on Sep. 15, 2012 :
Opening with the lines “It was awfully quiet in his head”, Neha Yazmin’s novel grips you from start to finish. Who is he, you ask? Jamie York, an aspiring singer-songwriter from East London. Suffering with a severe case of writer’s block, he has become introverted and cuts himself off from the world. That is, until one day he sees Mukti by the needle sculpture. He senses her watching him and is surprised to discover that song lyrics flood his mind. The silence is broken and he just has to find out why.
But this isn’t your typical love story. His writer’s block might be gone, but Jamie is still haunted by the shadows of his past. And Mukti Khan, a research analyst starting a new job in the city, has a troubled past of her own. Together will they find the strength to come to terms with the past and make a fresh start in life? Or are some problems just too big to overcome?
There are so many things I love about this novel. Jamie’s creativity. Mukti’s determination. Twists and turns with every chapter. But most of all, I love that you get to see the characters grow and develop. When you reach the last page, it feels like you’ve been a long journey with them- but yet it’s a journey that you want to do all over again!
Another thing that I should mention is that there is a playlist! It’s something that many authors are now doing - including Stephanie Meyer, author of the Twilight series - where they share the playlist of songs that inspired the chapters in the book. I think it’s a really cool idea and it adds another dimension to the novel. You get an insight into how Adele’s ‘Chasing Pavements’ and other songs from other artists inspired Neha Yazmin in her writing.
I can’t wait to see what other novels (and playlists!) are to come from Neha Yazmin. I recently found out that her second novel is out - ‘Poision Blood’ – so looking forward to reading that next!
(reviewed 65 days after purchase)
on July 20, 2012 :
This first novel by Neha Yazmin was also my first ebook, and I'm glad as it made it easier to read wherever I was, since towards the middle of the book until the end I found it unputdownable. Not to say I didn't enjoy the start, especially the opening prologue.
The story is well told, and a relatively simple one of troubled boy meets troubled girl and how they struggle to overcome their respective pasts and dysfunctional families with the support of one another, but also causing them obstacles to really commit to finding one another. Of course it doesn't all go so smoothly and there are a few twists along the way!
It is a story about love, friendship, family, music, life, destiny and soul mates. Two people who need each other to become their true self.
Neha has a way with descriptions that make the scenes really vivid. I loved the London setting, that London itself becomes a key character in the story. It would not have worked in any other setting!
The recurring themes also come full circle through the course of the book, which I found unfolded beautifully.
I also couldn't finish the review without mentioning the songs (the lead character is a singer!). I enjoyed them all, although in parts I did think there were maybe a few too many - but that in itself was central to the storyline, reflecting key insight into and reflection of the characters and their state of mind. A great mechanism to add to the story telling.
Finally my hidden gem was the QandA with the author at the end which was a nice surprise to allow us to share Neha's experience of writing her first novel.
I look forward to reading some of Neha's other work but hope I don't have to wait too long!
(reviewed 14 days after purchase)