Book Review: Hello, Agnieszka! (Between Two Worlds #2)

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Title:  Hello, Agnieszka! (Between Two Worlds #2)

Author:  E. Journey

 Pages: 275 pages

Plot: A raw tale of early love, rivalry and betrayal.
A passion for music. Her oldest son’s suicide attempt forces Agnieszka to reveal a past she has kept from her children. A young Agnieszka discovers a passion for music upon hearing her grand-aunt Jola, a concert pianist in Poland, give a recital. Jola hones her talent and feeds her dreams of becoming a concert pianist.
Shattered dreams. But real-world problems, thorny relations with a mother tied to her roots and betrayal by lusty Aunt Jola a shatter her dreams.
A 70s love story. Young Agnieszka finds love that renews her hopes for happiness. Sadly, it ends, cut short by forces outside anyone’s control. Sustained by music and memories of her first love, Agnieszka grows and gets a second chance at happiness.

What happens when you have to disclose the past that you were trying to bury to protect your children? Hello, Agnieska the second book in Between Two Worlds series is all about the buried past re-routing itself into the present. In the last book, Hello, My love we see the ups and downs in Elise & Gerg’s relationship. The second book picks up from where we left, but the difference is that the protagonist of this book is Elise’s mother, Agnieska.

Agnieska is forced to reveal her past to her children when her eldest son, Peter tries to commit suicide out of depression and is diagnosed with a genetic disease.   The book takes us through Agniseka’s rough childhood, her tough relationship with her mother. She finds herself drawn to becoming a pianist when she hears her aunt Jola play and playing the piano becomes her only comfort through her rough days.

The story is poignant and churns a lot of emotions in the reader. Agnieska comes across as a very strong character, making her and inspiration for turning around things in life. She is an epitome of strength and determination. The narration is evocative and I loved this book much more than the first one.

This book is a tale about heartbreaks, rough childhood, loving and losing, hitting the rock bottom and learning to rise again.

Rating: 4.5/5

PS: – Thanks to the author for sending a copy of the book for an honest review.

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Book Review: The House Of the Soul: A Novel

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Title: The House Of the Soul: A Novel

Author: Annie Dawson

Pages: 325 pages

Plot: Homemaker Ella Casey is circling the middle-age drain. Her once adventurous life is now measured in loads of laundry, her grand dreams of changing the world diluted with each rinse cycle. When she flies to the enchanting California estate of her best friend Teri for a Peace Corps reunion, the accomplishments of her peers threaten to soak up the last drops of Ella’s floundering self-esteem.

Teri Flores is everything Ella is not: glamorous, wealthy, and fearless. Her sprawling mansion, La Casa Del Alma, serves as both artists’ retreat and modern day salon to Teri’s eclectic entourage. Teri entertains her guests with lavish meals, outrageous activities, and impassioned debates, but the weekend sours when old grievances mix with new ambitions.

As past and present collide, Ella struggles to redefine herself, but will her growing need to validate her life end up destroying it?

THE HOUSE OF THE SOUL is a journey of love, loss, and friendship, and a treasure map for anyone brave enough to embark on the precarious voyage of self-discovery.

Once in a while we all review the choices we have made in our lives and a lot of ‘what ifs’ pop up in our head. Our protagonist Ella is no different. Ella is a mother of two boys, married to her soul mate and also was a Peace Corps volunteer in Ghana. Ella had an unfulfilled dream of making a difference to the world. A strong urge to live her dream comes back gushing in after decades when she meets her Peace Corps friends at a reunion at Teri, her best friend’s home in California. This book is about Ella’s evolution as a lover, wife, mother, a Peace Corps volunteer, a friend and more over discovering herself.

The narration switches between the present time and the time Ella spent as a Peace Corps volunteer in Ghana. This did add a flavor to the story but it could have been a bit more fluid in certain areas. My favorite character would be Sanchi. Inspite of experiencing immense pain and suffering in life, she held on and advanced into becoming the beautiful person she was. I must mention the credit worthy thoughts and quotes mentioned in the book which are worth imbibing in our lives.

The two key takeways from the book are firstly, that the grass is always greener on the other side hence we should cherish what we already have. Secondly, a difference can be made in many lives by just doing your bit for the family and dear ones.

The House of Soul is a debut novel that makes a mark! Looking forward to read more books from this author.

Ratings: 4/5

PS: – Thanks to the author for sending a copy of the book for an honest review.

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Travel Dairies- Phuket, Thailand

Calm beaches. Clear skies!

Sand below my feet, wind in my hair.

Snorkeling in coral reef laded sea, floating in the water.

Lying flat glaring into the sky above, water underneath me.

Adventure seeking, fun-loving!

Rocking Nightlife. Lively streets.

Dancing from dusk to dawn at the twilight moon beach parties.

Fashion does at the night markets. Trying out the delicacies.

Visiting the temples, seeking blessings!

Sleepless nights, distressing aroma massages.

Experiencing the beach life at its best!

Filled with new energy, love and gratitude for this marvelous life!

Phuket you have been great to me, Hope to see you again!!!








Book Review: Letters for Scarlet


Title: Letters for Scarlet

Author:  Julie C. Gardner

Pages: 272 pages

Plot: Pain can take a lifetime to heal, but hope lasts even longer…

Corie Harper is twenty-eight years old when she is first visited by a ghost—in the form of a graduation letter she forgot she wrote. Although she spent a decade burying that desperate girl and her regrets, each page resurrects the past, dragging Corie back to a time when all she craved was Scarlet Hinden’s friendship and Tuck Slater’s heart. But she couldn’t keep them both and keep her word.

Scarlet is haunted in her own way, by memories of Corie and of a night that left her wishing she were dead. But Scarlet is not only alive, she’s carrying new life: a baby she never wanted and is terrified to have. Convinced she would be a disastrous mother, she questions whether or not she deserves the love of any man. Especially the father of her child.

“Letters for Scarlet” traces one friendship from deep roots to branches torn by broken promises and loss.

Letters for Scarlet is a women’s fiction novel which brings out the elements of friendship, love, wrecked trust and past mysteries. The book is narrated from two point of views of Corie and Sacrlet; two ex best friends, our main leads. Corie is a school teacher, with a suppressed dream of becoming a writer. She is married to Tuck, a childhood friend of both Corie and Scarlet. Scarlet is a successful lawyer with serious trust issues. The trio; Corie, Scarlet and Tuck were joint by the hip in their early days until the day when Scarlet finds out that Corie and Tucker have feelings for each other and their friendship goes down the drain from there.

Can you imagine wanting to share so much with your best friend and not being able to? Corie feels exactly like that and finds herself guilty for the entire situation. So she starts pouring her heart out by writing letters to Scarlet, which she never posts.

There is a beauty in imperfection of each and every character. They are complex and flawed, making it easy for the reader to empathize with them. Inspite of being transported to the past from time to time, the flow of the book is pretty smooth. The story beyond the final page is open to one’s imagination unless the author decides to come up with a sequel.

This book is poignant tale about friendship that will keep you intrude until the end.

Ratings: 4/5

PS: – Thanks to the author for sending a copy of the book for an honest review.