Secret Notes From Iran: Diary Of An Undercover Journalist

Author : Nadim Siraj

Publisher : Leadstart Publishing

Genre : Non Fiction

Pages : 144

Beyond Wonderland Regular

Secret Notes From Iran is the first-person account of a journalist who travelled through Iran, disguised as a casual tourist, during the stormy US-Iran stand-off in the summer of 2017. With Iran now facing the possibility of a full-scale war with the US, the book features critical geopolitical analysis of Iran’s position in the current world order. The reader is taken across the length and breadth of the country, and the iconic Iranian settings serve as venues of illuminating conversations with Iranian locals about their predicament.

The narrative is accompanied by exclusive photographs taken in Tehran, Shiraz, Isfahan, Persepolis, Bandar Abbas and several other locations. The book comprises revealing first-hand observations, analyses of oil politics, a heady dose of war talk, a close look at sensitive social issues, and powerful interviews of world-renowned geopolitical writer and Iran expert, Vijay Prashad, and celebrated anti-hijab Iranian activist and writer, Masih Alinejad.

This book reflects the deeply conflicted times we live in, filled with equal measures of uplifting promise and dangerous portent.

Beyond Wonderland Regular

I’m fascinated by history and when I got the chance to review a book on the history of Iran, I happily agreed. Iran being a controversial country has amazing tourist places and beautiful human beings, but still it is underrated.
The book is a non fiction and is a collection of interviews and experience gathered by an Indian journalist while being on a secret mission to Iran. The book tells us about the historical places in Iran, the wars fought, the treaties signed, the oil reserves and contracts etc. The writer has beautifully organized the different articles giving loads of information and knowledge to the readers.

While reading the book I felt the pain and fear the people of Iran hold in their hearts. The journalist takes us into the geopolitical analysis of the Iran’s position in the current world order.
Their are exclusive photographs inserted between the articles which makes the reading more interesting.

Overall I enjoyed reading the book. I loved how the author has explained each and everything and his knowledge of Iran is commendable.Explaining the terms like petrodollar etc in an easy way, helped me understanding the topics easily. The interviews are interesting and the war history is heart wrenching. The language is easy but still keep a dictionary neearby. Do pick up this book if you wish to study about Iran in detail.

Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular

*I received a free copy in exchange for an honest and unbiased review*

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Assignment Destruction

Author : Mayank Sehgal

Publisher : Paper Towns

Genre : Fiction

Pages : 210

Beyond Wonderland Regular

Jimmy Bhatia and his friends are your typical young engineers turned IT (un)professionals, stuck in the rat race with no end. They drink, smoke and diss about their managers and leads. Until Jimmy finds a little escape in the form of ‘The Club.’ But when does the universe ever lets you rest and escape? It’s 2008, and the recession hits the economy! Jimmy’s friends lose their job and one by one he starts losing them too. Now it’s up to Jimmy and a few other IT guys to take a stand against the injustice. Their enemy, a bone-crushing white collar job and the depressing corporate slavery environment! But can a few IT guys change how the world works? A story of revolt against the whole industry, this book deals with the youth, their hopes and dreams, friendship, heartbreaks, addiction, suppressed anger, death and a dangerous idea of annihilation! Assignment Destruction: Story of a few IT guys, is a gripping narration of revolution and self-discovery.

Beyond Wonderland Regular

I always wanted to become an engineer but because of my hatred for science I opted for another career. But after seeing the life of an engineer, I feel happy that I chose Commerce 😛 . Also after reading this book I felt bad for engineers and their job timings.

The book is about the life of engineers and how they cope up with their jobs during the time of recession. The story is about Jimmy and his friends who were fully engrossed in their job of 9 to 6 in an IT company. They had no time for their personal lives and were always tired and exhausted due to their work. They worked like slaves and were always bitching about their boss. One day, Jimmy found about a club named ‘ The Club ‘ where similar people enjoyed each other’s company and had a lot of fun. He along with his friend Rohan, joined the club and was enjoying making new friends.

But fate had other plans for him. Their lives fliped upside down when their country was hit by recession. Everyone started losing their jobs including Jimmy’s friends because of which Jimmy started losing his friends. JImmy was physically, mentally and emotionally drained. Being depressed, he sought relief from alcohol.

He along with his other IT friends pledged to fight the injustice met to them. They planned out something dangerous. What is assignment destruction? Can a few it guys change how the world works? Read to find out.

This book is an amazing read. The cover page is interesting and matches well with the plot. The characters were well built and I got connected to them instantly. The emotions were raw and so real.The twists and turns kept me hooked. The language used by the author is easy and understandable . The narration is smooth and the book is well paced. Overall I loved the book. 

Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular


*I received this book from the author in exchange of an honest review.*

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Ashok and the Nine Unknown

Author : Anshul Dupare

Publisher : Rupa Publications

Genre : Historical Fiction

Pages : 224

Beyond Wonderland Regular

You know what, the best revenge will be watching you failing to achieve your dreams… Do what you can, Ashok. The game has just begun!
Ashok wandered amidst the corpses, helplessly, looking like a dead man walking among the dead. The wailing of people who had lost their loved ones on the battlefield cut into his soul, and it was then that he heard a cry for help…
As realization of the devastation of war seeped in, Ashok decided to dedicate his life towards the betterment of society and try his best to prevent any destruction of life. Realizing he could not do so single-handedly, Ashok created a secret society comprising nine chosen members, who were known as the ‘Nine Unknown’, to help preserve knowledge that, in the wrong hands, could be used to destroy humanity.
Little did Ashok know that the safekeeping of such knowledge had a high price to it; that shadows walk amidst us; and that sometimes our actions unspool unimaginable consequences…
The first of two volumes, this book has the power to transform your idea of reality!

Beyond Wonderland Regular

I picked this book because I love reading about history. We all have read about Ashoka in our history books but only till the fact that after Kalinga war he changed and what all he did to help people. But the book goes deeper into the life of Ashoka and his empire.

The book starts with the end of Kalinga War, and how that war affected Ashoka. After the war, Ashoka felt guilty of killing so many people just to conquer the kingdom. His perspective towards people changed and he became a kind king. But amongst the corpses, laid a wounded man Amritya who lost his one eye,two hands and a whole in his stomach and was hell bent on taking revenge on Ashoka for killing his people.

Days went, Years passed, Amritya was now living in the magical city of Mayong, where he was learning magic to kill Ashok. But the city had its own secrets because of which Amritya turned into a monster. Ashoka on the other hand, was stuck in the conspiracy schemed by his own people.

Will Ashok be able to protect himself and his people?

This book is an amazing read. The author has explained his knowledge of history in a very interesting way. The characters were well built. The twists and turns kept me hooked. The language used by the author is easy and understandable . The narration is smooth and the book is well paced. I’m awaiting for it’s sequal now. Overall I loved the book.

Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular


*I received this book from the author in exchange of an honest review.*

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Done With Her

Author : Chirasree Bose

Publisher : Evincepub Publishing 

Genre : Thriller

Pages : 98

Beyond Wonderland Regular

A gripping tale of love, lust, obsession and murder. It’s a kick in the guts. Love that’s raw, lust that’s insane and obsession that’s frantically irresistible. Twists will keep you on the edge while the truth will stab at your subconscious.

Avesh Mathur, a techie stumbles upon the enchanting and sultry Spreeha at work. Every man in his office wants to have her. But he is struck with horror. She happens to resemble a girl from his past. The past that he’d do anything to keep under wraps.

Spreeha lives next door to Avesh. She watches him furtively day and night even though she has a lover. He intrigues her, however, she’s not done with her lover. She wants them both because they remind her of someone. 

What tragedy awaits Avesh? Is the girl he’s madly falling for as beautiful on the inside as on the outside? Will he finally have to face the frightening truth that he’s been stashing for two years?

Beyond Wonderland Regular

A short but a gripping read which will keep you hooked till the last page. Done With Her is a perfect thriller you need to read this summer.
It’s a gripping tale of love, lust, obsession and murder.

Avesh Mathur was attracted to Spreeha at work. Spreeha is all what a guy wants- beautiful, hot, enchanting and what not. Avesh had his eyes set on her. But he was struck with horror when he realized that she resembled someone from his past, the past which is itself a horror.

Later, Avesh noticed that Spreeha was living next to his apartment. They both used to stare at each other, but Avesh was left heartbroken when he got to know that she already had a lover. He was hell bent on owning Spreeha. But suddenly his world broke down – his PAST returned only to take revenge.

The story is a unique one and I loved reading it. Since it’s a small and quick read I was more into the book . The characters were well built. The twists are to die for. The narration is smooth and the book is fast paced. The language used by the author is easy and understandable . The book is a short and a quick read and would definitely not bore you.

Definitely Recommended

Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular

*I received a free copy in exchange for an honest and unbiased review*

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They Go to Sleep

Author : Saugata Chakraborty

Publisher : Notion Press

Genre : Short Stories

Pages : 116

Beyond Wonderland Regular

A young widow of a drug overdose victim disappears from Goa. Three years later, a British National claims to know her whereabouts minutes before departing for London Heathrow. The Police of two states is pressed into a joint manhunt. ‘They Go to Sleep’ is a racy thriller on police procedure and criminal psychology.

In the year 2043, when nobody sends a letter anymore, an unlikely candidate decides to write about his springtime memories that are soon going to be erased. When his identity gets revealed, the impact on several individuals and the society at large assumes epic proportions. ‘A Man of Letters’ is a science fiction with humane emotions at its core.

A promising poet meets his muse on board a train. They share a captivating conversation but forget to ask each other’s name. Will they be able to meet again in an Indian metro? ‘What’s In a Name?’ is a humorous look at everything Bengali: gossip, fish, cutlets and the Kolkata Book Fair.

These three stories are joined by nine equally exhilarating tales of ordinary people and the choices that they make under extraordinary circumstances. The compilation will surely compel the readers to keep their midnight lamps burning.

Beyond Wonderland Regular

The cover of the book and the Title intrigued me to pick this book. Also thriller and mystery genres always excite me. Though I had high expectations from the book, It failed to impress me just because of the writing style.

The book contains 12 unconnecting stories which surprisingly gets interwoven in the end. The stories connect with deep emotions of the reader. Each story is of different genre- thriller, mystery,paranormal etc which will keep you engrossed.

The story is a wonderful compilation of different stories combined into one. Each story convey a lot in few words. The writing style is a bit complicated which will make it hard to read for some readers. The book is definitely for serious readers as I myself had to read it atleast twice to understand what was written in the story.
Here’s a brief review of all stories:

  1. The Man Who Sold His Gods:  It’s a story about a man, smuggling in ancient scriptures and idols of gods, from India in order to earn money.
  2. A Man of letters : A sci-fi story set up in the era of 2043, when letters have almost become extinct. But a man writes letters which finally ends with a great ending. Personally, this one is my favourite story.
  3. It was time: A short read with a paranormal twist, giving you chills.
  4. The Short Lives of Sazia Sultan: It is a story about online love where the guy is mourning over the death of his online lover.
  5. What’s in a name? : A story about two strangers who meet on a trin and instantly feels connected.
  6. The other side: A story which originates from a village, where a man is waiting for the doctor to come as he wants to tell him something.
  7. Aperture: A beautiful story of Kashmir and the struggles Kashmiri’s suffers from through the eyes of a Kashmiri girl.
  8. Rare: A story which depicts the controlling power of a man towards his greed.
  9. Blowing in the wind: narrates the story of a successful couple who are found dead in suspicious conditions.
  10. Six days, seven lives: Story of 7 different people who are interconnected.
  11. They go to sleep: The story of a lady who is on a run for murdering her husband.
  12. Payback : It focuses on the rise and fall in politics.

A lovely book with the elements of thriller,mystery,suspense etc. The author has a very complex writing style which made it difficult for me to enjoy he book. The characters were too much which confused me. The plot confused me a bit so had to read it twice or thrice to understand the story. Surely it was an engaging read but I didn’t quite liked it.

Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular

*I received a free copy in exchange for an honest and unbiased review*

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The New Dewtas: The Rise of Rudra

Author : Suraj Kothiyal Publisher : Leadstart Publishing Genre : Fantasy, Mythology Pages : 223
Beyond Wonderland Regular
Neer, the head priest of the Himalayas, is troubled by the horrifying visions in his dream. On Ganga Maiyya’s behest, he embarks on a journey to the doomed island of Bali. The island, plagued with cyclic torments of Sekala and Neskala and suffering from constant rainfall, faces an imminent danger of drowning in sea. However, Neer’s power was no match for the strong evil forces that kidnapped the king and the queen, activating the volcano of Mt Agung. With the neighboring king of Java on his toes to attack and conquer the struggling island of Bali, will the gritty prince Erlangga, assisted by Neer, be able to save his kingdom? Read to find out how people turn towards the new dewtas introduced by Neer as the end becomes evident and how Eka-dasa-Rudra helps in arousing the most furious energy of this world, Rudra.
Beyond Wonderland Regular
Since I’m a big fan of Fantasy and Mythology, I had to pick up this book. The book is a perfect blend of fantasy and mythology which will keep you hooked till the end. The book follows the journey of Neer, a blue skinned priest from Himalayas, who was going to The Bali Island to save the king and his people. Neer had a magical stone which helped him remain healthy and he had dreams about future which helped him resolve the problems before hand. Once He had a dream about the Bali Island and how it was cursed by an evil witch named Rangda and then he set on a journey to protect the people. While travelling to the island, he met Erelangga, the prince of Bali on the ship and discussed the matter with him. He confirmed his prediction and asked the priest to travel with him in order to free their island. Then they both went on a dangerous adventure in order to save their people. But Neer’s powers were no match to the evil witch. Will he be able to save the Balinese from the evil powers? With lots of twists and turns the book is an interesting read. I enjoyed reading the book and the twists and turns kept me hooked to the book till the very end. The story was a unique one with beautifully written characters. The narration was smooth and the book is well paced. The language is easy and understandable. Overall I loved reading the book. Recommended to all those readers who wish to read something different!
Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular
*I received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest and unbiased review*
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Behind the Crimson Tears

Author : Avisek Prasad

Publisher :Blue Rose Publishers

Genre : Fiction

Pages : 232

Beyond Wonderland Regular

“What happens when a helpless son is destined to see his mom, smiling with bruises every day and silently enduring the misery of her marriage with an abusive husband?” “Why a girl marries a guy, who is rich, handsome, charismatic, immensely loving and… a rapist?” “Why a simple, introvert boy gets obsessed with 25 years elder married woman even though he knows that it is unacceptable?” Join Moksh, Alisha, and Vineet in their saga of pain as they turn the dark pages of their dreadful past on a quiet winter night and know how the dice of their destinies rolled in such a way that they eventually ended up with befriending tears, heartbreak, lies and torments, annihilating all their innocence, simplicity and smiles, as the meaning of love, trust and happiness diminishes to something meaningless for them, in the ravaging storm of time.

Beyond Wonderland Regular

The book follows the journey of three friends- Moksh, Alisha, and Vineet , who were depressed and upset from their respective lives. The story revolves around women and how each of them struggles through their lives.

The three friends decided to have a reunion and reminisce their college memories. When they sat together , they had a lot of stuff to talk about- their career, their family, their love lives etc but each one of them was disturbed with their lives.

Moksh was guilty of killing his mother and used to repent his action each and every day. Alisha’s revelation of she being married with a rapist shook Moksh and Vineet. She was deeply in love with her husband but she was disgusted with the fact that he was a rapist. Vineet on the other hand,was having a crush on a woman, 25 years elder to him. Both Moksh and Alisha were surprised as Vineet was a very reserved and shy kinda guy and loving a 25 years elder woman seemed odd to them.

Now the main twist and suspense of the story is: Why did Moksh kill her mother? Why did Alisha married a rapist? and What happened to Vinnet’s love story?

I absolutely loved how the author inserted the twists and turns in the story. I absolutely enjoyed reading the book .The plot is somewhat predictable but the author was able to write it so beautifully. The emotions are raw and so beautifully written. One thing that annoyed me was that the author didn’t focus much on Vineet’s story and I wished to know more about him. The narration is smooth and the book is well paced. But with every turning page the curiosity to read further kept on increasing. The language used by the author is easy and understandable.

Beyond Wonderland Regular
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Beyond Wonderland Regular
Beyond Wonderland Regular

*I received a free copy in exchange for an honest and unbiased review*

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