Sunday, 22 July 2018

Attack of the Ravens (कौवो का हमला) Hindi Novel Review

How fitting is the fact that the last Hindi novel that I read way back in 2007 was once made into a movie by sir Hitchcock, and now 11 years later, I'm reading another Hindi novel which is inspired to a degree from Hitchcock's classic thriller, "The Birds"!

Being an ardent comic book and novel reader since '98, I always try to look out for interesting stuff to read. When it came to novels, I mostly stuck with the ones in English language and if I remember correctly, the last Hindi novel I read was Robert Bloch's 'Psycho'. This was a suspenseful ride from the very first page to the shocking end, and was made into what is now considered the greatest horror film of all time, 'Psycho', directed by one of the absolute best directors of all time,  Sir Alfred Hitchcock. 

Ajay sir's promotion of his book on a regular basis on FB caught my interest one day and I decided to give it a try. When I heard about the flash sale, I anxiously started counting down the days but recently came upon a post stating that he had released the pdf of the book. I couldn't wait anymore now that the book was on the palm of my hands on my phone's screen.
I read it in one sitting in a span of 2 hours. 

The story follows the journey of a brother-sister duo and their laid back supportive father, who lock horns with a murder of evil crows in order to rescue their pet dog. The author has tried to inculcate a bunch of interesting facts in the story, so as to make the story even more engaging and informative to the reader, be it a curious young kid or an experimenting adult.

The chapters are short and don't seem to drag on unnecessarily, which helps with the pace of the story. The story is somewhat of a kid adventure tale that most certainly holds the power to engage an adult too, as it did with me. I used to read RL Stine's Goosebumps horror novels when I was a kid and the tone of this particular novel gave me a vibe of those stories, which were always a treat to read.

I especially loved the cover of the book. The evil dark crow amidst the dark bluish background looks stunningly beautiful.

Overall, I'd recommend it to Hindi readers to read on a lazy Sunday afternoon. I would also like to add that if you have kids, do try to give them this novel to read, as a kid would definitely love the light hearted tone of the story.

Although I've read the story, I'll definitely buy the hard copy in the flash sale because of 2 reasons:
1. The author has spent hours and hours promoting the book, and deserves something in return for this piece of art.
2. This is a kind of novel that one should have in their collection, not only to read themselves but to hand it over to their kid or even the neighbour's kid so that they can develop the habit of reading at an early age while having fun with it.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

(Thanks Rahul for this piece) This Guy From India Bowls/Spins Exactly Like The Legendary Sri Lankan Off Spinner, Muralitharan, Forces Batsmen To Dance!!

Since its inception in the late 80s, the game of Cricket has garnered a tremendous fan following. For countries like ours and Pakistan, it has taken a form of a Religion, with the rabid fans treating their favorite cricketers as Gods! Legends like Sachin, Warne, Lara and numerous others have carved their names in the history books as the absolute best.

But there’s one another name that needs to be mentioned while debating on who’s the very best. His name? 

Muttiah Muralitharan.

Murali bagged more than a thousand wickets in International Cricket over the course of 2 decades, and there’s doubt that anyone will ever be able to break his incredible record of 800 wickets in Test Cricket. Murali was surrounded by controversy throughout his legendary career, courtesy his unique bowling action, which was deemed by some as a ‘chuck’, but eventually he was given a green flag by the ICC after performing several tests on his action.

His unique bowling action was the result of a defective arm and allowed him to bowl lethal spins, earning the title of “The Magician”! His action is something which no one will be able to mimic.

Those were my thoughts before I stumbled upon this Youtube video. The video features a guy in his mid 20’s, practicing in the nets. The guy is bowling exactly like the man himself, Murali! But wait, he’s not only bowling like Murali, he’s also being able to deliver lethal off spinners, forcing the batsmen to dance uncomfortably on the pitch on a couple occasions!

Is this the 2nd coming of Murali? Watch and decide for yourself.

Friday, 29 July 2016

Blast From The Past: Aadamkhor Hatyara Comic Review

24th April2002
10.30 P.M.

I picked up a random comic from the stack I had purchased from a roadside vendor in the afternoon. Turned out to be a THS (Thrill Horror Suspense) comic, named “Aadamkhor Hatyara”. A perfect comic to read at this hour, I thought.
The cover boasted an ugly looking psycho killer about to kill a girl, with an axe stuck on his head, blood dripping profusely- the horror fanatic in me got a fangasm at that very sight! I finished it in 20 minutes.

I couldn’t sleep that night.

Aadamkhor Hatyara is one of the greatest horror comics produced in the history of Indian comics, in my opinion! And that’s coming from someone who has embraced this genre with open arms since his childhood, devouring all the horror movies, comics and games he could get his hands on!

The story is set in an old house, far away from the city’s hullabaloo, just beside a super creepy looking lake in a dark forest. The daughter of a renowned scientist decides to spend her vacation in that house with her friends, years after her scientist dad was mysteriously murdered in that very house. Little do they know that they are not the only people there. A raving mad cannibal is lurking around, aiming to quench his thirst for blood at the expense of the innocent gang of teens.

The story never loses it’s pace and every single panel on every page amounts to something. The beautifully  gruesome artwork perfectly compliments the brilliantly written story which is capable of inducing goosebumps to even the most fearless comic fan. The biggest USP of the comic is the twist at the end, which leaves the reader with a jolt of several emotions at once, and leaves them with a sense of sadness, even though the story has the most logical and satisfying end one could think of. The story doesn’t come to its fitting end before giving us the ever crucial life lesson- Don’t be quick to judge someone. Maybe there’s an ugly past behind them that has made them what they are.

I had bought this gem for Rs. 5, and it warrants several times more thrill, horror and suspense than today’s poorly written comic books and cringe inducing horror TV serials.
Aadamkhor Hatyara was published by Raj comics in the 90’s, a time period still considered by many as the Golden Era of Indian comics.

Looking at this comic book, it’s hard to argue with that statement.