Feb 26, 2010

Did you know....

  • BUS is the short term for 'Omnibus' that means everybody. 
  • DRAWING ROOM was actually a 'withdrawing room' where people withdrew after Dinner. Later the prefix 'with' was dropped.. 
  • QUEUE comes from 'Queen's Quest'. Long back a long row of people as waiting to see the Queen. Someone made the comment Queen's Quest.. 
  • TIPS come from 'To Insure Prompt Service'. In olden days to get Prompt service from servants in an inn, travelers used to drop coins in a Box on which was written 'To Insure Prompt Service'. This gave rise to the custom of Tips.
  • If you sneeze too hard, you can fracture a rib. If you try to suppress a sneeze, you can rupture a blood vessel in your head or neck and die. 
  • The cigarette lighter was invented before the matchbox.

Feb 25, 2010

You crave for the one that you didn't get

"You crave for the one that you didn't get"
This would be how you summarize Janet Gover's 'The Farmer Needs a Wife'. Delightful debt novel, a slightly different for the usual 'chic-lit' category. 'The farmer' is a story or rather four stories revolving around a single campaign by magazine "Australian Life".

Let’s meet the protagonists:

'Helen', the magazine's editor looking for the ever illusive success for sustaining her magazine.
'Matt', the stud farmer who is unaware of his photo being sent to a national magazine.

One running way from the past while the other embracing it. They touch the part of our careerist lives that dominate our dreams. On the scenic backdrop of Sydney's Opera House you rekindle your own hopes for long forgotten dreams.

'Greg', cane farmer by profession... a silversmith by passion, by heart. Stuck on his father's cane farm. In search of acceptance of love of a father, who never really loved anyone but his own farm. Looking to find someone to share his passions through the 'Farmer' campaign
'Jasi', from Melbourne, writing to Greg, while chasing a dream of a husband and children and leisure of countryside. To innocent to understand her own good, too naive to share his passion for sliver.
'Molly', the model turned freelance photographer. Arriving at cane farm to shoot Greg and Jasi for Australian Life. Finding more than just beautiful landscapes and scenes to photograph. Shunning a dream for better life and not finding it till the very end.

'Peter' and Jenny, loving siblings, in middle of harsh Australian Outback, raising two wonderful twins and working a way out of grief or Peter's Wife, Karen's Death. Peter unaware of Jenny's plan to find him a wife, awaiting a nanny for his adorable kids
Enter 'Sandra', a brit girl, in love with Australia, and all it has to offer, sunlight and sand. Searching for a way to stay in the country and finding a family to belong to instead.

'Leigh', a wine farmer. Spending her days and efforts in growing wine at a farm, and fighting against memories of a fiancé, who walked out of her life with her money and a neighbor who helped him do that.
'Simon', the neighbor, who lost something vital on the day Leigh's fiancé walked out on her. Grieving the loss, looking for comfort from Leigh, but only finding dislike from her. Seeing the campaign from Australian Life as his chance to do something good for Leigh, failing miserably at it and falling head over heels in love himself.

Four stories, four couples and a wonderful backdrop of Australia. The presence of the continent is like the fifth element of the story. Unlike other chic-lits this is set in UK or US. The influence of her upbringing is pretty clear in her debut novel. Even though, she is moved to UK now, her love for her birth-country is etched through the pages of novel. Sydney, Melbourne, Australian Outback, River Downs and farm life... all walks out of the pages into your living room. You can feel the breeze on the harbor, the heat of desert, and call of the wild from farms.

If you happen to pick this one up for a typical Chic-Lit romance, you are in for a treat of a different variety. 'The Farmer' not only gives you romance, but it gives you a warm walk through memory lane, of those days when you dreamt of being something you really loved, because you thought doing what you love mattered. It shows you that it’s never too late to chase your dreams.... coz sometimes, Dreams do come true.

Feb 23, 2010

Is it too late???

What do you miss most about being young?

The carefree college days?
Excitement/nervousness on the results day?
Bunking lectures?
Or more fun events like college days? Parties? Picnics with friends?

I bet most of us actually crave simpler things...
getting up late, mom's food, leisure times during the day, just chilling with friends....

You know what I miss the most?

I miss the sheer amount of enthusiasm I felt. Enthu for all sorts of things. And large amount of dreams I used to have. Dreams of success, money and eventually of happiness.

Half a decade later, the dreams have lost their shine...Money doesn’t hold glamour anymore; it’s a thing of necessity. Dreams of success wilted, shrank to a "better rating" at the end of year... and Happiness.... well there is nothing of the sort on the horizon.

It’s such a sad state that I look back and wonder "What Happened?"

Where did we miss the turn? How did we end up at this place and point of hopelessness.... aimlessness....? (Finding a job for better money, is NOT an AIM)

How did we lose sight of what was once so dear, so important in life... friends, family, smiles....

How and where did we lose out the fondness of pranks?
For lazy afternoons?
Wonders of clouds with weird shapes?

How did life turn out different than originally dreamed....?

You think it’s hard to change it now???

Feb 18, 2010

This one is for my best friend....

Few people are blessed with good friends. And some are lucky enough to have BEST one's. I fall in the later category.... I wrote following book review coz my best friend asked me to do it.... turned out one of my finest reviews yet... thought I should share.

If you have ever had a friend, or rather best friend, whom you have managed to hold on to, keep in contact with over the years, even when life has taken you two in different directions... you will LOVE reading Cecelia Ahern's Love, Rosie. The book was released with multiple names, few of which are Rosie Dunne and Where Rainbows End. I always wondered why that was, but haven't heard any reason for it.

Cecelia Ahern is mostly known for her first novel, which turned out to be a Best seller and was made into a movie with Hillary Swank and Gerald Butler... P.S. I Love You. The novel was start of a whirlwind career and Cecelia hasn’t stopped yet. Her following novels are not as famous as her first one; but trust me; they are much much much better while reading.

I had sworn off Cecelia after reading P.S.I Love You, since that was a total emotional roller-coaster. But like all BAD things, her books have been attracting me through the shelves of book stores, and I keep on falling into temptations and buy them. Only to renew my resolution of swearing off of her books, due to excessive emotional stirrings. Somehow with every book she wrote, she has made a point to touch upon a facet of human emotions and life that we tend to overlook. Take for example the novel in question here.... Love, Rosie.

We all had friends in school. A special one who we chatted up and passed chits while classes were running. Someone with whom we shared our tiffin and gossiped about what you saw your elder bro doing after school. Someone whom we thought was bound to be around us through our lives. School days gradually gave way to college and the position of the best friend switched position with someone new. Once again, the mates in class turned our partners in crime, bunking college, going to movies and an occasional booze session at someone's house. When life took turn towards career, friends moved away and faded into memories. How many of those so called Best Friends are you still in touch with? Not via Orkut or Facebook, but via calls, emails and phones?

That’s where Cecelia's “Love, Rosie” takes us. Down the memory lane when life's biggest decision was between finishing a school assignment and watching TV. Where friends were supposed to be someone who shared your fears of failing in grade exams. Only difference is that the protagonists in the novel, Rosie Dunne and Alex Stewart, actually manage to hold on to each other through the thick and thin of their lives.

It’s an epistolary novel, set in Ireland, about two lovely friends Rosie and Alex. You open the first pages of the novel and are invited to her 7th b'day. BTW, for those who don't know what epistolary is, it means a novel written in form of correspondence. i.e. it’s a book full of written exchanges between the people, notes exchanged in classroom, letters, emails, sms etc etc. Coming back to the story. Love, Rosie takes you through the world of Rosie Dunne, via the pages and pages full of exchanges she has made with people, rather important people in her life. Though the exchanges involve all people around her, the theme of the whole story revolves around her Best Friend Alex.

I've hardly have read a book with the speed I finished this one. Mostly because, the very nature of the book is friendly, short and sweet. You are never really boggled with who is talking about what, since they talk like we normally do. A span of a life time.... almost half a decade, rushes through the 500 pages of the book, and you are taken into the stream without even realizing when you were caught. You get to meet both of them at 7 years of age, and get to grow old with them, till the ripe age of 50. You get to see them falling in love, out of love, into marriages and child births. You get to see them loving each other and experience the nervousness of not realising that it is love.... you get at the edge of the seat wondering why are they not telling each other, and by the time you reach middle of the book you are too exhausted being too involved in the story. You smile at their goof-ups, worry about them, smile with them and cry along with them. You feel the happiness shining on their faces, and you feel the moisture glistening in their eyes when life hits them.

By the time the 500 pages of the book are over, you almost feel content. Content to know that destiny sometimes takes a longer route, but it reaches the destination. Happy that things are falling in place, sad that life took so long to correct its simple mistake.... And sad that the book actually came to an end.

Once again, you realise the wonder of having a best friend. One who understands you without words, someone who listens to you cribbing about life, and someone who shares the joy of just sitting on the porch with, without talking. So, if you have such a friend, do read Love, Rosie and share the warmth with those whom you love.... coz I just did, and it’s a wonderful feeling. :)

Feb 9, 2010

It's a girl thing...

I'm hooked on Chic lits these days....

I still remember the very first one I ever picked up... it was Rachel Gibson's S*x, Lies and Online Dating. A funny little book about an author, who is setting her next novel in an online dating arena.. where a killer meets his potential victims via dating sites; a murderer who is following everything she's writing; and an under-cover police officer who's investigating the author.... meeting her up with a false name online... :)

Like any other typical Rachel Gibson novel, this one has a lot of funny situations, great dialogues, easy flowing narrative and load of steamy situations....  a female in a shitty social situation, mostly tired of her job and boss and unforgiving city... tired of love and bad boys who hurt her, break her heart with every step that they take. A new job in sight or may be a change in the current job, a new man also... most of the times two things clashing with each other... the whole girl meets boy, girl hates the boy and then starts liking him and falling head over heels.... first in lust and then finally tumbling into love...

Any classic chic-lit follows similar plot line... sometimes the girl works in a fashion house, or a magazine... sometimes she's a writer, sometimes she's a teacher at others she's a reporter... an art critic or even a store owner....

I'm addicted to these funny little books, especially by a publication called "little black dress".... just like their tag line.... "Its a girl thing"

more coming your way soon....