THE VANISHING HALF.

Author: Brit Bennett.

Genre: Contemporary family drama, historical fiction.

Triggerwarnings: racism, domestic violence, colourism.

Rating: 4⭐

Teenage light skinned black identical twins, Desiree and Stella Vigne, elope from a small town called Mallard in Louisiana. But soon after, Stella just vanishes leaving behind nothing but a note for Desiree. Years later, Desiree returns to Mallard with her dark skinned daughter Jude, while Stella continues to live hidden as a white woman with her white husband and their daughter, Kennedy, abandoning her own family. Their lives reach a full circle when their respective daughters come face to face unintentionally threatening to unveil the lie on which Stella has built the foundation of her new life.

This is one of the best recommendations I have received. While the theme of the book is colourism, racism and domestic violence, it also highlights the prejudice of colorism within the community. It was disturbing and empowering at the same time. It shows how the colour of the skin determines a lot of aspects in the lives of the people. It talks about the extent to which black and coloured people are shunned, that they don’t mind losing their own identity in order to be accepted. Characterization by the skin colour is prominent in the story to emphasize on the affects of racism. It hovers on the idea of bigotry, ethnicity, regret and a life based on a compulsive lie.

This book is a non- linear, multi- generational story of the Vigne twins. The characters are dynamic, raw, and show their grey side of survival. I was able to get into the flow of its smooth narration easily. There is an audiobook on YouTube that you can check out.

IN XANADU. A Quest

Author: William Dalrypmple.

Genre: Travelogue.

Rating:  4.5⭐

Xanadu, now Shangdu, is located in Inner Mongolia, northern China. It was the first capital and the summer capital of the Mongol Empire in the 1263. Xanadu was famous for its palaces, gardens and waterways and was Kublai Khan’s favourite summer palace.

Kublai Khan was the grandson of Genghis Khan and the founder of the Yuan Dynasty in the 13th century China. He was the ruler of the Mongol Empire for 30 yrs. During his reign, Xanadu flourished, making it one of the richest kingdoms. After Kublai Khan’s death, however, Yuan Dynasty started to decline, thus changing the face of the once prosperous city to shambles. Xanadu was believed to be so beautiful, that ‘Xanadu’ term is still used as a metaphor for opulence or an idyllic place.

In 1270s Marco Polo, a Venetian merchant, explorer and a writer travelled along the Silk Route with his father and his uncle and reached Xanadu where he served the court of Kublai Khan for 17 years. Though he was not the first European to reach China, Marco Polo was the first to leave a detailed chronicle of his experience. His travel book inspired Christopher Columbus and many other travellers. Author and his companions are one of the many who decided to retake this path once taken 7 centuries back. They started from Jerusalem to reach a tedious route with multiple ethenic diversities, landscapes and overcame diplomatic complications, struggled for basic comfort to finally reach Xanadu. This travelogue takes us through two timelines, 1270s and 1980s with the glimpse of the history compared to the present . He has collated his observations with that of Marco Polos, adding his own version about the aspects which were either not present or overlooked by the later.

It does take a moment to get into the book if you don’t know the background of the topic. I had to do my own research to understand the scene. Nevertheless, it improved my knowledge and I thoroughly enjoyed reading this hilarious travelogue. It has its ups and downs but never a dull moment.

OF DAFFODILS AND STORMY DAYS.

Author: Temsuienla Jamir.

Genre: Fiction, drama.

Publication: The write order.

Rating: 4 ⭐

The ever so graceful Asteria, a theater actor at Querencia is a daughter and a sister. Rich, poised but with an overbearing attitude of superiority, she manages her daily life as a superstar. Behind her glamorous facade, she tries to hide her estranged relationship with her family. Thus, one stormy day, Asteria finds herself in a queer situation that makes her rethink her past conducts that she conveniently chose to ignore.

Captivating narration, theatrical prose with just right emotions, this contemporary drama will sweep you through the story smoothly. The characters are moulded perfectly to intensify the exact sentiments intended towards them. This is a short book and the protagonist has a powerful character. The builtup of the yesteryears with pigeon posts, horse carriages, the theatre art gives it a classic touch.

Asteria’s character has all shades. At some point I detested her deeply but the next moment she melted my heart. Thei family bond, though estranged, is knotted beautifully. This story comes with a moral applicable to anyone who has ignored their surroundings, blinding themselves in self- loath.

A good one time read that I will definitely recommend to those who like to read light relationship based novels.

Killians Masterpiece by Jill Shannon. Book review


#genre : fiction, mafia, romance
(Book intended for adults only)

#Rating: 4 🌟

About the book:

Rachel, Don Santoro’s daughter, is an art thief with special skills. She agrees to do one last job for her father in exchange for her freedom. But the shipment is stollen before it reaches the destination. Now she has fourteen days to find out the shipment, deliver it and earn her freedom.

Rachel sets out on the quest to find the stollen shipment. The crumbs lead her to their arch rivals, “Celtic Demon Motorcycle Club” where she meets Killian. Knowing she may get her answers here, she infiltrates. But slowly loses herself to Killian and becomes his submissive .

Killian ‘Yankee’ Ramsey, Vice President of Celtic Demons Club, has pulled off a successful heist and they plan to use it as ransom in order to save their territory from Don Santoro. He is attracted to Rachel in a way, he is unable to ignore. But the best laid plans turn sour when their loyalties are tested.

Will Rachel be successful in locating the shipment? Will she get the freedom she much anticipates? At what cost? Will Killian get their side of the bargain or lose everything at stake?

First and foremost this book is only for adults, as it contains wild sex scenes. This book is a perfect blend of intense Mafia vs Motorcycle Club territorial war. The story starts with a bang. The character built up and dialogues are well constructed. I felt the sex scenes were overpowering the story as they were frequent than required. The story line up is fast paced and interesting. The book is a short and an enjoyable read

Intro

Hey all… Myself Aathira and I’m from Kerala, India. I love reading from my school life. My favourite genres are Mythology fiction, Fantasy and Thriller. But I also read other genres outside my favourites. I’m so happy to be a part of WFIB Blogging family.

The Cindrella of Karnal by Reecha Agarwal Goyal.Book review

Divya is cursed as an “inauspicious” since birth. Raised by her orthodox, paternal family and a single mother, she runs away from her home in Karnal to study Psychology. Here she befriends Ved and Kanika who become her lifeline. She finds herself amongst her trusted and supportive friends who become more than her family. But when has life been easy for Divya!

Life takes an upturn where she finds herself in a devastating web of social injustice and abuse, patriarchy, social discrimination. Will she be able to find herself once again? Will she be able to make her mother proud? Will she be able to fullfill her dream to help the people in Karnal with their emotional and psychological issues?

“Cindrella of Karnal” is a fast paced psychological thriller focusing on women centric social issues like female infanticide, molestation, sexual and mental harrasment, injustice towards single mothers and daughters and so much more. The suffering of women, physically and mentally, from an orthodox and dominating society is decribed very well. The story started smoothly but the unexpected twist midway was surprising. The second half of the book is gripping.

This short power-packed inspirational story of a run-way girl and her fight against all odds, is highly recommended to those who like to read woman centric psychological thrillers. This is not a Cinderella retelling, but an new story altogether.

What do you see? by KA Garraway.

#mayireviewyourbook
#bookpromotion

Book name: What do you see?

Author: K. A. Garraway
@what_do_you_see2020

Genre: Children’s book

Rating: 5 🌟

About the book:

#Qotd : Did you like the cover and the topic of the book?

‘What do you see’ is the story about the racism that Cassius faces in school which breaks his moral so much that he decides to not go to school at all. It is about how his mother motivates him to look at himself differently and face such situations with a different perspective as life for ‘them’ is not easy.

By them, here she means “black people”. It is appalling to see how children in school bully others for their skin colour. I am sure they don’t even know what that means. Why do they tease then!? They hear grownups tease others & children follow them blindly, don’t they? Irrespective of the colour, I am sure there are countless Cassius’s who face these racial injustice at such a tender age and sadly they do not even have that emotional maturity to deal with it. This book shows the first step to face such situations. It asks them to look at themselves in the mirror and appreciate what they see.

Honestly, I am impressed by the quality of the children’s stories that have evolved with time. Story books like these teach not just behavioural moral values but also deal with the emotional turmoil of the children. I remember during my childhood such deep, emotionally uplifting stories were hardly available.

Apart from the usual fairytales, such stories are extremely important for today’s kids to read, as they need to learn to fight back and know their self worth. This book is a gentle reminder with a powerful message to all the children that they are more than what they are superficially.

Needless to say, this book is a must have in every home with a child, irrespective of the colour of their skin. Because it is essential that both, the children who bully and those who get bullied read this book.

Fireflies at 3am by Danni Thomas

#mayireviewyourbook
#bookpromotion

Book name: Fireflies at 3am 🦋

Author: Danni Thomas @danni.shoetry

Genre: Shoetry

Edition: Paperback

#reviewpartner : @bookhookedofficial

Rating: 5⭐

#Qotd : What do you think of the cover? Would you like to read the “shoetry”?

“I had many affairs
She had one
She forgave me for all
I forgave her for none”

– Hurt: one of my favourite poems from the book. 🦋

“Fireflies at 3am” is a shoetry i.e. a one of a kind combination of short stories and poetry.

There are around 83 poems with each having unique illustrations. Some of which have short anecdotal stories along with it which are relatable and thought-provoking.

These poems are about sacrifices, beliefs, feelings, insecurities, self pride and righteousness, mental, emotional & physical abuse and much more.

The poems describe variables of human nature which are human yet inhuman, humourous yet satirical, superficial yet deep, anecdotal yet ironic, selfless yet selfish, racist and sexist.

The author has touched the chord of the deepest anguish, jealousy, love, hurt and agony perfectly in very few words. Some peoms are very short but decribe the ocean of emotions. I read this shoetry twice just to embrace the warmth it gave me while reading it.

I recommend this book not only to all the poetry lovers but also to the beginniners. The style is easy, quirky and will not disappoint.

“… And they lived happily ever after
Once upon a time” ..

The Cinderella of Karnal by Reecha Agarwal Goyal.

Review coming up next. Watch the space!

Introduction

Hello there, I am Yogeeta Yeram. I am currently 21 years old and about to become a graduate nurse. I love to read books, dance and travel. I am a great foodie. Looking forward to post some amazing blogs over here 😊

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