Just a diary thing.

There’s this weird excitement I can’t hold every time I come across diaries or journals even though I’ve never really bothered maintaining thoughts or words on paper. I’m not a paper-person when it comes to writing anything and I personally prefer a keyboard when I’m writing since it becomes easier for me to express. When I’m writing on paper things just seem so confusing and I end up brainstorming and scribbling and re-writing and then scribbling again. To cut a story short, I basically end up drawing which again I’m not very pro at. Keeping a personal diary is pretty old school yet the most efficient way of storing memories and ofcourse venting out the built-up stress and frustration. I don’t think I can maintain a PD; takes a lot of discipline to keep one. Its not like a rule of thumb to pen down everything in it everyday but then what’s the point of keeping it? I fancy individuals who jot down minutest details in their notebooks or journals or diaries. Too bad I’m not very good at this diary thing.

Are you a keyboard person like I am? Or do you prefer writing on paper?

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Review: Angels & Demons

Author: Dan Brown

Genre: Crime fiction

Pages: 620

Ratings: 5/5

 

I WOULD HAVE LOVED THE BOOK HAD THERE NOT BEEN A SPOILER FOR ME.

Okay, now that I have this out of my system I’d like to say that Angels & Demons has got to be the best thriller book I have come across in a very long time. (The Millennium Trilogy, still topping the list). 

A deadly albeit powerful anti-matter has been hidden somewhere in the vaults of Vatican City which is destructive and can literally blow off Rome from the face of the Earth. Robert Langdon, a Harvard symbologist is summoned by CERN to identify the inhuman death of the brilliant scientist Leonardo Vetra who has on his chest an Illuminati symbol seared brutally. He is assisted by his daughter Vittoria Vetra. a renowned Italian scientist,  in decoding anti-matter that completely fuses the theory of science and questions the existence of God. At the same time, a new pope has to be elected in Rome and even before the official ceremony could take place, four cardinals go missing. The illuminati, a secret brotherhood extinct for nearly 400 years, are thought to resurface only to take revenge against the Catholic Church. A precarious hassassin is on a killing spree and his targets are the four cardinals who are mercilessly annihilated by branding their chests with the Illuminati symbols, respectively. Here, starts the quest for searching the lethal anti-matter and finding the lost cardinals.

The plot keeps treading in various directions from OMG moments to really tardy scenes but all in all you’d be glued to it nonetheless. The reason why action-filled novels should be read instead of watching its movie-adaptations is because of the very fact that you get to connect to the characters, their emotions, their dilemmas  and it leaves so much to the imagination. Dan Brown is a commendable writer when it comes to merging religion, symbols and providing the readers with a plethora of facts. Do not go by the number of pages since it is very fast paced and you’d be stopping for breaths. If only Brown could lessen the description. After a certain period it becomes way too much and usually goes over your head.

I read a couple of reviews about Dan Brown’s novels. Most people feel he is a crappy writer and writes shit that he has no idea about. Well, honestly if a book like TWILIGHT gets to be an international bestseller for weeks and also gets the opportunity to torture people with its movie adaptations then Dan Brown did a splendid job at keeping his characters as real as possible and not overdoing it even a bit. Every book has a downside and this novel is no exception.

I’d definitely suggest reading Angels & Demons. Descriptive, Thrilling and captivating.

REVIEW: LOOKING FOR ALASKA

 

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Author: John Green

Pages: 221

Genre: Contemporary YA

Rating: 4.9/5

“Imagining the future is a kind of nostalgia.You spend your whole life stuck in the labyrinth, thinking about how you’ll escape it one day, and how awesome it will be, and imagining that future keeps you going, but you never do it. You just use the future to escape the present.”

Miles Halter leaves his Florida home to attend a boarding school in Alabama only to find himself caught up in a web of emotional conflict, love, heartbreak, guilt, denial and the problems of being a teenager. Miles or better known as ,’Pudge’ by his friends is the protagonist in the story and like every young adult is ignorant and uncertain about things. He is introduced to Alaska a pretty, confused and absolutely mysterious girl by his friend Colonel who also happens to be his roommate. The story starts unfolding slowly and as the layers start peeling itself you’ll find a deep-rooted bond being formed between you and the characters.

Let me just say that John Green is a pretty darn good writer. I say this not only because I can’t get over The Fault In Our Stars but because he hasn’t tried to portray a rosy picture of a typical young love. Rather he’s been pretty bold about showing that teenage life is filled with naive decisions, heart breaks, lots of drinking(LOTS OF IT) and irrational thoughts and actions.

Talking about the plot, Green starts off in a mysterious note. It starts as ‘Before’ and halfway through the story another part begins as,’After’. The former talks about Pudge trying to fit in to the casual life at Culver Creek, his growing affection for Alaska and increasing interest in the subject Religion. A fascinating thing about this novel is the way John has merged religion with the daily human idiosyncrasies.  It is not boring or dull but thought-provoking and inspiring.

To be honest, I found Alaska Young to be very obnoxious and absolutely effed up in the head given her love for drinking, smoking and playing pranks. Not the kind of girl you’d write a novel about. There was a point when I thought she was suffering from a bipolar disorder cause she was like a happy bunny in one second and a cranky hermit in the other. But and there is a big BUT, the unpredictable behavior and the emotional burden that Alaska carries is something and the only thing that will make you like her. Green made sure she had a certain novelty in her that would attract the attention of the readers. I couldn’t relate to Alaska Young in any way but that’s just me.

‘How will I ever get out of this labyrinth!”

So what’s the labyrinth?’ I asked her…

That’s the mystery, isn’t it? Is the labyrinth living or dying? Which is he trying to escape- the world or the end of it?”

The novel does not have a sad ending cause the thing that would tear you apart would happen out of nowhere in the middle of the story. I DIDN’T KNOW HOW TO REACT CAUSE IT WAS SO SUDDEN AND CRUEL. Slowly but painfully, I got used to the fact that it was real and what I feared had already taken place. The story does not lose its essence and purity right till the end. John Green always leaves so much to ponder.

Pudge, on the other hand, loves to know and learn about the last words of eminent personalities. Like the words or sentences they spoke after which they went straight to hell/heaven. HOW COOL IS THAT.  He, Miles Halter, is in search of a GREAT PERHAPS. Something extra-ordinary, a huge break, a new outlook on life.

“Thomas Edison’s last words were ‘It’s very beautiful over there’. I don’t know where there is, but I believe it’s somewhere, and I hope it’s beautiful.” 

 

It is only when the,’AFTER’ starts that the story becomes excruciatingly painful as it showcases life when you lose something you love and how you try to cope up with the loss. My expectations after reading TFIOS sky rocketed and I knew I had to lower my expectations.. To my shrill amazement, I wasn’t disappointed. You won’t need tissues while you read this book or a shoulder to cry on but there’s just so much happening, so many feelings and emotions that you’d need a few days to get over the greatness that the book is.

I may die young, but at least I’ll die smart.” 

I guess praising John Green is a helpless attempt. It is like describing why your mother loves you so dearly.

You’re missing out on life, if you miss out on reading Looking For Alaska.

Faith is a funny thing

You know when you were a little kid and you believed in fairy tales? That fantasy of what your life would be – white dress, prince charming who’d carry you away to a castle on a hill. You’d lie in your bed at night and close your eyes and you had complete and utter faith. Santa Claus, the tooth fairy, prince charming –they were so close you could taste them. But eventually you grow up and one day you open your eyes and the fairy tale disappears. Most people turn to the things and people they can trust. But the thing is, it’s hard to let go of that fairy tale entirely because almost everyone has that smallest bit of hope and faith that one day they would open their eyes and it would all come true.

At the end of the day, faith is a funny thing. It turns up when you don’t really expect it. Its like one day you realize that the fairy tale may be slightly different than you dreamed. The castle, well, it may not be a castle. And its not so important, happy ever after, just that its happy right now. See once in a while, once in a blue moon, people will surprise you, and once in a while people may even take your breath away.

The above mentioned paragraphs have been taken from my favorite TV show, ‘Grey’s Anatomy’.

Let’s go, its time to leave

She heard a faint voice calling out to her somewhere from the backyard. She stood up, wiping away the tears that had now formed in her colossal eyes. She had always been an obedient child and listening to her mother was a chore she would never deny even if that meant killing her own desires. She looked back at the place where she had spent her entire childhood. A place which gave her memories that would stay with her throughout her life. She would miss this place. More than that she would miss what she used to be. Going away meant leaving a huge part of herself behind. She was 20 and was no longer the little girl with two pony tails holding her father’s hand whenever they went out for a morning walk. She missed her father. She missed how he used to wake her up in the morning. The world automatically felt like a safer place back then. Her fathers’ warm embrace, his reassuring smile. It made her cry. She cried. Voices being heard outside again. This time she looked back at the photo frames decorated on her study table.. Staring at her father’s picture she realized how much she was like him. How much of her father’s traits were woven into her. She remembered the last time she saw him on his death-bed. He asked her to hold his hands, to not cry, to be strong. She didn’t listen to him. It wasn’t easy. How could she just watch him die? Of all things that happened to her watching her father go through excruciating pain had killed her. Mentally, she couldn’t revert to being herself ever again. She had no friends to rely on. Being the introvert kind, girls found her weird, some even went on to say she was retarded. Well, maybe she was different.

She looked at the picture of herself and her father of a breathtaking trip. She was 15 at that time and considering her love for adventure her father had taken her for bungee jumping. How she had screamed her lungs out at the sight of it. She smiled a half-smile, reminiscing the beautiful day. Tears falling down. She kept the photo back, turned towards her cupboard. She took out a cardboard box which had her father’s possessions hidden. Her mother was heartbroken and depressed after her father died and rarely kept a track of their only daughter. She was there physically but in reality she had lost her mother that very same day her father had left them. She had silently taken all his belongings and never mentioned anything about this to anyone. In it were photographs of their vacations to various places, his unusually weird hat which used to be the center of all her jokes. His watch, given to him by her on his last birthday, a locket which had both of their picture and his gun. A gun used by him as protection. She held it up in her hands, staring at it with hope and a way to escape. She took a deep breath, bought the gun closer to her forehead, her breath increasing by every second, she thought about her father once again. How happy she would be sitting right next to him, teasing him about his hat.. This made her smile. She waited for a few minutes to pass by. She waited for someone or something to tell her that what she was doing was right. That there was nothing wrong in it. An image of her father calling out to her revolved around her head. She laughed. The gun still firm on her grips. She made up her mind. She had to pull the trigger. A little pain and then it would end once and for all. Her mother would get infuriated but that didn’t bother her much. She had gotten used to her cold wrath. She wondered what she’d tell her father when they meet, would he be happy? He would be, obviously. She knew he missed her too. Sweat forming in her hands, she once again bought the gun to her head. A loud bang on the door shook her up completely. She kept the gun down, got rid off the cardboard box, wore her sweater and dashed out of the room.

‘I’m sorry for being late, mum. I’m ready, let’s get out of here’ . This time she didn’t look back.

QUOTE OF THE DAY!

“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” 
― Apple Inc.

Favorite Quotes from TFIOS

Here’s a list of some of the quotes i absolutely loved from the book, “The Fault In Our Stars”. Feel free to share some of your favorite quotes from your favorite books!

 

“You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in this world…but you do have some say in who hurts you. I like my choices.” 

 

“Oh, I wouldn’t mind, Hazel Grace. It would be a privilege to have my heart broken by you.” 

 

“I’m a grenade and at some point I’m going to blow up and I would like to minimize the casualties, okay?” 

 

“Much of my life had been devoted to trying not to cry in front of people who loved me, so I knew what Augustus was doing. You clench your teeth. You look up. You tell yourself that if they see you cry, it will hurt them, and you will be nothing but a Sadness in their lives, and you must not become a mere sadness, so you will not cry, and you say all of this to yourself while looking up at the ceiling, and then you swallow even though your throat does not want to close and you look at the person who loves you and smile.” 

 

“But I believe in true love, you know? I don’t believe that everybody gets to keep their eyes or not get sick or whatever, but everybody should have true love, and it should last at least as long as your life does.”

 

“there is no shortage of fault to be found amid our stars” 

 

“Sometimes people don’t understand the promises they’re making when they make them.” 

 

“You say you’re not special because the world doesn’t know about you, but that’s an insult to me. I know about you.” 

 

“You get all these friends just when you don’t need friends anymore.” 

 

“the world wasn’t made for us, we were made for the world” 

 

“Funerals…are for the living.” 

 

“My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.” 

 

“There will come a time when all of us are dead. All of us. There will come a time when there are no human beings remaining to remember that anyone ever existed or that our species ever did anything. There will be no one left to remember Aristotle or Cleopatra, let alone you. Everything that we did and built and wrote and thought and discovered will be forgotten and all of this will have been for naught. Maybe that time is coming soon and maybe it is millions of years away, but even if we survive the collapse of our sun, we will not survive forever. There was time before organisms experienced consciousness, and there will be time after. And if the inevitability of human oblivion worries you, I encourage you to ignore it. God knows that’s what everyone else does.” 

 

“Some infinities are bigger than other infinities.” 

 

“Grief does not change you, Hazel. It reveals you.” 

REVIEW: THE FAULT IN OUR STARS

AUTHOR: John Green

PAGES: 316

RATING: 4.9/5

Do you ever read a book and curse yourself for having read the book not because it is ridiculously stupid or absolutely boring but because it is something you know you will never be able to get out of your mind. Yes, I’m here to talk about a book which I completed in 6 hours and which forced me to run a security investigation on the whereabouts of the author cause I wanted to tell him how much I loved the book. Presenting, The Fault in Our Stars by the ever so lovely JOHN GREEN.

I have a thing for bookmarks; I’m sure most of you have a ‘thing’ for million other things. So yes, this book has two bookmarks; one has ‘okay?’ written on it and the other has, ‘okay’ written. I obviously couldn’t understand what okay signified here but half way through the book, ‘okay’ became the signature word for me. And I’ll tell you why.

Unlike most books that are written on a disease as deadly as Cancer, this one speaks of the psyche cancer patients are usually in and trust me when I say this, it is NOT as you imagined. John Green does this mean little thing where he aims directly at the hearts of its readers and makes sure he hits the bull’s eye. The Fault in Our Stars is anything but disappointing.

GET YOUR TISSUE BOXES READY, FELLAS.

Hazel Grace, the protagonist, who wittingly and intelligently narrates her cancer-driven life, hates going to the cancer support group and accuses a fellow-cancer-survivor-friend of ‘ballessness’. The dark and dry humor in the book is something I really enjoyed and it was surprising and a little embarrassing because here I was laughing at the misery of cancer patients. Well, who said good books are easy to find, eh?  Hazel underwent a number of treatments and her tumor has shrunk which has miraculously brought her a few more years to live. A teenage girl with an intelligence level above average, Hazel, loves reading and her favorite book is, ‘An Imperial Affliction’ which she has read a gazillion times. More like a go-to book whenever she finds herself struggling. (Another reason why I love the book is probably because the protagonist loves reading).

Books so special and rare and yours that advertising your affection feels like a betrayal.” 

Not to forget, she spends most of her free time thinking about death.

HAZEL-Whenever you read a cancer booklet or website or whatever, they always list depression among the side-effects of cancer. But, in fact, depression is not a side effect of cancer. Depression is a side effect of dying. (Cancer is also a side effect of dying. Almost everything is, really”

Because no book is ever complete without a charmingly-handsome guy, Augustus Waters enters the plot. He, too, like Hazel has somehow survived cancer but has a prosthetic leg. Blue-eyed, dark colored hair, well-built and once a basketball player, Waters falls for Hazel the minute he sees her. Pretty Bollywood-ish and predictable, though. The innocence and purity of the relationship between Waters and Hazel has been beautifully depicted, both aware of each other’s illnesses, yet finding each other perfect.

I’m in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we’re all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we’ll ever have, and I am in love with you.

The story sails smoothly during the first half of the book and you’d be like,’damn, these cancer kids are tough’. Waters likes smoking, yes, you read it right, he likes smoking BUT the only difference is he likes to keep the unlit cigarette between his teeth and not literally light it. A metaphor he uses to show how a thing that can kill does not have the power to kill, if you don’t allow it to possess your body.

“They don’t kill you unless you light them,” he said as Mom arrived at the curb. “And I’ve never lit one. It’s a metaphor, see: You put the killing thing right between your teeth, but you don’t give it the power to do its killing.” 

In short, a total badass, ‘IN YO FACE’ to cigarettes.

The situations that the characters are in and the ways they tackle them is inspiring and at the same time a little unreal.

Without pain, how could we know joy?’ This is an old argument in the field of thinking about suffering and its stupidity and lack of sophistication could be plumbed for centuries but suffice it to say that the existence of broccoli does not, in any way, affect the taste of chocolate.” 

Towards the end, you start getting a weird sicky feeling about the way things are going to stir and you’d be sitting there screaming your lungs out, yelling, ‘WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT, JOHN GREEN, FOR THE SAKE OF HUMANITY, WHY’. The story has a sad ending which is obvious considering the fact that we’re talking about two teenage kids fighting cancer. A heart-breakingly sad, deplorable, joyless, unfortunate and tragic end.

I am not saying the story is one of a kind. It’s just that the characters in this book are characters you will never find in this universe, ever again.

I, for once, would definitely recommend reading this book; you laugh, you cry and yet in between the heartbreak you come for more.

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