Rage of Angels – Sidney Sheldon

One of my all time favorites among Sidney Sheldon’€™s novels is, ‘€œRage of Angels’€, a real page-turner by the master storyteller. Published in 1980, it was adapted into a miniseries in 1983 which was followed by the sequel ‘€œRage of Angels: The Story Continues’€ (1986).

The story is based on the lives of three main protagonists: Jennifer Parker, a young assistant district attorney, with big ambitions. Michael Moretti, the would-be successor of the Mafia in America, on her first case and Adam Warner, her future love interest and lawyer who later on gains huge success in politics. Read about their lives as Jennifer finally achieves her dream of becoming a prominent lawyer, Michael runs the family and Adam sets on his journey towards the White House. The story evolves around the many twists and turns that make Sheldon’€™s novels so compelling.
Sheldon’€™s novels are said to resemble parts of the author’€™s real life, and this one is no exception. It’€™s a complete package of love, passion, power, struggle, and scandal. Jennifer symbolizes strength, determination, feminism and vulnerability. Michael, coming from a troubled past, has to go through a lot and finally reigns as king of the mob-world. Adam, on the other hand, has to make the choice between what he wants and what is expected of him. The characters have their own stories and Sheldon keeps all of them moving at the same pace, which creates many a good cliffhanger in the story. You will definitely get drawn into a fictional world.

I remember the time when I read it, after each chapter I would think just one more chapter now, and before I knew it, I had completed the whole book! The characters of the story seem so realistic; you can feel their emotions. To prove that even further, here is another fun fact. Sheldon says in his autobiography that women wrote to him saying they had become lawyers because they admired Jennifer so much. I was enthralled by the way the cases and their handling were described. At first, I had thought that all the courtroom descriptions would be boring for someone like me who doesn’€™t know a thing about law. However, now I can say that those were the best parts.

Rage of angels is definitely a thrilling adventure and the kind of story that you won’€™t be able to get out of your head. It all combines together to deliver a masterpiece, for me, Rage of Angels is definitely a book worth reading over and over again. You just can’€™t put it down!

 

 

Message in a Bottle

Do you believe in love? If yes, then you are sure to be spellbound by Message in a Bottle, a brilliant novel by Nicholas Sparks. The beautiful mixture of love, tragedy, happiness and family make this book a true international bestseller. A movie based on the novel and of the same name has also been made, following its huge success.

Theresa Osborne, the central character of the story, is a columnist for the Boston Times and a single mother. While enjoying a very hard to get vacation at Cape Cod, she one day faces a bizarre event; she finds a bottle floating in the sea. Upon opening, the bottle reveals a heart wrenchingly sad letter written by a man named Garret to his late wife. Intrigued very much by the letter, Theresa sets out on a mission to find the mysterious Garret. This is how the story starts. The rest of the novel details, their initial meeting and then how their relationship develops over time. From the very first time she read the letter, Theresa finds herself drawn to Garret. This attraction only deepens after they finally meet.

Love is blind. The story follows this saying as without ever seeing Garret, Theresa falls in love with him. Sounds bit hard to believe right! But, the letters, so beautifully written, make it happen. Obviously, the course of true love never did run smooth. Both protagonists also have to face many problems and have different issues to handle. And, sometimes the characters behave in such a difficult manner that you want to get inside the book and give them a piece of your mind. The story speaks of maintaining the balance between family life, work and love. The bond between Garret and his father and Theresa and her son can be easily seen. Sparks’€™ books are known for being the tale of timeless love, be it A Walk to Remember or The Notebook or Dear John. Message in a Bottle is no different. The words flow beautifully throughout the whole book captivating the readers. Wilmington, North Carolina, where the story takes place, has been described in such detail that it feels like one has visited. The waves in the ocean, the cool breeze, the beautiful scenery; all of it seems so real. And, there are adventurous parts as well, sailing and diving, which make reading a fun experience.

It is a love story packed with anger, confusion, hope and fear.  As in his other books, Sparks’€™ has created real characters with real emotions, characters that we can easily relate to. As we go deeper into the book, we find ourselves learning more about them and even feel like we know them. Sure, at some points, the story might feel bit far-fetched but this only makes it an even more interesting read. But, other than these parts, it is just a simple story of two normal people who are brought together by fate and who struggle through the obstacles in hope of finding everlasting love. The two are so different from each other in their way of viewing life; after her divorce, Theresa moves on and no longer reminisces about her ex-husband. Garret, on the other hand, finds it much more difficult to let go of the past and move on to a new life. Theresa has little faith left in true love but Garret still is strongly in love with his late wife. And yet, their differences, rather than pushing them away, aid in bringing them closer; the understanding and respect for the other person’€™s opinion strengthens their bond.

This book can make your heart leap with joy in a page and literally make you cry in the next, such is the power of Sparks’€™ writing. A sweet and sentimental tale of love and heart-wrenching moments has always been his strongest point. You won’€™t be able to read the book and not be touched by the pure love, affection and the tragedies. And, the great thing about the novel is that the tragic parts, rather than just sending out a sad vibe, contain a lesson and inspire us. However hard it may seem, we have to and can let go of the past and move on towards a better future; this is the message given out in Message in a Bottle. There are some lines that may strike you as clichés, but be prepared to expect surprises, that will keep resonating even after you have completed the book. And, don’€™t forget to keep a box of tissues by your side; dry eyes and this novel definitely don’€™t go together!

 

Google+

Google+ Google+ Google+!

This was what everyone’€™s mind was screaming about a month ago. The fact that the site had gained 20 million users after just three weeks of operation (and that was the ‘€œinvite-only’€ phase) clearly speaks of its popularity. So what is G+? What is it that made everyone go crazy about this site when there are clearly other related websites?

Google+ is a social-networking site by Google. Many people had named it ‘€œThe Facebook Killer!’€ Needless to say, this name served to increase its demand even more. Facebook, the social networking giant, had everyone hooked (which it still has, no doubt). Yet, all of a sudden this new site appeared which was said to throw that giant out of the market. Everybody, especially those who like to keep abreast of new technologies, became intrigued by this curious new site and wanted to know more about its special features and services. This intrigue was compounded by difficulty in registering, which afforded users a sense of exclusivity. At first the members could simply invite the people they wished but the high demand from users compelled the administrators to block the invitations.

Well, blocking the invites only increased its already high demand. If people are said told they are not allowed to open a locked box, they will try everything in their power to get that box open. A similar situation emerged with G+. Everyone wanted to join and everyone wanted to see what it was all about. Hence the 20 million users in three weeks, a feat that no other site has been able to achieve. Moreover, Facebook was, for some long term users, becoming old and boring so a new social networking site seemed just the perfect thing. It was quite interesting to see people’€™s Facebook status and tweets (mine included) exclaiming ‘€œI want a G+ account!’€

So how does it differ from Facebook and other social networking sites? The concept of ‘€œcircles’€ in G+ is quite similar to lists in Facebook and Twitter; one simply creates a circle or uses the default ones to add people. Then you can just share it with the circle you like. Each time before sharing a post, the user selects the circle they intend to share it with; that makes it easier to limit the availability to the ones we want. Then, there are sparks. These are similar to the interest pages; there are different fields to choose from such as fashion, movies, recipe, novels, dogs and Harry Potter (these are the ones I have added).  News related to these topics can then be displayed with just one click. The site is also easily accessible.  One can be using Gmail or Google search or any other Google app and then check G+ from the same page. So, even if you are searching for your college assignment on Google, you can simply click the top right notifications tab to access G+. And, of course, there is the great tracking capacity of G+; I was shocked when it pinpointed my exact location on the first attempt.

Well, even though it hasn’€™t exactly ‘€œkilled’€ Facebook as first expected, G+ is certainly attracting a lot of users in its beginning phase. What you have read are just my personal opinions as a G+ user. I have only touched on a few basic elements as I haven’€™t explored the site deeply. So there are still so many features left to be discovered. But, don’€™t blame me; Twitter, Facebook, mails, chats and now G+ really is a lot to handle at the same time!

 

2 States: The story of my Marriage

 

2 States is yet another bestseller by Chetan Bhagat, the author of Five Point Someone, One Night @ the Call Center and 3 Mistakes of My Life. Although similar to his other works in that the story follows events in the writer’€™s life, 2 States gets that little more personal as Bhagat opens up on the story of his marriage.

Krish is a Punjabi boy brought up in Delhi while Ananya is a Tamil Brahmin from Chennai. Even today, inter-cultural marriages are not supported by many people in India. The book draws on this theme by exploring how this couple had to convince everyone of their love and fight for their happiness. The story starts from the lunch line at IIMA mess hall where the two protagonists met. From here they become friends and fall in love. But the story really begins from the meeting of the boy and the girl’€™s family.

Although Krish keeps reminding Ananya of the fact that their love will not be easily accepted by their families, Ananya remains confident for she believes her parents will support her choice. As for Krish’€™s parents, she thinks they would accept her happily for who wouldn’€™t want an intelligent, smart and beautiful daughter-in-law? Not much guessing is required to know that the former was right. So, both of them have to take turns in persuading their parents to agree to their marriage, all the while keeping their love strong throughout all the chaos, misunderstandings and dramas.

The story is set in Delhi and Chennai and, as such, explores the social environment of these places. The Punjabi and South Indian lifestyle and culture could not have been more clearly expressed. It is indeed interesting to read how different two cultures from the same country can be.

Bhagat’€™s writing is simple and informal, which is not a new thing. There are no literary sentences that will strike you as beautifully written or leave you puzzled. Another thing is the story is predictable. From the first chapter, we can easily predict how the story will progress. As inter-cultural marriages are looked upon the same way in Nepal, this might not feel like a new or unheard story. Some readers might even be able to relate to the characters. No twists or turns are to be found as in other fictional novels. But, despite the predictability and the fact that it is not an absolute page-turner, you will not get bored or regret reading it.