From my bookshelf – Jan 2020

Books to be read

For the past couple of years, blogging had taken precedence over everything else, even my reading, and art. So, when I was working on my vision board for 2020 in December, I decided to add READING to my To-Do list.

And, as if on cue, the Universe sent two fabulous books my way:

GLOW, by Vasudha Rai – a Christmas gift by my dear friend, Shalini Baisiwala

HEMANT KARKARE, a daughter’s memoir, by Jui Karkare Navare – a book sent to me by Women’s Web for review.

I began reading these books, simultaneously, in December. It was for the first time that I was reading two books side by side and it felt like a major achievement considering I hadn’t ever done it before.

In January, I hunted for a site that would give me a chance to download and read books for free; sites that have a wide variety of books to read for broke bibliophiles, like me.

Visit here: 7 awesome websites to download PDF books

*Do check out each website thoroughly before selecting your books. 

And, at the beginning of January,  during a ‘free-books’ hunting expedition, I found, to my utter delight, this book of which I had read the first part a couple of years ago:


Around the same time, I also received a book from an author friend. I have shared the review of this book on Goodreads.

THE END OF ROMANCE, by Amitabh Satyam.

As I reflect upon my reading wish-fulfillment, this line from The Alchemist comes to mind:

When you really want something to happen, the whole universe conspires so that your wish comes true.

I had decided to read at least two books per month. I have been reading two books per month since December! Keeping my fingers crossed and hoping this trend continues.


I am sharing today, excerpts from the 3 book reviews, and a little bit about-the-book, The girl who kicked the hornets’ nest.



Hemant Karkare - A daughter's memoir

I am sure every Mumbaikar must know this braveheart who fearlessly faced the 10 terrorists who stormed Mumbai in 2008. On the occasion of the 11th anniversary of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, Jui Navare, the ATS (Anti Terrorism Squad) chief’s daughter, released this book to pay tribute to her father.

Hemant Karkare – A daughter’s memoir shares with us a side of the ATS chief not known to many. The tribute paid to him by his colleagues, seniors, juniors, friends, and relatives makes for an engaging read.

His hobbies, his social welfare activities, the time he spent with his family and friends brings to mind a man, who was not just a brave police officer but also a gentle, kind soul who lived life to its fullest, impressed every person who came in contact with him with his mild demeanor, his love, and his caring personality.

Here’s the entire book review:




Glow, by Vasudha Rai, is a treasure trove of information on kitchen ingredients to be used not only in your diet but also as beauty treatments.

I found the author’s principles a lot along the lines of Rujuta Diwekar’s, and I fell in love with the book from the word go.

Simple, lucid style of explaining each ingredient and its use in our traditions and in modern science, Ms. Rai’s book deserves to find a permanent place in our bookshelves!

Do read the entire review here, on Shalini Baisiwala’s blog: shalzmojo.




The end of romance

The End of Romance is non-fiction. It’s an honest description of the harsh reality we are often blind to. It speaks about patriarchy, feminism, women’s rights and the privileges we enjoy.

It sheds light on crimes against men, which often get overlooked or go unreported.

It is definitely a tough book to read–it was tough for me as a woman to read the author’s views on women and how men are getting a raw deal as far as women’s prIvileges are concerned.

Here’s a detailed review of the book:




The girl who kicked the hornets' nest

A couple of years ago, I read THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO. It was a bit tough, to begin with, but after a few pages, I was riveted by the story of this girl, Lisbeth Salander, who is a computer hacker (my alter ego 😛 ) hired by a journalist to solve the mystery of a missing woman.

The girl who kicked the hornets’ nest sees Lisbeth Salander getting treated in a hospital for a gunshot injury to her brain. She is set to face trial for 3 murders.

She finds help in the form of the journalist (from the earlier book), Mikael Blomkvist, who supports her, protects her from the Swedish Intelligence Agency, who is all set to silence her.

At places, the book can get a tad boring with all the political subplot, with no action taking place amid these pages. Also, I felt lost in the beginning chapters as I couldn’t make head or tail of what was happening. But I soldiered on until I reached the place where some action begins to take shape.

I liked the story because it has a woman at the center of it all, fighting a battle against not only her family but also a system that’s corrupt and dangerous.

Have you read this book? What do you think about it? Have you read the third part, ‘The girl who played with fire’? Please tell me a little about it so I can look for it.


That’s all from me for this month.

See you all in the month of love – February.

Until then, keep smiling!





Published by shilpagupte

Do you know the secret to living a happy life? Eat. Pray. Love. Or, watch what you eat, wish well for all and fill your heart with love! That's precisely what I try to do through my blogs: 'Metanoia', the wellness blogazine, and 'Fictionista', my blog for fiction and non-fiction. Welcome to my virtual homes!

8 thoughts on “From my bookshelf – Jan 2020

  1. The books – Glow and End of Romance interest me most from your list. As you know, I am all for natural ingredients and home remedies when it comes to treating common illnesses and beauty treatments, I am sure this book will find a prominent place on my bookshelf for ready reference. I would like to read End of Romance because it is a non-fiction work on the subject and talks tough.

    Liked by 1 person

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