn't looking/concentrating at you. And that's when he/she identifies that you aren't the same person they met for the first time. And from here, disliking begins and it comes to a day when the person does not want to even discuss you. It's just because your true self comes in light. Does this means your true self isn't impressive and likable?  It is. Just because you entered with some different avatar that was more likable than you, now when you are becoming less likable for the person, they are wanting to leave you. 

           Image-building isn't a process of one day that people generally thinks. It's a long process that goes on till the last day of relationship. If you think that a successful acting on the first day will ensure a long relationship, it isn't. If you think just because you romantically dated your partner in the first meeting, the relationship shall continue forever, break-up is very near, my friend. You will have to keep enriching your image rather than trying to project yourself as a totally different personality initially and then coming back to your middle-class-ness. Be what you really are and then with the passing time, make sure that you are developing your image so that the person keeps getting in love out of respect with you. And that's how you will build an image that would be talked of even when you are not present among the people. :-)

 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!

Cafe Latte by Amit Shankar (Book Review:3.75*/5)!!!

1135th BLOG POST -->>


     I haven't read the 1st book of Amit Shankar but I was surprised to find another author with a big potential after reading Chapter 11 and Love is Vodka. Chapter 11 was a hilarious book which made me laugh and entertained throughout. Love is Vodka was quite sensuous but it was a fine attempt considering the genre in which it was written. Amit Shankar has just come out with his 4th book that's an anthology named "Cafe Latte". The 190-pages anthology is out by his home publisher- Vitasta and the cover page of the book promises "eighteen unusual short stories". These days, many small publishers are coming out with their respective anthologies back-to-back and hence, when I came to know that Amit Shankar has done the same, I was quite doubtful because reading short love stories aren't something new for Bloggers like me. But as the book promises, I really got to read some unusual tales and happily, there wasn't a single love story. Yes. Do you get it, new and small publishers? This is what an anthology is. Not the shit you are publishing these days.
       

          Every story begins as if it's just another tale but as soon as the half of it ends, you realize that the end is not going to be predictable. By the time you reach the end, you find your mouth open in surprise and shock. This anthology is been attempted seriously without any casual approach. Every story is written in a way that might want you to read more such stories which can leave you with lots of questions, thoughts and interpretations. The kind of messages and outlook these story provides, it assures that you aren't having the same opinion about the discussed topic anymore. It gives you an insight that you could have never known if not read these stories or faced those situations yourself which is quite unlikely to happen.

          Temple of the King, the 1st story itself makes you sad knowing what happened to one of the protagonists. Even the last story with which the book is ended is upon an unusual happenings between a publisher and writer. The book consists story of emotions of a boy who's father owns a lingerie shop, a girl who confesses to a Father before committing suicide, a child beggar who sells a rose daily to a schoolboy of the same age, a jazz player who feels he has no existence etc. All the protagonists are such about whom we don't think much as they aren't given much damn because of their own sad lives or presence. But Amit Shankar, though his stories, gives those characters a presence that makes you think time and again how problematic life can be and how wonderful our lives are.

 
        Coming to the author, I would say that Amit Shankar has once again impressed me with his writing and the kind of stories he selected for this anthology which is surely one of the bests I have read. But I would suggest him to continue with the full-fledged novels that he writes because I didn't feel the same excitement in this book when compared to my happiness and reviews after I finished reading 2 of his novels. It would be fine publishing one Cafe Latte kind of a book after every 3 full-fledged novel but continuing with anthologies and short stories won't be a good idea for a wonderful talent like him. He has an amazing story-telling skill that he shouldn't limit with anthologies. I give this attempt 3.75*/5 considering it to be a bizarre sort of anthology. :-)



 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Sunday, 17 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

I too had a dream by Verghese Kurien (Book Review-4.75*/5)!!!

1134th BLOG POST -->>


       In 2012, when Verghese Kurien expired, I came to know that he's the one who made Amul a success story and Operation Flood possible. I wanted to read more about him as the newspapers didn't provide every information I was dying to know. I checked it on Flipkart and found that he has an autobiography by the name "I too had a dream". It's been scribbled by Gouri Salvi as Verghese Kurien was too old to indulge himself in writing a book. However, I didn't get chance to pick this book from last 2 years and finally, as I am done reading it, I am regretting my decision of delaying it till now. The 250-pages book is published by Roli Books, a publisher I respect immensely. The kind of books they publish tells their intention. They are wanting to change the minds of people by spreading great stories, usually non-fictions.
   

           I was sure that Verghese Kurien would have discussed how he sacrificed friendships, slumber, movies and worked single-handed-ly to make Amul a success story. But I was surprised when I found that he didn't discuss his personal life as such and only focused the book towards milk industry and how he contributed into it. The book teaches us a very different orientation towards leadership, management and power. Verghere Kurien was surely a man of his principles and therefore he never got scared by anyone and even in his autobiography, he has taken names without any fear which makes it more interesting to read. 

             The kind of motivation, confidence and learning this book has provided, I remember only one book that can be added in the same league- A.P.J Abdul Kalam's Wings of Fire. The amount of work Verghese Kurien has done for farmers, animals, milk production and our country is worth commendable. He discusses even the controversies and criticisms(on him) by ministers/competitors openly which shows that he has no intentions of hiding even his shortcomings. He also discusses at one point of time that he was a bit of autocratic too. Last few pages of the books are very emotional as Verghese Kurien starts giving his final takes on few things and you realize that he's leaving us in few pages. He clearly expresses the amount of respect he has for his seniors and the people who allowed him to work his way. Reading the moments of Tribhuvandas Patel's death in the end made me weep. A very motivational book and only one of its kind. I give it 4.75*/5.


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 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Saturday, 16 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Review: Singham Returns: A perfect Sequel indeed! ****/5

1133rd BLOG POST -->>


SINGHAM RETURNS: 4/5

    3 years ago, I watched Singham in multiplex with my college friends. That was my first experience when I saw multiplex audience whistling and clapping. I am just back after watching Singham Returns in a single screen theater at Navi Mumbai. Due to long queues and mind-blowing advance booking, I didn't get a single seat out of 3 theaters on Friday in my town. And the buzz is that Friday collection is 30 crore+. This is happening when the movie isn't promoted well, none of the songs have created buzz and no extreme PR activities has been felt. This tells how valuable and favorite Singham, Rohit Shetty and Ajay Devgn's combo brand is. This was again a wonderful experience watching people shouting, whistling and celebrating the wonderful dialogues and an angry policeman's fight against corruption and crimes. 
       

            Singham Returns can surely be said as an upgradation to its first part. While watching it, I didn't remember Singham even for a single moment. I was happy to find that Rohit Shetty has lived up to the expectations and made a movie after which its first part can be easily forgotten. And this was a big challenge to live up to; as we have seen how Arbaaz Khan spoiled Dabangg with its sequel. After the movie ended, I wished to see its 3rd part soon. That's what the director and story-teller, Rohit Shetty has done with his latest flick. He gave SRK his biggest hit in terms of collection with his last directorial venture- Chennai Express, now its time for him to repeat the same for Ajay Devgn with Singham Returns. 

             Ajay Devgn has played his part wonderfully. It's an honour for our generation to have an angry young man in the form of Ajay Devgn with us. He speaks less but still makes sure that his audience is connected with him. Aata Majhi Satakli and Aali re Aali aata tujhi baari aali still makes you shout your lungs out. That's the power of Ajay Devgn and his dialogue delivery. It's extremely hard to replace Prakash Raj in Singham but Amol Gupte plays his part wonderfully and makes sure that you are hating him but still laughing on his funny dialogues and interpretations. Zakir Hussain, Sameer Dharmadhikari, Anupam Kher, Dayanand and all the other supporting casts also contributes well. Kareena Kapoor is entertaining and her last dialogue makes the theater roar loud. 

            The action scenes are perfectly done and looks wonderful on screen. As the movie is shot in Mumbai, the city is shown beautifully and aesthetically on the screen. Rohit Shetty still manages to make us believe that cars can fly and blow away in fire with just a bullet of Singham's gun. The plot isn't very heavy which makes it easy for audience to enjoy movie without using their brains. The love angle between Ajay Devgn and Kareena Kapoor distracts you but thankfully, they do not waste much of your time and Singham keeps going back to his work before the audiences start missing the Singham effect. In all, Rohit Shetty entertains you by using Ajav Devgn's acting, Kareena Kapoor's beauty and Amol Gupte's talent. I give the movie 4 out of 5 because I got thoroughly entertained and enjoyed this more than it's first part.


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 ABHILASH SINGHAM.. ooops.. RUHELA!!!
Tuesday, 12 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Private India by Ashwin Sanghi and James Patterson (Book Review: 4.5*/5)!!!

1132nd BLOG POST -->>



         A reader feels immense pride in reading novel of the country's best authors or his favorite ones. Talking about my country, there are four authors who stand out tall against others- Chetan Bhagat-Amish Tripathi-Ravi Subramanian-Ashwin Sanghi. The 2nd half of this year is exciting as 3 of the 4 authors mentioned above are releasing their latest book. Ashwin Sanghi has recently come up with "Private India", Ravi Subramanian is coming next month with "God is a Gamer" and Chetan Bhagat is coming in October with the most awaited book this year "Half Girlfriend". Truly an orgasmic height from a point of view of reader for me. Haha! I am just done reading Private India which is written by Ashwin Sanghi in association with James Patterson. This is his thickest book till date- 470 PAGES. 
 

          Ashwin Sanghi assures that with his book you will be gifted with an amazing thriller which will not let you think about anything else than the story. His last book- The Krishna Key has been my only experience as a reader where I witnessed his craft and it kept me glued to it for one whole day. Private India has just overtaken the power and brilliance The Krishna Key possesses. This shows that as an author and storyteller, Ashwin Sanghi has improved tremendously. Private India is written in small chapters which makes it easy for you to understand the story and not run in the flow of it. Every small scenario is written in a way that it gets its due and does not end up being unnoticed. 

           Ashwin Sanghi hasn't used big words to impress literati hence it becomes easy to go with the story without referring dictionary and skipping pages. Big fonts assures too many pages and with too many pages comes an impatient feeling of turning yet another page to find what happened next. The way suspense has been held throughout the book is commendable and it's hard for you to guess who is the serial killer. The characters are very well-built that even after more than dozens of people mentioned, you don't get confused with the names and profession. Santosh and Rupesh are best as protagonists and are expressed very well. Also, Nisha and Hari are interesting characters along with Mubeen.

          The story line isn't much confusing. The plot is simple but the twists, turns, suspense, thriller and excitement attached with it plays its part. Even when the book is 470 pages, I don't find a single page which is unwanted. Every word had an effect on the story and that's what Ashwin Sanghi along with James Patterson does with us. Doesn't allow us to sleep. I completed this book in just 2 evening and it has been a wonderful experience as a reader. If you are thriller fan, this one is surely for you and if you are Sanghi's fan, just go for it- You will be mind blown and won't stop applauding the author for unlocking the new level of excitement. I give this book an amazing 4.5*/5.


 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Sunday, 10 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Review: Entertainment: A treat for Akshay Kumar's fans! **½

1131st BLOG POST -->>


ENTERTAINMENT: 2.5/5

   
      On Sunday Morning, I am done watching Akshay Kumar’s latest comedy- Entertainment that’s based on his character’s relation with dog named “Entertainment”. The movie also stars Tamannah, Krishna, Mithun C, Johnny L, Prakash Raj and Sonu Sood. If I have to say in few sentences how this movie is, I would say that it takes you back in 2008 when Akshay Kumar released 5 comedies back to back and all of them turned out to be Super-Hits. People loved those kind of movies 6 years back but now they are being criticized for being no-brainer and senseless. If you have been an Akshay Kumar fan and still like watching Welcome, Singh is King and Heyy Babyy, you can surely book your tickets and have your Entertainment.

            I have been a critic of Akshay Kumar from a long time as I feel that he could do better movies being a versatile actor he is. But he has stereotyped himself as an actor doing senseless comedies. But few movies of his have surely surprised me. E.g. Special 26, Holiday. Entertainment is surely not among them but before watching the movie, I was expecting stupidity, nonsensical and unfunny jokes but I found the movie better than my expectations. Though the story line is very simple but as a comedy movie, Entertainment is treated very well. There are few moments that do make you fall off your seat. Comparing this one with Humshakals, I would say, a wonderful comedy after a long time but that does not mean it gets into the league of Munnabhai series and 3 Idiots. It has its own kind which few might enjoy and few might dislike.
   
           Director has done a wonderful job and never does it look as if the movie is made in hurry. Dialogues aren’t that good but they do not irritate you as well. It is wonderful that directors didn’t try to hide their simple storyline with too many songs and dances in between of the story. There are just 3 songs in the movie out of which one comes during the end credits. Krishna assures that he makes you laugh unlike Sudesh Lehri who bored us tremendously in Ready. Tamannah does not have even 10 minutes role so it’s useless talking about her. Mithun Da and Johnny Lever play their part best. In all, I would say a movie based on animal’s love is treated well without insulting the breed or human every now and then. And go only if you are still in love with those movies of Akshay Kumar I talked above. Otherwise, it is just another Humshakals for you.

 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Friday, 8 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Meditation by Eknath Easwaran (Book Review-3.5*/5)!!!

1130th BLOG POST -->>




            It's long since I was searching for a book that could teach me how to start with meditation and what benefits will I experience after indulging myself in meditation. Every time I searched for a book, I always felt that Eknath Easwaran's Meditation published by Jaico is a better choice. And as I am done reading now, I can say that my intuition and choice has been wonderful. It has been amazing getting to know Meditation and it's advantages in the easy words of Eknath Easwaran. Book also comes with a tag line "Bringing the deep wisdom of the heart into your daily life". The 218-pages book is a wonderful experience. While reading itself, I was feeling as if I am in meditation. That's how the book has been written.

           I liked the way author has tried to make things easy for readers. He hasn't used words that are new for us. He has used simple words that we are familiar with to make us understand how powerful meditation is and how it can transform our whole personality. He has also not over-hyped meditation to make it look obvious and boring but he talks about it as casually as we discuss it. How to chose mantram and how to continue with it whenever we get free time is wonderfully explained. Similarly, which passage to chose for meditation and how to read it is also an amazing explanation by Eknath Easwaran. Similarly, he discusses everything- reading habits, eating habits, living habits etc.

            He has talked about meditation as spirituality and not as passion. Authors generally talk about meditation as if its the only thing left for us to do in life rather than earning, living and celebrating. Author has not tried to influence us in any manner. He assures that we find it interesting whenever we read any chapter and don't find it scary as if someone is saying no-meditation-no-survival or we are asked to meditate on gunpoint. This liberty that's been given to us as a reader is what makes this book one of the recommended if you want to know about meditation.


 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Tuesday, 5 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Sad Friendship Day! That's how I wish people :-)

1129th BLOG POST -->>

       
    And the Friendship Week is on. Testosterone levels are high of every young sample walking, sitting, talking, sleeping, chatting around me. People are getting messages scribbled on their T shirts from their friends to keep it as memory for life. Others are tying Friendship Band to each other and letting the person know how much they consider him/her in life. I have also seen people give away Greeting cards and chocolates. Some friends in groups are cutting a cake which has names of each of them on it. And just now I saw someone update his cover photo which is clicked at a beach with almost 35 friends in it. I am surprised to see that 35 people got together to celebrate Friendship Day at a beach. Amazing! World is seriously jobless, isn't it? :-)

           Friendship is a relationship that every person handles in their own way. You can not ask me to be friends with someone you share a good relationship just because you get along with that person quite nicely. A friend of mine may be very interesting and funny to me but for you, he may be one of the very boring people you ever met. Friendship, hence, can not be defined with specified universal rules. Everyone have their own rules when they make friends. I am astonished to see my generation involving all their life time on friends as if they are the ones who are going to feed them till death. In our parent's generation, it was said that 80% amount of money is spent in religion. For our generation, it can be undoubtedly said that 80% amount of money is spent on Friendship. The way religion gives nothing, Friendship is more evil as it only takes away something from our life.

          There can be 3-4 very good friends who would have done something which must have brought a big positive change in your life; considering them as your friends looks justified. But calling 10-20 people and in the above case, 35 your friends and wasting money and time with them is one of the stupidities that you shall regret once your 20s and 30s will pass away. This is the time that should be devoted on yourself and your targets, goals and objectives but people are so busy in spending time with their friends that they are not realizing an important part of their life is passing away in front of their eyes. And when you question them, they say,"Arre yaar kuch hi mahine toh baaki hai fir ye dost kahaan milenge." Yes, ye waale nahi milenge lekin chutiyon, naye waale bhi toh banenge. 

           When you have such a passion for Friendship, you will surely make new friends at job and the new city you would be shifting to. But all of you have closed your mind whenever such topic is been touched as you can't imagine sitting at home and working on something very important for you. The visuals that you get are of getting selfies with your friends, going to trips to as many places as possible, watching movies and spending whole evening with these temporary friends. And if you are about to challenge me that these aren't temporary friends, just remember how many of those school friends are still with you? 1 or 2, right? From the current phase too, only 1 or 2 will stay with you for ever, so please stop considering everyone you are sitting with in classroom/office as your friends and start focusing on your family, studies, job, career, savings, money, investments, development, family business etc. PLEASE! FRIENDSHIP is BULLSHIT! And also FRIENDSHIP DAY is. Understand that before you are left alone and all friends with whom you have uncountable selfies moves ahead in life. 

 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!

Chetan Bhagat's 6th Fiction Book- "Half Girlfriend"! This October!

1128th BLOG POST -->>



         
Chetan Bhagat needs no introduction. Out of his first 5 fiction books, first 4 has already been adapted into movies while the 5th one is in process. His only one non-fiction book "What Young India Wants" remained at No.1 in Bestseller's list for almost an year. Now it's time to talk about his 6th fiction book that will be released in mid-October 2014. 

        Chetan Bhagat have revealed the name of the book- "HALF GIRLFRIEND". Like always, there's a number in the title. This time, it's "Half". Chetan Bhagat always names his male protagonist with something that is related to Lord Krishna. This time his character is "Madhav", again a name of Lord Krishna. The plot says that a Bihari boy named Madhav falls in love with a girl. Madhav can't speak English properly while the girl is good at it. Madhav wants relationship but the girl doesn't. Girl wants to be just a friend with him but Madhav doesn't. At last, the girl compromises and agrees to be his half girlfriend. 

        By the plot, it's evident that story isn't something unique that we were expecting as Chetan is releasing a book after 3 years. But he can make it terrific with his funny one-liners and amazing observations about girls and boys. That's what his USP is. His last book Revolution 2020 wasn't liked much hence the hope with this one is too high. But still, on the first day itself, Revolution 2020 sold 5 lakh copies and by the 100th day of the release, it sold 1 million copies. FLipkart had to hire 700 boys to deliver the pre-order copies. Now that's the challenge Chetan will have to face. This is a big record to break and industry has changed a lot since then. People aren't much interested in such kind of books and even Chetan Bhagat has gained many haters. Let's see what happens.

           
While other authors catch bloggers like me to promote and market their books through reviews or advertisements, Chetan Bhagat releases the cover page of his new book by advertising on the first full page of The Times of India. Also, the pre-ordering of the book starts on Flipkart at Rs. 149 which is higher than prices of all his previous books. The ad also says that even after the book will officially release, it shall be available only on Flipkart for next 1 month. A big blow to bookstores. Chetan Bhagat is known for revolutionizing promotion and marketing of books through bookstores in every corner of India with his Five Point Someone. But after 10 years, it seems as if physical bookstores does not interests the author anymore. 


           Well, there is still 2.5 months left for the release of the book. Let's see what more tactics The Author plays to make this book a popular interest among youths and readers. He got along Vidya Balan for the launch of 2 States and Sonam Kapoor for Revolution 2020. Let's see which Bollywood actress he brings this time. My guess- Alia Bhatt or Jacqueline Fernandez it would be. :-) Let's wait and watch!

Pre-order the book here -->>



Sharing the first chapter of Half Girlfriend.



Prologue

------------




‘They are your journals, you read them,’ I said to him.

He shook his head.

‘Listen, I don’t have the time or patience for this,’ I said, getting irritated. Being a writer on a book tour doesn’t allow for much sleep—I had not slept more than four hours a night for a week. I checked my watch. ‘It’s midnight. I gave you my view. It’s time for me to sleep now.’

‘I want you to read them,’ he said.

We were in my room at the Chanakya Hotel, Patna. This morning, he had tried to stop me on my way out. Then he had waited for me all day; I had returned late at night to find him sitting in the hotel lobby.

‘Just give me five minutes, sir,’ he had said, following me into the lift. And now here we were in my room as he pulled out three tattered notebooks from his backpack.

The spine of the books came apart as he plonked them on the table. The yellowing pages fanned out between us. The pages had handwritten text, mostly illegible, as the ink had smudged. Many pages had holes in them, rats having snacked on them.

An aspiring writer, I thought.

‘If this is a manuscript, please submit it to a publisher. However, do not send it in this state,’ I said.

‘I am not a writer. This is not a book.’
‘It’s not?’ I said, lightly touching a crumbling page. I looked up at him. Even seated, he was tall. Over six feet, he had a sunburnt, outdoor ruggedness about him. Black hair, black eyes and a particularly intense gaze. He wore a shirt two sizes too big for his lean frame. He had large hands. He reassembled the notebooks, gentle with his fingers, almost caressing the pages.
‘What are these books?’ I said.

‘I had a friend. These are her journals,’ he said.

‘Her journals. Ah! A girlfriend?’

‘Half-girlfriend.’

‘What?’

He shrugged.

‘Listen, have you eaten anything all day?’ I said.

He shook his head. I looked around. A bowl of fruit and some chocolates sat next to my bed. He took a piece of dark chocolate when I offered it.

‘So what do you want from me?’ I said.

‘I want you to read these journals, whatever is readable...because I can’t.’

I looked at him, surprised.

‘You can’t read? As in, you can’t read in general? Or you can’t read these?’

‘These.’

‘Why not?’ I said, reaching for a chocolate.

‘Because Riya’s dead.’

My hand froze in mid-air. You cannot pick up a chocolate when someone has just mentioned a death.

‘Did you just say the girl who wrote these journals is dead?’

He nodded. I took a few deep breaths and wondered what to say next.

‘Why are they in such a terrible shape?’ I said after a pause.

‘They are old. Her ex-landlord found them after years.’

‘Sorry, Mr Whats-your-name. Can I order some food first?’ I picked up the phone in the room and ordered two club sandwiches from the limited midnight menu.

‘I’m Madhav. Madhav Jha. I live in Dumraon, eighty kilometres from here.’

‘What do you do?’

‘I run a school there.’

‘Oh, that’s...’ I paused, searching for the right word.

‘…noble? Not really. It’s my mother’s school.’

‘I was going to say that’s unusual. You speak English. Not typical of someone who runs a school in the back of beyond.’

‘My English is still bad. I have a Bihari accent,’ he said without a trace of self-consciousness.

‘French people have a French accent when they speak English.’
‘My English wasn’t even English until…’ he trailed off and fell silent. I saw him swallow to keep his composure.

‘Until?’

He absently caressed the notebooks on the desk.

‘Nothing. Actually, I went to St. Stephen’s.’

‘In Delhi?’

‘Yes. English types call it Steven’s.’

I smiled. ‘And you are not one of the English types?’

‘Not at all.’

The doorbell startled us. The waiter shifted the journals to keep the sandwich tray on the table. A few sheets of the journal fell to the floor.

‘Careful!’ Madhav shouted as if the waiter had broken an antique crystal.

The waiter apologized and scooted out of the room.

I offered him a tomato and cheese sandwich. He ignored me and rearranged the loose sheets of paper.

‘Are you okay? Please eat this.’

He nodded, his eyes still on the pages of the journal. I decided to eat since my imposed guest didn’t seem to care about my hospitality.

‘These journals obviously mean a lot to you. But why have you brought them here?’
‘For you to read. Maybe they will be useful to you.’

‘How will they be useful to me?’ I said, my voice firmer with the food inside me. A part of me wanted him out of my room as soon as possible.

‘She used to like your books. We used to read them together,’ he said in a soft voice. ‘For me to learn English.’

‘Madhav,’ I said, as calmly as possible. ‘This seems like a sensitive matter. I don’t want to get involved. Okay?’

His gaze remained directed at the floor. ‘I don’t want the journals either,’ he said after a while.

‘That is for you to decide.’

‘It’s too painful for me,’ he said.

‘I can imagine.’

He stood up, presumably to leave. He had not touched his sandwich—which was okay, because I could eat it after he left.

‘Thank you for your time. Sorry to disturb you.’

‘It’s okay,’ I said.

He scribbled his phone number on a piece of paper and kept it on the table. ‘If you are ever in Dumraon and need anything, let me know. It’s unlikely you will ever come, but still.’ He stood up, instantly dwarfing me, and walked to the door.

‘Madhav,’ I called out after him. ‘You forgot the journals. Please take them with you.’

‘I told you I don’t need them.’

‘So why are you leaving them here?’

‘Because I can’t throw them. You can.’ Before I could answer, he stepped out, shut the door and left. It took me a few seconds to realize what had happened.

I picked up the journals and ran out of the room, but the sole working lift had just gone down. I couldn’t have taken the stairs and caught him in time; after a long day, I didn’t have the energy to do that either.

I came back to my room, irritated by his audacity. Dumping the notebooks and the slip with his phone number in the dustbin, I sat on the bed, a little unsettled.

I can’t let someone I just met get the better of me, I thought, shaking my head. I switched off the lights and lay down in bed. I had to catch an early morning flight to Mumbai the next day and had a four-hour window of sleep. I couldn’t wait to reach home.

However, I couldn’t stop thinking about my encounter with the mysterious Madhav. Who was this guy? Dumraon, Stephen’s and Delhi in my head. Questions popped up: What the hell is a half-girlfriend? Who was this guy? And why do I have a dead girl’s journals in my room?
Eyes wide open, I lay in bed, staring at the little flashing red light from the smoke detector on the ceiling.

The journals bothered me. Sure, they lay in the dustbin. However, something about those torn pages, the dead person and her half-boyfriend, or whoever he was, intrigued me. Don’t go there,’ my mind screamed down its own suggestion. The suggestion: read just one page.

‘Don’t even think about it,’ I said. But thirty minutes later, I switched on the lights in my room, fished out the journals from the dustbin and opened the first volume. Most pages were too damaged to read. I tried to make sense of what I could. The first page dated back nine years, to 1st November 2002.

Riya had written about her fifteenth birthday in Delhi. ‘One more page,’ I told myself. I flipped through the sheets as I tried to find another readable page. I read one more section, and then another. Three hours later, I had read whatever could be read in the entire set.

The room phone rang at 5 a.m., startling me.

‘Your wake-up call, sir,’ the hotel operator said.
‘I am awake, thank you,’ I said, as I’d never slept at all. I called Jet Airways.
‘I’d like to cancel a ticket on the Patna-Mumbai flight this morning.’
Pulling out the slip of paper with Madhav’s number from the dustbin, I texted him: ‘We need to talk. Important.’

At 6.30 a.m., the tall, lanky man was in my room once more.

‘Make tea for both of us. The kettle is above the minibar.’

He followed my instructions. The early morning sun highlighted his sharp features. He handed me a cup of tea and took a seat diagonally opposite me on the double-bed.

‘Should I speak first, or will you?’ I said.

‘About?’

‘Riya.’

He sighed.

‘Do you think you knew her well?’

‘Yes,’ he said.

‘You feel comfortable talking about her to me?’

He thought for a few seconds and nodded.

‘So tell me everything. Tell me the story of Madhav and Riya.’

‘A story that fate left incomplete,’ he said.

‘Fate can be strange indeed.’

‘Where do I start? When we first met?’

‘Always a good place,’ I said.

 Thanks.

 ABHILASH RUHELA - VEERU!!!
Monday, 4 August 2014 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

My Speech at Bharati Vidyapeeth's Orientation Programme!

1127th BLOG POST -->>


  
           It's 3rd August today. The day when I joined Bharati Vidyapeeth in 2009 for my Graduation studies. I always believe that I found my self only after joining this college and interacting with faculties and children here. Cutting long story very very short, I am feeling quite honored to share it with all of you that Bharati Vidyapeeth gave me a call and asked me to be at their Orientation Ceremony for BBA-BCA new students and deliver a speech to motivate them and tell them about my experiences at college. I consider it a big achievement being called at my ex-college because of my achievements and establishments as the faculties said. I don't have the whole speech with me but I would like to share few paragraphs below that I spoke word to word. Rest was all spontaneous so let's not manipulate those words and write it in a formal language here. :-) 

FEW PARTS of the SPEECH

       
 Good morning teachers and all my dear friends, or say, juniors, just to make myself feel better. It has been a huge privilege to be back at Bharati Vidyapeeth, an institution that made me realize what I am capable of. This is the first day of your college and from here starts a journey that will be one of the smoothest yet toughest endeavour, interesting yet sometimes boring, formal yet crazy sometimes and memorable yet painful, sometimes. When we leave school, we see lot of dreams about how we would be portraying our best in the college to make ourselves look different. In the same fight, some times we end up being one of the best students at college or worst. It’s totally about how we see our college as. If you are positive right from the time when you decided that you want to be in this college, you will strive harder to make something out of this pragmatism. But if you have started with negative thoughts and attitudes, you need rigorous training and that you shall be met with very soon. 
     
   
Similarly, even I joined this college, 5 years back, with lots of dreams and motivation, with a will to do something different and take something out from this college. My class had not many but only 28 students as BCA-BBA was just growing then. Today, the college is known for these courses. When I see this seminar hall, the canteen, the classrooms, the laboratories, the library, the staff-rooms, the play ground and washroom, well, yes, as it was also the best excuse to leave classroom for 5 minutes and get freshen up between the lecture, it gives me immense pride that I was part of it once. This was all mines. I stayed with it for 3 whole years and never ever felt that my institution is below par or less than any other college I know. 

     
  When I joined Bharati Vidyapeeth, I was someone who was capable of 85% in SSC boards but ended up with 61%. I had failed in 11th twice. Once scoring just 8% marks in PCM. Somehow I cleared 12th with 55% but still my score at PCM was 36-38-39. I needed guidance and teaching which could have brought the same person back who was expected to score 90%. And luckily, I was in Bharati Vidyapeeth by scoring the highest marks in CET from all the students who took admission with me here. That was the first time since the motivation started coming in. When I just entered the college, the whole campus, the way teachers greeted and accepted us, made us feel part of this institution took all the fear away that I came with. I was told not to be afraid of any senior as ragging and bullying isn’t allowed here.

      After 1.5 months, on 19th September, 2009, Fresher’s Party happened and I won Mr. Fresher. If you think that was because of my excellence, it’s a complete NO. My seniors encouraged me the moment they saw that someone is trying to deliver but has lots of doubts about him. They made me dance, sing, talk and show my skills that day. Hence I would also like all of you to walk together with your seniors. They are not bully. When they say that the college isn’t nice, ask them how we can make it better. Whenever you are in doubt regarding any subject, make sure that you meet the senior who topped in it that year. Take all the help that you need from them because if you will not go to them, remember, their ego will never make them come to you. It is you who will have to go and shake hands with them. 

     Later on, the college kept on encouraging me and converted an introvert into an extreme extrovert. Sometimes, college, itself suffered what it did to me. The result of it is that half of the times, in the 3rd year, I was made to stand out of the class. Now you must be thinking what great is about that. Even we can achieve this feat of being thrown away from the class from the first day itself. But this college made me perform solo at the ZEAL, the annual function of Bharati Vidyapeeth. It made me win 1st and 2nd position respective at Traditional Day for two consecutive years. I won Carrom singles and doubles in the same year. Though my class was one of the junior that year, our team went on winning 2nd prize for Volleyball in Sport’s Day. The first time that I donated blood was because of the camp this college arranged and asked us to be a part of this and thus, taught us humanity. I was also selected by my teachers to host and anchor the first orientation programme that was held for BBA-BCA in 2010. 

*I spoke something between these paragraphs that I don't remember anymore but it was regarding how Bharati Vidyapeeth made me an extrovert and how the new students here will have to develop an Entrepreneur in themselves*

     
  These qualities of leading, monitoring, dealing, negotiating, holding the command even in adversities, challenging the wrong, initiating the right, carrying the proper attitude and respecting everyone- either below or above me has been imbibed in me by the faculties of this institution. The discipline, punctuality and power of taking risks is been taught by this college time and again. It has been 2 years since I have left the college but I am in contact with almost all the teachers including HoD. That’s because I feel home here. I have found teachers listening to my problems whenever I had any. They have made sure that a talent does not get wasted here. They identified me as someone who had potential but could not stand for himself and made me walk, run and fly whenever an opportunity struck. And this, they have done not only with me but almost every student. 

      When you are asked to sit 75% of the times in college, remember, teachers are also allowing you to bunk and rest for 25% of the times. When you are asked to write assignments and journals, remember, you are also been given internal marks for that which increases your overall percentage. When you are asked to bring your parents at college, you are made to realize that you are not meant to take stupid decisions without discussing with your guardian. And remember, you are in an institution that has recently completed 50 years. It’s an honour to be here. You deserved and you are welcomed. Now it’s all upon you to utilize all the resources optimistically and leave this college with a new found person and spirit in you. My best wishes are with everyone and I hope, these 3 years will carve you in a better person and yes, an Entrepreneur. 

 THANKS!