Thursday, February 28, 2019

Book Review - Once Upon a Reunion: A Romantic Suspense Novel

Almost 3 months back Nithya reached out to us to make us aware of her upcoming book "Once Upon a Reunion: A Romantic Suspense Novel" We checked the book details and found it interesting. On inquiring we found out that the book was under editing at that time. Two weeks back we saw a notification on social media on social media as we have tagged that author for book release. We got our hands on the book within a few hours and started reading it.

Book blurb
Have you ever sat late into the night, going over hundreds of 'what-if' scenarios? 

Have you loved someone to the point of losing your mind? 
Like most Indian women who have loved, lost, and settled for an arranged marriage, Nirmala secretly pines for her ex, Suresh, even as she leads a happy, mostly peaceful life with Sreenivas, her husband. 
Memories of her first love resurface occasionally, disturbing her present life. 
Unable to fully love Sreenivas with the insane intensity she had felt for Suresh, she is conflicted and living in a parallel world, always tormented by the probability of a what-if!
It is at this time that her school friends plan a high school reunion, which Suresh would also be attending. Nirmala sees this as an opportunity to bring a closure to that chapter of her life. But she is torn by the uncertainty and the upheaval this might cause. She fears that her meeting with her ex-boyfriend might ruthlessly tear apart the delicate fabric of her marriage. 
And at the reunion, her world turns on its head.
Suresh is found dead.
Was it suicide? If not, who was the murderer?
Nirmala is crippled by the shock. But blame quickly falls on her as the ex with a motive and before she realizes she is in the police net. 
As mentioned in the blurb, the story is about a married woman, Nirmala, who was living with his husband Sreeniva in Chennai. Her life was going properly when the story started. But later on, 2 major issues happened with her, which is the plot of the story. First 40-50% portion covers her hearlty-nasty ups-downs with her husband. (Her mind kept going to her college time lover Swamy). It was during their new year party she experienced something shockingly. Whether her experience will stop her to attend reunion or not is written in the second half of the book along with mystery solving around her experience.

The story is written with just 5-6 characters. It is visible that writing was done with a clear mindset. A character of Nirmala takes you to an emotional roller-coaster. She is portrayed as a woman who is devoted to her husband but mentally slipped out to Swamy time to time (she would come back to present with guilt)

Some highlights apart from Nimmu a.k.a. Nirmala
  • I like the way mysterious party event was added, that part converted an emotional drama into a suspense drama
  • I like the concept of "The Ritual Stool" It shows a way to avoid conflicts in married life.
  • Easy to follow language and medium pace story ideal for beginners.
  • The only issue I found was the way Sreenu and Swami treated Nirmala during fights. I am not sure but such treatment is not acceptable to the class of people they were shown. Showing woman a trash bag was not liked by me.
Overall a nice short read to lighten your mood. A good companion on trip

  1. Cover - 3/5 (Though the author has taken our advice of changing the cover, we feel it can be improved)
  2. Characters - 4/5 (1 less for random behavior of male)
  3. Overall - 3.5/5
  4. Concept - 3.5/5
Book can be found at - Amazon IndiaAmazon USA
Review from other readers can be found at GoodReads


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