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Friday, June 29, 2012

50 Shades of Grey - What's making it sell?

Fifty Shades of Grey, an erotic fiction written by EL James has become the fastest adult paperback novel to sell one million print copies!  The novel has broken the record of 'The Da Vinci Code' as well. 

Nielsen BookScan, a publishing tracking company figures out that the novel took only 11 weeks to reach the milestone, which is 25 weeks faster than the previous record holder, Dan Brown’s “The Da Vinci Code”. The Da Vinci Code took 36 weeks to pass the million marker.

Fifty Shades of Grey is now the 32nd bestselling book since records began in 1998.

So, what's the story all about? A literature student, Anastasia Steele and calculating businessperson Christian Grey enjoy a loving, sexual relationship which goes onto see the 50 sexual sides of Grey. 

The book is majorly making sales with its pacy and intriguing descriptions of the sexual encounters that keeps readers attentive, as well as involved throughout the story. It is a side of you that you would probably never experience or have the chance to live, and the anxiety is what keeps you holding on to the story. Fifty Shades of Grey has come out in a time when openly discussing 'Erotica' and topics related to it, is becoming open and easy.

Hence, the readers base is spreading virally too, making it a popular book among friends and colleagues as well. However, there is another group of critics which is not very moved by the book's success and claims that the writing isn't that great. 

The judgement finally lies in your hand, referring to these two very different school of thoughts. So, pick your copy and read the 'Fifty Shades of Grey', today! 

Don't forget to share your opinions with us. 

P.S. - services across Mumbai, Pune and Bangalore provides books on Rent-Read-Return model with plans starting at just Rs. 80/month! And we have the complete series of 50 Shades with us!

Keep Reading, keep sharing.

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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Scribble - Unleash the writer in you

So, that's the latest comment we have had at this unique initiative we called 'Scribble'! Author Ashwin Sanghi was kind enough to share his valuable thoughts on "What makes a writer?" for our fans at Librarywala.

For all those who have always wanted to give reading a chance. Who have thought and wished to have their name on a book cover. Who have loved writing for oneself and have never given themselves a chance to get it published. And to those, who have tried all of these, and yet never succeeded.

Scribble is a call out to all of these aspiring writers. A shout out to let them know that a great opportunity awaits them, and them must give their writing a chance! Scribble is a one of its kind initiative, where we give YOU the liberty to present your story/poem or any other form of writing, across any genre with us, and if we like it, we publish it!

What does Scribble have in store for you? 
Winners at Scribble shall be published in an e-book by! And their writings shall be shared across the internet. Who knows? This might be the great chance you were waiting for! It might just be the stepping stone to making you a literary sensation! Any chance - big or small, is definitely worth giving a shot and Scribble is nonetheless a great opportunity to see if people really like what you write.

Not just that, the winners of the contest shall be chosen by Author Ravi Subramanian - the first banking fiction author in India with two bestsellers under his belly including 'The Incredible Banker' and 'If God Was A Banker'. He has tremendous amount of experience with 4 books published and doing extremely well among the audiences.

As a participant, you have a golden opportunity right in front of you - getting mentored by a best selling author and then getting published in an e-book! Don't miss the chance and start scripting your story today.

How to participate?
You can send across your entry to us at in not more than 4000 words or less than 20 pages. You can send across multiple entries across any genre - stories/poems/comical instances - all our welcome!

Participants can also submit their entries on our facebook tab 'Scribble'. Just click here .

Leaving you with a beautiful quote which is truly very inspiring:
 “You can sit there, tense and worried, freezing the creative energies, or you can start writing something. It doesnt matter what. In five or ten minutes, the imagination will heat, the tightness will fade, and a certain spirit and rhythm will take over.” – Leonard Bernstein

Wish you luck!

Team Librarywala
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Sunday, April 1, 2012

Book Review: Only Time Will Tell by Jeffrey Archer

If you have read Jeffery Archer before, this book is no surprise. Two boys, with different lives and opposite family backgrounds cross paths; the only thing that is common is the father. The story revolves around them and their various experiences.

"Only Time Will Tell" is a similar one. With lead protagonist Harry Clifton starting his life in a wreck of a place with a dead father (assumed so), a difficult uncle fights his way with destiny and through the help of a hard working mother and a friend (half brother), he goes out of his way to make up for destiny's decision. 

Against odds, Harry turns into a fine young man and when puberty hits in, he falls in love Emma (who later turns to be his half sister). 

Finally the truth breaks in and strong decisions are to be made. The final decision when taken, takes Harry away from everyone - his mother, friend/brother and the love of his life. 

A tragedy strikes and the lives of the characters change completely. What happens to them?

To know that, you would have to read the book! 

Even when you know what the background is, the book proves to be an interesting read. Jeffery Archer makes every book look different even when you exactly know what the character in it are upto! Cheers to him and we hope to continue enjoy his writing in years to come. 

Rating: 3.5/5

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Monday, March 5, 2012

In conversation with Dan Brown, Author 'The Da Vinci Code'

How would you describe The Da Vinci Code to someone who has not read any of your previous novels?

The Da Vinci Code is the story of renowned Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon, who is summoned to the Louvre Museum to examine a series of cryptic symbols relating to Da Vinci's artwork. In decrypting the code, he uncovers the key to one of the greatest mysteries of all time…and he becomes a hunted man. One of the many qualities that makes The Da Vinci Code unique is the factual nature of the story. All the history, artwork, ancient documents, and secret rituals in the novel are accurate…as are the hidden codes revealed in some of Da Vinci's most famous paintings. 

Will your next book also feature Robert Langdon?

Indeed. I intend to make Robert Langdon my primary character for years to come. His expertise in symbology and iconography affords him the luxury of virtually endless adventures in exotic locales. Currently, I have rough sketches for almost a dozen Robert Langdon thrillers set in mysterious locations around the globe. 

Currently I'm writing another Robert Langdon thriller - the sequel to The Da Vinci Code. For the first time, Langdon will find himself embroiled in a mystery on U.S. soil. This new novel explores the hidden history of our nation's capital. 

Do you expect to explore other numerological cults -- such as the Pythagoreans, or perhaps the Kabbalists -- in future books?

Aha, the Kabbalists! Yes, they are fascinating…as are the Pythagoreans. Without a doubt Langdon will be exploring these groups more closely in the future. In fact, The Da Vinci Code includes a scene in which Langdon reveals basic Kabbalistic numerology and then uses it to break an enigmatic code. The book also drops a hint as to the identity of another ultrasecret numerology sect that fascinates me, but I can't reveal their name here without ruining much of the surprise of the next book. 

Which part of researching The Da Vinci Code was the most personally interesting to you? Were there any facts, symbols, or themes that you would have liked to include, but they just didn't make into the story?

For me the most astonishing aspect of researching The Da Vinci Code was the realization that one of history's greatest "secrets" is not nearly as secret as we think. Clues to its true nature are all around us…in art, music, architecture, legend, and history. In the words of Robert Langdon, "The signs are everywhere."

What are you reading right now? Are there any authors (living or dead) that you would name as influences?

As strange as this may sound, I very seldom read fiction. Because my novels require so much research, almost everything I read is non-fiction-histories, biographies, translations of ancient texts. Those few fiction writers who have inspired me most would be Ludlum for his plot intricacies, Steinbeck for his descriptions, and Shakespeare for his wordplay. 

What was the book that most influenced your life — and why?

Until I graduated from college, I had read almost no modern commercial fiction at all (having focused primarily on the "classics" in school). In 1994, while vacationing in Tahiti, I found an old copy of Sydney Sheldon's Doomsday Conspiracy on the beach. I read the first page… and then the next…and then the next. Several hours later, I finished the book and thought, "Hey, I can do that." Upon my return, I began work on my first novel-- Digital Fortress -- which was published in 1996.

What are your 2 favorite books —and why?

Of Mice and Men (John Steinbeck) —Simple, suspenseful, and poignant. Better yet, the first paragraph of every chapter is a master class in writing effective description.
Gödel, Escher, Bach (Douglas Hofstadter) —The 3% I actually understood was fascinating.
Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer) —I was amazed how well Archer handled the long time spans without ever losing the narrative pulse. The ultimate novel of sibling rivalry.

What are your favorite books to give — and get — as gifts?

This will sound nerdish, but the all-time best "gift book" has to be a leather-bound copy of the Oxford English Dictionary. How can you go wrong? Of course, don't forget a magnifying glass to go with it. 

Give us three "Good to Know" facts about you. Be creative. Tell us about your first job, the inspiration for your writing, any fun details that would enliven your page.

If I'm not at my desk by 4:00 A.M., I feel like I'm missing my most productive hours. In addition to starting early, I keep an antique hour glass on my desk and every hour break briefly to do pushups, sit-ups, and some quick stretches. I find this helps keep the blood (and ideas) flowing. I'm also a big fan of gravity boots. Hanging upside down seems to help me solve plot challenges by shifting my entire perspective. 

What else do you want your readers to know? Consider here your likes and dislikes, your interests and hobbies, your favorite ways to unwind — whatever comes to mind.

I've recently become fanatical about tennis (and play every afternoon when I finish writing). If anyone out here has any tips on hitting a consistent top-spin backhand, please fax them to Doubleday. 

Source - OnlineCollege

Monday, February 13, 2012

Anupam Kher at the Kala Ghoda Festival

Kala Ghoda Festival - 12/02/2012

On the last day of the Kala Ghoda Festival, we had a chance to be present at Anupam Kher's session on his book, "The Best Thing About You is You". 

The entire session was pretty inspirational and highly entertaining. We have tried to include some conversation threads and quotes Anupam Kher had shared during his conversation with Mr. Dharker:

- 'An event or an action fails. A person never fails!'

- 'I failed once in 10th standard, got a 38% in my graduation. Recently I was called to the 'Kellogg Business School' and I started my talk with these words,"While you're all scholars, I had scored 38% in my graduation. This shows that I must have done something good in my job.'

- 'We always talk about the power of success but we always under-estimate the power of failure. I learnt from the power of failure'

- 'One should celebrate his or her failure. That takes out the fear of failure from your mind.'

- 'I lost my father 2 days back. But I still wanted to come to the Kala Ghoda Festival because I wanted to live my life the way my father would have loved it. He loved to see my photos in the newspapers and he had a big album of all my photos, wherever he could find them. He was my best friend and would always be.'

- 'Don't put your happiness in somebody's hands. You should be in-charge of your happiness'

- 'We exist, we don't live. We need to start living.'

- 'If you try, you risk failure. If you don't, you ensure it' - Anupam Kher quotes Osho

- 'All your dreams can come true. You just have to work hard enough.'

- 'Stardom to me came as a bonus, I was just enjoying my work.' on quoting Robert De' niro

- 'When you're yourself, there's nothing you can hide'

- 'Love is not a 4 letter word, HOPE is!'

Tamasha in Bandargaon - Book Review

After a really long time I read a book in less than a week , because I had to write this review by that time and also mainly I couldn't keep the book down. "Tamasha in Bandargaon" by first time writer Navneet Jagannathan is a fun read to say the least. The author has spent his early years in Mumbai and Bangalore and that is truly reflected in his writing. Also it gives me immense sadistic pleasure if I find a typo or grammatical error in a book, but it is hard to do so with this one . The language is simple and grammar impeccable. The grammar nazi in me is super upset.

The back cover will tell you that the book is R.K.Narayan's Malgudi Days revisited . Yes , you could say that and constant comparison will happen but this book is no short of brilliant . It leaves you with a little afterglow , a sheepish smile on your face and a strong faith in happy endings. There is no Swami , but there is a Srinivasan . There is no strict father but there is a tyrant father in law , Sitaram Sajjanpur.There is no submissive mother but a strong affirmative Lakshibai. Its a book about the "Mango" people, "Aam" aadmi . There is tons of wry humour , strange situations and unpredictable madness. Each page has you gripped and brings along a new twist to the story.

This is a story of the fictitious suburb of Bandargaon hidden somewhere in the midst of Mumbai. Go back 20 years and you can say this is exactly how Mumbai used to be then .There's Sunrise Apartment with all its co-operative society politics. There's a slum nearby , where the help for these apartments come from . A gambling den which runs in the ruins of a corporation building and of course, a tea stall that is the center of all gossip and important meetings. A love triangle blooming among the youthful characters and a fight to woo the girl's family. Each character is beautifully defined and crisp with just the right blend of humour and color

Its a complete laugh riot to see how all these characters and situations intertwine with each other and troubles and worries of their journey disappear as they move on with their lives. This book has a "Nukkad" feel to it , with a lot of past to present transitions as the story of each character develops. The humour is more real and situational , not to forget easy to relate with rather than being over the top cheeky. It has a certain cuteness about it. A sequel could actually do well and maybe a TV series could follow - that is the drill isn't it? 

My personal favorite characters would be Suresh Borkari , the troubled son-in-law of an MLA candidate struggling to maintain a balance between keeping his wife and father in law both happy and in turn upsetting both. Chagan the roadside romeo and rogue will also bring out the soft corner in you and put a smile on your face more than once. The characters are the win - win about this book which will keep you hooked and leave you wanting for more. With this I end my review and suggest you to read this book with a cup of warm Chai in your hand.  
      " Yet another day ebbed in Bandargaon. And the music - the music played on "

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Friday, January 13, 2012

Trend of Movie adaptations from books

More filmmakers are opting for bestsellers rather than conventional movie scripts. Bollywood, over the years, has drawn heavily from literature. Filmmakers are looking at a slew of award winning books that not only have a huge fan base of their own, but also helps build the curiosity factor around a film.

The veteran filmmaker Vishal Bhardwaj is particularly fond of adapting literary works into his movies. His Blue Umbrella was an adaptation of Ruskin Bond's novel by the same title. His movies, Maqbool and Omkara were adapted from Shakespeare's Macbeth and Othello. 

His last, Saat Khoon Maaf was based on Bond's short story, Susanna's Seven Husbands. Directors like Govind Nihlani, Shyam Benegal, Mira Nair, Deepa Mehta and Anurag Kashyap have quite often adapted novels.

Shakespeare has been the biggest muse to Bollywood filmmakers and among the Indian authors, Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay and Premchand have been the favorites.

More than 15 Chattopadhyay novels have been adapted into films, out of which Devdas and Pareenita remain popular. Bollywood filmmakers PC Barua, Bimal Roy, Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Anurag Kashyap have made film versions of the novella.

Chetan Bhagat seems to be the current favourite of Bollywood. With two of his books already made into films (including 3 Idiots), two more are on the anvil. 

Anurag Kashyap ambitious project Bombay Velvet that he was going to make with Danny Boyle has been in limbo for more than two years. The film is loosely based on Gyan Prakash's 'Mumbai Fables'. He was initially planning to make this with Shah Rukh and Aamir Khan but later the director denied the news.  Karan Johar has landed the movie rights of this debut book – Immortals of Meluha by the bestselling author Amish Tripathi. 

Vishal Bhardwaj is going to adapt a story from the Mumbai-based crime reporter S Hussain Zaidi's (of Black Friday fame) book, Mafia Queens of Mumbai. Mira Nair's next The Reluctant fundamentalist is based on Mohsin Hamid's international bestseller. The film will star Kate Hudson. Her last film Namesake was adapted from JhumpaLahiri's famous novel with the same title.

Movie Adaptations to watch out for in 2012

2012 will see these international films adapted from books: 
"The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" by David Fincher stars Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara. It hinges on Stieg Larsson's crime novel and releases this week.

The much-anticipated "The Descendants" starring George Clooney is based on Kaui Hart Hemmings' work with the same title. Jonathan Safran Foer's 'Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close with a 9/11 background has Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock in its big screen adaptation. 

Colin Farrell-Keira Knightley starrer film noir London Boulevard builds on Ken Bruen's gangster novel. Hugo marks Martin Scorsese's debut in 3D. Yann Martel's bestseller Life of Pi has been adapted into a movie by Ang Lee.

So, the trend of movies being made out of books shall continue. Breaking news also demands us to share that Ashwin Sanghi's 'Chanakya Chant' is also going to be made into a movie as rights of it have been bought today by a production house driven by Ashutosh Gowariker. 

But what is your take on this? Do you believe a movie lives upto people's expectations, once they have already read the book?

What are your favorite movie adaptations? Let's hear it from you!