It’s Awesome #Review Time For ‘Our Particular Shadows’

our-particular-shadows

Our Particular Shadows has received a thoughtful and delightful professional review from Readers’ Favorite!

It begins like this:

If you are looking for a collection of short stories that express various emotions but should be sipped upon as a fine wine, Our Particular Shadows (Shadow Stories Book 1) by Radhika Mukherjee can be the taste for your palate.

And then just makes my hear sing!

Read the full Review!!

To take the journey, at $0.99 for the eBook, go to:

Amazon: getBook.at/OPS

B&N, Apple, Kobo, Scribd: https://books2read.com/u/38DxMw

Happy soulful reading!🙂

An Amazing 5-Star #Review for Our Particular Shadows

Flower Present

It’s a good day when the the morning brings you news of a 5-star review for your book, right? Like someone giving you a flower!

Our Particular Shadows was called ‘delightfully much like poetry’ and ‘Spellbinding!’ on Goodreads and my heart is just brimming over!

Here’s the full review!

And just in case you want to check out the eBook on Amazon: CLICK HERE!

I’d love for you to experience my poetic micro-fiction!

In Which I Melt Your Brains with My Scene-By-Scene Reactions to #HarryPotterAndTheCursedChild

Cursed Child

Totally almost non-spoilerey, scene-by-scene reactions!

This is how it all began:

So excited to start reading #HarryPotterAndTheCursedChild!! With a lot of EEEEEEEs!! (Of excitement, not terror!)

And then:             

Eww! Harry, Ron and Hermione sound like bored suburban parents in Act 1, Scene 1 & 2. Nothing magical! 😦

harry ugh

Act 1 Scene 3 (A1S3) of #HarryPotterAndTheCursedChild is looking interesting! They’re going to try and invert things i think! Cool!

A1S4:

I LIKE Scorpius! Only one with any humanity/ personality so far!

So sweet he is, this Scorpius! To think I could ever appreciate a Malfoy! Well played! Well played!

I’m confused! How can the Sorting Hat be walking??

And then the Sorting Hat “puts his hat on Rose’s head”! Strange right?

Poor Albus!! I feel for him now! Bad Sorting Hat!

Someone or something has totally cursed Albus! (I hope he’s not the Cursed Child!!) #poormite

Wow! Is Harry clueless about Albus in A1S4, or what? They couldn’t have a heart to heart over the holidays?

They’re overdoing Platform 9 3/4! It’s not that charming! I feel rushed, like I should catch a train!

Draco Malfoy has a ponytail! Cool!

Harry should get a prize for sensitive person of the year! #Not #WhatAMeanie

How are the Malfoys getting all the empathy till this point?

I cannot stop raving about how sweet this #ScorpiusMalfoy is!! Only kid-like kid in here! #adorable

Why couldn’t they have a scene at Harry’s house? Does everything need to be resolved at the platform?

Here I am, heart breaking for #ScorpiusMalfoy! Sniff!

Uf! Finally that never-ending Act 1, Scene 4 is over! Devastating! Onto 5. Ordered lunch!

A1S5:

To sugar or not to sugar is the question apparently!

Happy for feminism BTW!

Where’s my lunch? All the sweets are making me hungrier!

sugar

Lunch:

Lunch is here, so taking a break! Don’t want to get food on the new book! #BRB

Lunch done, emails done! I’m back to reading #HarryPotterAndTheCursedChild #yay!

The dialogue in the book was so much better! #nostalgia

A1S6:

Finally! We arrive at Harry and Ginny’s house!! #ICanBreatheNow

Things are getting serious! I sense that we are about to enter the actual plot!

Oh someone who’s cheerful at last! #Delphi! Reminds me I miss how Ron used to lighten things up. Sigh!

I really like clumsy characters! They’re so charming! I’m rooting for Delphi!

A1S7:

Awww! Poor Harry! He’s trying so hard! okay, I’m coming around to grown up Harry. Hooray!

Whoopsy Daisies! The way the scene ends!!  #suspense

A1S8:

The Dursleys are back! #why? #whygodwhy

Complete rerun. Why was it necessary? No idea!

A1S9 : Things are heating up! Portents are portending! Terribly stilted husband-wife conversation! That’s A1S9 for you!

A1S10:

Why do they have to be so self-conscious about hugging?

Some action is beginning to boil up! At last! #Yay!

A1S11:

Oh my gosh! The trolley witch! Wow!

eeks

And off we go!

A1S12: Expected more from Hermione’s character! Draco being the old Draco. O well!

A1S13: Cute!

A1S14: I miss the books! They were so much richer! Anyway, the action proper begins here.

A1S15: Harry, Ron, etc. haven’t been written right. Don’t feel right as adults or teens. But revelation time!

A1S16: O look! Polyjuice Potion my old friend! #huh? #why?

A1S17:

It’s way too freaky to hear the words”My Department” coming from the mouth of Harry Potter!

harry

Still don’t understand #Albus at all! Even at Act 1 Sc 17. Maybe he’ll grow on me?

Back after a break! So to business!

A1S18:

Tension rising! I start to believe a little…

I have one word: Ewwwwww!!

So many #Ewwwwws!!

A1S19:

Complete chaos with none of the cleverness of the books. Or structure. Meh!

Really? It was all laid out to solve and find? Why? What? How? Also, too easy! Like sloppy fan fiction!

A2S1: Young Harry will break your heart! Also, nice magical suspense being built up!   #prayingforliftoff

A2S2: Tiny scene but hard work to read this overall! I am flagging fast! Even with breaks.

A2S3: Why are they all so rushed and cryptic? Great plays are never so!

A2S4: Wow! Feminism happened for nothing! Nothing I tell you! Also, Ew!

A2S5: Seriously, why do the centaurs have to be so mean? Mean writing ya! Just mean! Don’t we get to like anyone? It all has to be angst, angst, angst, is it?

A2S6: Scorpius strikes again! There he goes being all sweet and tugging at the heartstrings!

A2S6: Look, look! Magic! Special effects! Kinda feels like a Harry Potter. Distantly.

A2S7: More of the old. They don’t like girls here. Mom and daughter are identical? Magical cloning? #Wow

A2S7: Oh, Oh! Excitement! Strum and Drang!! Suspense! That’s what I’m talking about!

A2S8:

Dumbledore reduced to ‘kindly’! Oh unkind fate!

Dude, you’re an adult now! Make your own decisions already!

Okay, sorry! Wrong advice! Harry sucks at adulting!

A2S9: What on earth is PANJU!!! They know it’s slang in India, right? Wow! Just wow!! #EWWWWW

A2S9: Harry! Harry! Harry! Some sensitivity would be much appreciated by us all!

A2S10: What a numpty!! Harry that is. Do these writers just hate Harry?

A2S11: And Hermione too? They have gone too far I tell you! There will be an uprising!

A2S12: Those poor mites #Albus and #Scorpius! This is the emotional heart of the story!

A2S13: As adults also they’re using Expelliarmus! No imagination only!

A2S14:

How on earth does a non-student/non-teacher just slip into Hogwarts like that? Did they not read Hogwarts: A History?

Drowning in sentiment here!

A2S15: How come only one thing, Ron-Hermione changes? #TheyMustThinkWe’reDim

A2S15: Draco Malfoy! So very human. Who knew? I like it! Ginny’s pretty cool too!

A2S16: Uh! Apparently the jealously was all important! Weak! #TheyMustThinkWe’reDim

A2S16:

Okay, they’re taking the underdog thing too far and too literally with no resonance!

Where has all of McGonagall’s power gone?

Mc

Boys expressing their emotions. Nice idea, badly done.

A2S17: O Ron! O Hermione! Double sigh!

A2S18: Filler. Necessary. But…

A2S19: Will it work?

A2S20: Oh oh! Albus and Scorpius really messed it up this time! What scamps! But it’s getting compelling!

A3S1: Chilling! Also, go alternate Scorpius!

A3S2: Total terror now! What a world! Clever, to conjure this possibility…

A3S3: At least Draco didn’t go all Voldemort on Scorpius!

A3S4: How can alternate Scorpius be soooooo different?

A3S5: This is the real stuff, this scene! Nice new spell: Colloportus!

A3S6: Go Hermione!! Be an Amazon! Don’t ever give up your power! Also, is Dumbledore considered God/God-like?

A3S7: So funny! Ron, Hermione and the big SURPRISE! Onto the reversals then!

A3S8: Rinse and repeat! Ludo Bagman gets more insufferable every time!

A3S9: Can’t talk! Reading! Shhhhh!

A3S10: It should end here, but isn’t. What’s going on?

A3S10: At least McGonagall’s found herself again!

A3S11: Sons and fathers I tell you! Even when they have a heart to heart, it’s not a heart to heart!

A3S12: Woweee!! I’m a little scared! Hold me!

scary

A3S13: Danger! Run!

A3S14: That scamp Scorpius! So sweet and sincere too! It’s not too early to declare him my favorite, right?

A3S15: I keep wondering, was that scene necessary?

A3S16: It’s all going pear shaped and it’s time for the tables to turn and give us the big reveal! Brace yourself!

A3S17: Why did we have to witness the utter joyless and mundaneness of the Harry Potter kids as grown ups? Even the romance falls flat! Persistent question for this book: WHY?

A3S18: Now you tell us! Actual villain come forth!

A3S19: Oh how the worm turns and how false heroism fails!

A3S20: So confused and confusing and then you realize the utter futility of it all!! Where you just have to stand by and watch!! The horror!

A3S21: Huh! Yes, yes, visually awesome but all hokey prophecies! Very convenient ones!

A4S1:

Again with the undermining real-Hermione! What are they doing?

Fatalistic much? Has a few resonances though. Makes you care, in a despairing way.

A4S2: Back to where it all started! Did they have to? I’m tired!

A4S3: A-quivering!!? Who talks like that? Who puts a word like that into a teenage boys mouth? Expository scene. No action.

A4S4:

It’s all about loooove!

This is like Han Solo and Princess Leia : “I know.”

What is happening?!?

Draco’s revelation! We totally should have guessed! Clever Hermione!

Still, it all seems futile! Unless—

A4S5: The teen conquering heroes figure out a way!! Will they? WILL THEY?

A4S6: Do they? Huh? Huh? (BTW: Totally implausible bit of magic!)

A4S7: I caught a typo! I caught a typo! (My editor’s heart is so happy right now!)

A4S8: Uf! How much Deus Ex Machina can a story sustain?

A4S9:

Will there be some resolution to the storm in the teacup?

Ginny figures it out! At least someone’s thinking!

A4S10: Surprise! Disguise! Will it work? Can it ever be so simple?

A4S11:

Passable performance there as the epitome of eeeevil! Lots of action!

Question: How can the Malfoys not know anything about a child born in Malfoy Manor??

A resolution with no empathy at all.

A4S12: They could and should have changed it all but instead they still stood there! And it’s heartbreaking! I need a cuddle! #WhereIsMyLiveTeddyBear

A4S13: I can’t even!

A4S14: Back to the status quo of cute teens! Also, what’s with all these self-conscious hugs? And have you noticed there’s  no cute British slang at all? No ‘git’, etc. I miss that! #GiveMeTheBooksAnyDay

A4S15: Ah! The proper heart to heart! Love wins the day! Sweet.

sweet

Slightly mawkish but sweet too. Stop being cynical!

 ~~*~~

 So there you have it, the kids had a romp and we said hello to most everyone and move forward an inch. Huge plus: Scorpius is altogether adorable! I’d read more about him in a shot. This one? Maybe I’ll read it once more. In a calmer frame of mind.

Should you read it?

It has pros and cons the play, the books are definitely better. Read it if you want to revisit the world and catch up with the grown-up gang and the next generation. 

Read and Review My New Book?

reading

I announced my new book on the website yesterday! Yay! 🙂

It is called ‘Broken Shadows‘ – a collection of 12 curated short stories.

Would you like to read and review Broken Shadows?

Just click here! 🙂

Celebrating A Hundred Posts On Light Under Shadow!

celebration-100

It’s been quite a ride, hasn’t it? Started as a way to feel creative, like me again, Light Under Shadow was originally called ‘From Deep Under The Shadows’; exactly what I felt like, that I was hidden somewhere in shadow.

From tentative beginnings to finding validation for being all that I can be, to this amazing milestone, of a 100 blog posts! It’s been a blessing to be a part of the WordPress blogging community for all these years!

I want to thank you for daily doses of inspiration and soulfulness and for the amazing support you have shown this whimsical little blog of mine.

Let’s take a walk down memory lane with a recap of a few noteworthy posts:

3 Most Visited:

Amazing Series

Waterfall of Overflowing Flowers

earth spirit

3 Most ‘Liked’

The Flickering Light Of Hope

The Circular Thoughts of My Writing Mind

The Surprise Sunshine Song

3 Most Commented:

A Beautiful Send-off From the Bengal Sky

Question For You

poetry….

A Few Personal Favorites:

A Photographic Memory (A Flash Fiction Piece)

Why I Don’t Write Good

Since… [A Short, Fictional Poem]

Dream

To-

I hope to see you here for the next hundred posts! 🙂

Comfort Reading

Comfort Reading

Comfort Reading

When I’m stressed or sad or I want to soften my sense of self,  I read Eva Ibbotson and her books for grown-ups and sometimes her kid’s books as well.

When I want to regain my sense of humor and buoyancy, I read the inimitable Terry Pratchett and his Discworld books.

I call this comfort reading.

And as I wander into another round of comfort reading, I started wondering about this  phenomenon. So here’s a question for you:

Do you practice comfort reading too? Is there a specific book or author you turn to?

Countering Digital Noise With Books

Countering Digital Noise

Countering Digital Noise

If your mind is buzzing with digital noise, just pick-up a physical book and start reading. Paper Books promote peace.

The combination of the soothing smell of the book and the serene non-glowing pages with gloriously static letters will start to imperceptibly calm you down. You’ll notice your need for digital stimulation plateauing and then waning. Your heart and mind will stop racing and the words of the book will start-up a steady rhythm of deep, meaningful cognition in your system.

If you read a paper book each day, for at least 30 uninterrupted, silent minutes, you’ll equip yourself to deal with and even thrive in the digital deluge.

Turn the Page

Turn the page

And see a star

Bid it ‘bye

And turn again

 

The world folds

Into slow

Will you catch?

 

In me there was light

The stars kept their pretty patterns

I lost.

 

Perhaps like you there should have been rage.

5 Life-Changing Novellas

The wonder that is Jonathan Livingston Seagull

The wonder that is Jonathan Livingston Seagull
Photo Credit: Wikipedia

 

There is increasing debate and interest around novellas. Which to me is wonderful news.

Some interesting viewpoints can be found in the articles: Ebooks Breathe New Life Into Novellas and Paris Literary Prize Celebrates Unique Art of the Novella.

This reminded me of a few amazing novellas that I absolutely love.

These books have transformative powers!

They are:

  1. Jonathan Livingston Seagull : A tale of a transcendent seagull in search of excellence.
  2. The Little Prince : The heartbreaking, mesmerizing, soul-giving account of a stranded pilot who meets an intergalactic traveler in the Sahara Desert.
  3. The Old Man and the Sea : Dignity and perseverance exemplified.
  4. Mrs Dalloway : That masterpiece of one day in the life of Clarissa Dalloway.
  5. The Ordinary Princess : The simplest and sweetest love story!

And a special mention for The Alchemist : a wonderful metaphor!

I do hope that we see more and more amazing novellas being published.

What’s your favorite novella?

 

A Wish

 

Afloat on the Ocean of Books

Afloat on the Ocean of Books by Radhika Mukherjee

Lots of books, that’s all I wish for from life.

To read and read and read.

And fill-up with words and ideas and maybe – wisdom?

 

In the summer-scorch a cool book on logic or something light and breezy.

In cold, cold winter – a book like hot stew – engulfing me in the gumbo of life.

The rains are for life-giving lazy books of love and philosophy.

In spring I’ll start books of growth and renewal – new genres untouched.

 

And in the in-between times think of all the new skills and languages encased in books!

This decade of my life is dedicated to books.

Reading and learning and just a little doing.

 

P.S.: And watching all the dance movies ever made! 🙂

What about you?

Amazing Series

A look at the best fiction series that I have read –


1. The Discworld Series by Terry Pratchett

The most spectacular series ever from the grand seigneur of fantasy fiction. A world crafted and maintained with care over more than 30 books. With each one fresh, vibrant, and insightful — some subtle nugget of genius hidden in plain sight. Each book is a delight.

2. The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper

This iconic series makes the light / dark conflict tangible with layers of complexity and historical references intertwined with the everyday world of Will Stanton who we first see as an 11-year-old boy — awakening to his powers. Simply and beautifully written.

3. The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan (Being continued by Brandon Sanderson)

Words fall short in describing this 13 part monolith of literary achievement. One of my aims is to finish reading all the books in this epic saga!

4. His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman

This is the series from which the movie ‘The Golden Compass’ was made.  It’s a rollicking adventure with an interesting take on theology and the soul. There is also a very tender adolescent love story there, against an apocalyptic background.

5. The Once and Future King by T. H. White

This is sheer delight. The Arthurian legend infused with whimsical magic and a particularly English charm. This is the version I always keep in my mind. This Merlin and all that surrounds him, is absolutely delightful.

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Books that Shape You

This is my preliminary list: (Just a snapshot!)

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earth spirit

On the Space-Highway car,
In a galaxy afar,
I met a girl with sparkling, swirling hair;
Through her heart, a gaping tear
And she asked me, “Where do you come from darlin’,
From where do you bring such pain?”

I pointed to a curved blue plain.
In the dark,
I pointed to a killing, burning plain.
From whence; everyday, everyday
Her heart would make a little more way
For the monsters to hide in.

For the monsters to dissolve,
Frightened at their own resolve.

And the girl’s eyes would tear
And the tear in her heart would despair.
–There was very little space left……..

And still, she said to me, “Darlin’ give ME your hurt,
Let me soothe your wrinkled soul;
On me it’ll take a smaller toll.

“Because, darlin’, I too am fled,
I left my world,
My loves,
And all my selves.
I’m going again to find myself;
Far from where I only bled.

“Oh darlin’, yes! Will you come with me?
Come with me to the new Rainbow Tree?
I hear they’re giving out planets there,
Lets go and grab a front-row chair!
And this time, to them I’ll say,
‘My purity, please, do not betray!?’

“Will it be worth it, do you think?
Or would you like, to simply float awhile,
– Waiting for eventuality to smile?……….”

And I – I suddenly understood:
Looking at the browns and greens,
In her blue-white hair.


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Ms. Ibbotson the Great!


Sometimes, the importance of simplicity, combined with beauty cannot be overstated. I have read quite a few books by Eva Ibbotson now. All of her grown-up books and some meant for children. In each book she has brought to my hazy turmoil, my dusty soul – a sense of peace. A mental deep-deep breath of fresh, cool snow-touched air. She writes with such kindness and profundity that you want to be there forever – in the world narrated by her. Even the lost, crumbling worlds.

I also know, how does she know so much? In one book, it’s all music – Opera, Motzart, piano concertos. In another – biology. Then you have the Russians, the Austrians and of course, her favourite – Vienna and the Amazon. ( This is not an exhaustive list.)  I am lost, in happy, un-jealous admiration because she has enriched my life so much.

I love the fact that though her adult fiction are primarily romances, her heroines are special. There is no talentless, awestruck twit without wit or sparkle swept away by the charismatic uber-man. Each of her heroines have some talent or quality which makes them special. Some amazing intelligence of mind or spirit, combines with such a breath of heart! Her heroes too, are cut from the same cloth.

There have been very few authors in the last few years who have had such a kind effect on me. This is in the nature of public thank you note, to Eva; who celebrates the quiet way. I hope that there will be some more books from her, and my visits to the book store that much rewarding.

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Reading – Living

The question is, when your one particular talent is reading fiction, what do you do with your life? You are no good as a critic, since you love to simply flow with the writer’s thought like a leaf in a stream, meandering. When you tried to take up the study of literature, you cringed; thinking Deconstruction is the same is Destruction.

You think, I should do this too, I should write, I should be the one making people feel that the paper world is better, higher, brighter, smarter than the real world. Then you find out, it is hard work! It is mind-breaking work. It is work where self-esteem lies entirely upon fortuitous thoughts. Where you have 5 am highs but more often 2 pm lows. Your mind races all the time. Not one thought you have is spared scrutiny. You analyse for readability and suitability. Your mind is your office. There is no escape.  Not to mention your bank account woes dance in tandem with your writer’s block.

What do you do then? How do you just read, read and read and still be able to build a life? Is there some new magic profession out there where you can?

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