Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Ted



"It must be tough, right?" I asked Ted one day.

"Yes man, it indeed is. I go for farming, then cook dishes and sell them to customers. Once I am done with these, I have to hunt down criminals."

Now that was exciting. Ted surely seemed to be a multi-talented individual, contrary to everything else that I had heard about him from others.

"How do you manage?"

"You got to have everything on your fingertips dude," he said, and then added, "I need your help."

"Sure."

"Please accept my Facebook game requests for Kitchen Scramble, Farmville and Criminal Case."


This 99 word fiction is shared with Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - T.



Ramayana - The Game of Life : Rise of the Sun Prince (Book 1) - Review

Ramayana: The Game of Life (Book 1), one of the world's great literary masterpieces, skillfully retold for modern audiences. Epics like the Ramayana have been recounted infinite times. Is there a need for another chronicle in the presence of so many? How is this one different? And is it relevant to our ever-changing modern lives? 
Yes, there is a need, yes this is different and yes, it is relevant. This new series of books, each following one khand of the Ramayana, decodes the eternal wisdom of that poetic scripture through gripping narrative and thought-provoking instruction. In the time-honored custom of spreading wisdom through tales, every fascinating story in the epic is retold here and every character unfolded to captivate your heart and open your mind to lifes deepest questions.
The narrative closely follows Valmikis Ramayana, gently weaving in folk tales as well as the beautiful analogies of the Kamba Ramayana. The first of this six-volume series, Rise of the Sun Prince, takes you through the divine story of Lord Rama from His birth up to His marriage. Through these pages are revealed the tales of Dasarathas leadership, Vishwamitras quest for power and the intriguing story of a little-known stone maiden. Ramayana: The Game of Life has all of this and much more - food for contemporary thought drawn from an enduring masterpiece.

About the Author
Shubha Vilas, a spiritual seeker and a motivational speaker, holds a degree in engineering and law with specialization in Patent Law. His leadership seminars are popular with top-level management in corporate houses. He also helps individuals deal with modern-life situations by applying the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana and other dharmic traditions.


If epics are to be retold, this is how it should be done. Most of us would already be familiar with the basic plot of Ramayana, having heard the stories as bed time tales during our childhood from our parents and grandparents, elder siblings and relatives. However, it’s the treatment meted out in this book that really makes it stand tall among several other modern interpretations.

‘Rise of the Sun Prince’ is basically the ‘Bala Kanda’, or the first part of the epic Ramayana, and deals with fighting grave internal battles and overcoming great odds to emerge victorious and become exemplary. It incorporates the principle of humility, and how pride should be swallowed to focus on your ultimate goal. As humans, we have the tendency to be selfish and self-centered, not caring about the rest. However, the purpose of life and existence is not to just think of your own self, but also the world around us. The book teaches us to let go and surrender to the Supreme One, and always walk towards the path of righteousness. This book doesn't just tell stories, but also guides us in emulating the lessons learnt in our real lives.

Author Shubha Vilas does a great job in presenting the mythological tale in a fresh and unique manner. The narration is crisp, making this book an absolute page-turner. What’s engrossing is the fact that the author has not only stressed on the primary characters, but he seems to have done extensive research to have brought out several other stories that are related to or have lead to the Ramayana. There are stories of Gods, Demi-Gods, Kings and Queens that form an integral part of this narration.

The front cover is striking and colorful, and immediately catches your attention. It depicts Rama and Lakshmana protecting Vishwamitra’s rites from Maricha and Subahu, which is an important sub-plot in this book. This incident, like many others in Ramayana, symbolizes the victory of good over evil, which again is an important lesson in life. It teaches us to be strong, and walk on the path that leads to truth, even though it may be tough, ‘cause evil never persists for long.

Another beautiful feature of this book is the footnote. There are footnotes comprising of anecdotes and key lessons in almost every page, relating to the events that the particular page comprises of. They explain the incidents and their relevance in modern perspective, and how we can adopt them in our lives and learn to live in a better manner.

This is one book that I would label as must read, for the beautiful presentation of the stories of the wonderful epic Ramayana. The style is engrossing, and you really wouldn't like to keep the book down. I am already eager to read the next book in the series – ‘Shattered Dreams’, and trust me, so would you. The magic of epic joins hands with the author’s brilliant story-telling prowess, and we have a book that will surely capture our minds and rule our hearts.


Title: Ramayana - The Game of Life : Rise of the Sun Prince (Book 1)
Authors: Shubha Vilas
Publisher: Jaico Publishing House
Publication Year: 2013
Language: English
Binding: Paperback
Genre: Religious, Mythology
No. of Pages: 256
Price: Rs 250
My Rating: 4/5



Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Sid



Sid wasn't just any other man. He was my guy, my love, the dreams which played alongside veiled fantasies.

And then he told me, "I am going to get married next month."

You know that sound when glass breaks. A hundred shards pierced my skin, and blood screamed aloud in salty tears.

"Why can't we ...," and he stopped me. We both knew the answer. Laws might have changed, but the society still remained the same.

"Let's forget whatever happened between us," he said, and I nodded.

We weren't straight, and life punished us with this cruelly twisted turn.


This 99 word fiction is shared with Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - S.




Monday, April 21, 2014

Rainbows High And Low



look how these fish swim
across clouds and painted waves
rainbows high and low


This Haiku is shared with Carpe Diem - Kite.



Raja



"Don't waste paper," people told him, but Raja never listened.

"A King does whatever he wants," he laughed. "Cut all the trees to make paper and I will play with boats and planes."

The trees decided to teach him a lesson.

Next day, when Raja went to the forest, the trees held him in their branches, "Throw him up. He is our aero-plane. Then we will make a boat out of him."

He was tossed in air, and dipped in lake. Fear seized Raja and he apologized, "My acts would now be clean. My motto forever - Go Green."


This 99 word fiction is shared with Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - R.



Saturday, April 19, 2014

Quinton



"Don't you dare lie to me Quinton. Tell me honestly, where were you last night?"

"Trust me darling. It was just, just that she was a bit upset, and as a friend I thought to accompany her to her home."

"And?"

"I told you sweetheart, she was lonely, and full of tears. A hug isn't that bad, right?"

"And what about the kiss?"

"Ya, a hug without a kiss wouldn't have looked good, so..."

"Then?"

"A little love game to cheer her up, just a little..."

"A little. Right. Goodbye Quinton."

BANG!!!

A bullet raced. He fell. She giggled.


This 99 word fiction is shared with Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - Q.



Friday, April 18, 2014

Pizza Guy



"Two Regular-sized Classic Chicken Pizza with extra cheese."

"Sure Sir. The order will be delivered within 30 minutes, else you can have it for free."

And thus starts the race,
His Bike In Top Gear,
Our Pizza Guy steady on chase,
In destinations far, and near.

Even a minute of delay would make Pizza Guy bear the entire cost of delivery as per company's rules. He had to reach on time.

His bike shook, hit and then, numb. Cold blood. Deep black sleep.

"Where's the pizza, dude?"

"We are sorry, Sir. We'll be providing it to you for free."


This 99 word fiction is shared with Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - P.



Thursday, April 17, 2014

Orlando



"You want to be an actor, huh. What's your name kid?"

"Orlando."

"A carefully chosen name I see. But name alone won't make you a star you know."

"Who said I want to be an actor or a star? It's Superstar for me, Sir."

Another failed audition, and yet that self-pride never abandoned him.

"I don't think we can be together, Orli. We should split."

"Yeah, I understand baby, but I am trying."

"No. You are not. Anyways, am getting late. Bye."

Love deserted him as well, but he stood firm.

"This Orlando too will bloom someday," he smiled.


This 99 word fiction is shared with Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - O.



Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Niraj



"God, this cell phone sucks." With the mobile switching off again in the midst of their conversation, anger rose in his veins. Niraj threw the device hard on the wall, the impact leading to a thousand pieces of metal.

"Time for some action." Niraj collected the pieces and ran towards the kitchen. In a kettle of hot water, he poured the junks, waiting for them to dissolve. A bluish solution formed after a few minutes, and he gulped it in one go.

"Who needs a phone now?" He dialed the numbers in his mind, and got connected once again.


This 99 word fiction is shared with Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - N.



Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Meethi



"What's your name?" I asked the little girl sitting by the roadside, selling flowers, wearied in the oppressive summer heat.

"Meethi," she replied, her voice barely audible.

"That's a sweet name," I smiled, and handed her the packet of books. As a social worker, I had always advocated the need for education of poor children. Distributing books had thus become an essential  part of my mission.

She took the packet and ran towards the other children standing nearby. I gaped in shock as they tore the pages and gobbled away in delight.

Perhaps, poverty craves food more than education.


This 99 word fiction is shared with Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - M.