Sunday, March 9, 2014

It's All About 'YOU' - Book Review


It’s All About ‘YOU’
By Prakhar Porwal & Ahona Das
Review By Ila Garg

The anthology comprising of 15 short stories, It’s All About ‘YOU’, has been published by Power Publishers. Let’s start with the cover. It’s a simple one. However, I flipped it a lot many times to search for the publisher’s logo or name, but I found nothing. No mention of publisher is made at all. Also, it’s not mentioned whether Prakhar and Ahona are editors or compilers of the work. In addition, it’s not clear from the cover that whether it is a novel or an anthology. 

Next, let’s talk about the 15 stories one by one. As I personally feel that without talking about each story individually, the review wouldn’t be complete and it wouldn’t be a justified review of this anthology. I don’t want anyone to feel left out, so here you go:

1. EXCUSE ME? by Prakhar Porwal: This is a story of Amanpreet Kaur, a typical Punjabi girl at heart. I didn’t like the way it started. I also felt the story was too fast paced, yet I liked the plot. I feel if the author could work a little more on its narration and the flow, it would be having a much better impact on the readers.

2. LOVE AT FIRST VOICE by Prakhar Porwal: This story is nicely written. It has a very sombre ending. The language is equally serious, though engaging, and it somehow makes you one with the character. A little clichéd plot, yet I liked the way the author has scribbled emotions into it. 

3. A LUCKNOVITE OPERETTA by Anush Ghosh: This story moves Aamir and Yasmina. How destiny makes them bump into each other and how they fell in love and expressed it. The narration and flow is nice. However, this story lacks in its plot.

4. A PATCH UP PARTY by Pritam Ghosh: This story is about the two friends who reunited after five six years. Time changes everything, including people - is the main theme here. A story written with a deep emotional touch.

5. A RAIN OF LOVE by Prakhar Porwal: Nice story, very illustrative. Narration is tasteful, so is the beginning. Liked the way the author has instilled emotions into the plot and kept the language simple & engaging.  

6. BEING UGLY ISN’T A CRIME by Rounak R Nayak: This story could have been so much better. The plot is good but it should have been more explanatory. A lot of questions remain unanswered like what happened between Niharika and Angad that made her choose him over Angad, despite of his ugly looks. 

7. ‘HAPPY’ VALENTINE’S DAY by Ahona Das: Ah! Perhaps the shortest one. Actually it looked more of an article to me, rather than a short story. Just 2 sides of the paper. I liked it because of its content and the title. But as a story it didn’t appeal much to me.

8. I AM A KILLER by Akash Srivastava: An in and out love story! Simple, easy to understand language. A story that moves to and fro in past and present. Even the pace is kept smooth for the readers. 

9. I AM AN ENGINEER by Pritam Ghosh: A nice narrative. It began a little vaguely but it managed to reach a good end. This author has potential, though needs to work on the descriptive part of a story and not only focus on narrating. 

10. MY ULTIMATE DESTINATION by Zainab Sabir: Amm… This story had a good plot. Narration was nice. Language is also reader friendly. A little more could have been added, though. 

11. THE ALARM BUZZER by Akash Srivastava: The ending was abrupt, though I liked the story. The title however fails to connect with the plot much. It was a totally dramatic story overall. 

12. THE FIRST LOVE by Abhishek Sharma: One of the best stories perhaps in the whole anthology. I liked how it moved from the beginning to the end. The poem is gripping too. Aptly narrated story that I enjoyed reading.

13. THE GEEKY GIRL by Rounak R Nayak: A well narrated piece of writing. The descriptions were done nicely too. The setting was perfectly elaborated. I found it well knit from beginning to end.

14. THE GIRL BEHIND THE COUNTER by Raghu Ravi: My My.... what an amazement!! This one is plagiarised as per sources. "A direct copy of a story with the same title written by another author in the more popular anthology 'love Stories That Touched My Heart', edited by Ravinder Singh."

15. AAJ BOHOT DINO BAAD by Ahona Das: A Hindi poetry to end with! I liked this poem for its emotional appeal. Ahona manages to get the right words to connect the hearts of the readers with this work of art.

Overall, a nice anthology with some newbie contributors! I liked the stories towards the end more than the stories that this anthology began with. I would also like to add that the book has plenty of hiccups; found a lot of punctuation errors, grammatical mistakes, spelling mistakes, etc. It seemed no editing or even proofreading or the typeset too for that matter is done before printing. The stories felt very raw, as if just hand picked and arranged one after the other without even realising that in an anthology sequence matters too. Some of them cannot even be categorized as stories; they felt more of articles, blog posts, and what not! I found the work a little immature. All the contributors seemed to have talent, however they lack in execution. Wishing good luck to all of you for future endeavours.

Rating: 0.5/5 (Mostly because of Story No. 14)

Thank you to the readers for letting me know about it. xoxo

4 comments:

  1. I hate to say this but the story "the girl behind the counter" seems to be a direct copy of a story with the same title written by another author in the more popular anthology 'love Stories That Touched My Heart', edited by Ravinder Singh. If so, it is a clear case of plagiarism

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    1. Thank you so much. *corrected* xoxo

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  2. The story 'The Girl Behind The Counter' by a Mr. Raghu Ravi in this book is almost a word to word copy of a story also entitled "The Girl Behind The Counter" published by Penguin India in their anthology "Love Stories That Touched My Heart" edited by popular author Ravinder Singh. This Penguin book was published over a year ago. It seems to be a sorry state of affairs, if a story has been published by the publishers without taking an undertaking from the author on the originality of the story, making the author liable for action in case of any plagiarism.

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    1. Thank you dear for this crucial information. As such I didn't like this anthology and now this thing has really made me despise it all the more. *corrected my review* xoxo

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