The Sandman-Preludes and Nocturnes (Book 1)




The Sandman Preludes Nocturnes

The Sandman Preludes Nocturnes

The Sandman- Preludes and Nocturnes is a dark fantasy novel, the first book in the Sandman series of graphic novels authored by the Hugo prize awardee Neil Gaiman with the art work contributed by Sam Keith. The Sandman series was the critically acclaimed work by Neil Gaiman that got him established as one of the greatest fantasy writers. Some of his other works are, ‘Good Omens’, co-written with the late author Terry Pratchett, ‘Neverwhere’, ‘Anansi Boys’, etc.

The Sandman, as the title suggests is the story of Morpheus, an endless, more commonly known as Sandman or Dream, the ruler of the dream realm. He is the sibling of the other endless’, Death, Delirium, Destruction, Desire, Despair and Destiny.

Precludes and Nocturnes starts out with the capture of Morpheus by the magician, Roderick Burgess. Burgess with his son, Alex and his occult followers, perform a ritual in hopes of capturing Death, Morpheus’ elder sister in order to bargain for immortality but mistakenly, bind Dream, instead. For decades, Morpheus stays in captivity while humanity suffers with the absence of the ruler of dreams. Eventually, Morpheus breaks out in 1988, after 72 years in captivity, incredibly weakened. The story then takes us through the journey of Sandman, through his quest for revenge and recovery of his totems of power which had been scattered in the duration of his imprisonment.

The story is an incredibly well researched and well written piece of literature. It is a perfect blend of lore and fiction, a must read for all the mythology enthusiasts out there. We come across many popular figures, biblical and fictional like Cain and Abel, ucifer, Beelzebub, John Constantine and urban legends like Dr.Dee, an embodiment of the popular John Dee.

The most incredible part of the graphic novel, which I particularly enjoyed was the last chapter, where the author introduces Death, to the readers. Where most pieces of literature portray Death, personified or otherwise, as a negative character/phenomenon, Neil Gaiman has put forth a different view, something that would make us ponder over our irrational fear of death and that land of the unknown beyond that.

He is of the opinion that Death, like any of us, is just doing her job, a dirty work that no one else is willing to do. While we worship the God who gives life, why do we fear Death? A valid argument against mankind’s notions of life and death.

‘I find myself wondering about humanity,’ he says in the voice of Sandman, ‘Their attitude to my sister’s gift is so strange. Why do they fear the sunless lands? It is as natural to die as it is to be born. But they fear her. Dread her. Feebly they attempt to placate her. They do not love her.’

Precludes and Nocturnes, is a thoroughly enjoyable book, given the reader has interest in the genre and doesn’t have a sensitive stomach. It is certainly one of the most satisfying pieces of literature that I have come across. And like most Gaiman literature, Preludes and Nocturnes is one of a kind.

Sujitha Prabhakar



Paper Towns

Paper Towns

Paper Towns

“The town was paper, but the memories were not.” 

Paper Towns is a mystery, thriller book written by John Green, an American novelist. It was published on October 16, 2008 by Dutton Books. It debuted at number 5 on the New York Times bestseller list for children’s books and was awarded the 2009 Edgar Award for best young-adult novel. . The focus of this book; according to Green is the mystery in which the protagonist Margo Spiegelman has profoundly and consistently been misunderstood by the other main protagonist Quentin Jacobson who sets out to look for her but does not find her, in the sense that he is looking for the wrong person.

Paper Towns takes place in and around a fictional subdivision called Jefferson Park, located in Orlando, Florida. The book opens up with two nine year old children discovering a gruesome dead body that tied Margo and Quentin together for the rest of their childhood. Margo takes up the initiative to find out more the murder which showcases her love for mysteries. The chapter rightly ends with the quote, “Maybe she loved mysteries so much, that she became one.” The next chapter depicts both the protagonists who are now grown up, grown apart, and have found different identities in High School. However, Quentin is in love with Margo who is one of the ‘popular kids,’ very attractive and has lots of friends. Margo one day shows up at Quentin’s room at night and they go on a midnight drive where she sets up pranks to get the people who hurt her which included her boyfriend and her best friend.  That night, Margo, refers to Orlando and their subdivision as a “paper town.” She describes it as “fake” and “not even hard enough to be made of plastic”. The day after their exhilarating journey, Margo goes missing. Quentin believes that Margo has left clues behind for him to comprehend and so he sets out with his friends to find her. In the end, he makes a connection using a map he found searching for her which leads him to discover that Margo has been hiding in a fictional town called Agloe, which was created as a copyright trap by mapmakers. Margo is upset about being found as she did not intend for it to happen. Quentin and his friends are shocked and angry at this reaction. However, Quentin comes to realize that the image he had been creating of Margo was not accurate as it was the show she had put on for everyone else, the role everyone expected her to play. He grows furious at her for wasting their time and worrying her family but, she argues that Quentin just wanted a troubled girl he could save. Ultimately, Quentin comes to accept that it was unfair to expect her to be more than just a person, and that she could not be blamed for being as imperfect as everyone else. The ending of the book is ambiguous and thought provoking. There are always questions that a reader can ask about what happens after the end of a story; there is always more to tell. For me, that’s one of the pleasures of reading.

In my opinion, ‘Paper Towns’ glows with an aura of mystery and a deep significant meaning behind every line. “Nothing ever happens like you imagine it will,” says Margo and this book is proof of that declaration. The theme of this novel is getting wrapped up in the mystery of something, and Quentin was completely taken up by the idea of Margo and the mystery surrounding her even though he had no real relationship with her. Though it may seem to be a novel with a typical storyline, the metaphors go well beyond it. The concept of Paper Towns and people leading Paper lives refers to how we normalize our lives and play out our roles like we’re meant to, not leaving any space for the mystery and thrill. Paper Towns are flimsy and planned; all things are paper thin and paper frail and likewise, are people. Margo wanted to get away from this as she loved mysteries and felt like no one could understand this. She was expected to play out a role in school, the attractive popular girl whose life seems perfect but she could not do this anymore. The strong point of the book are definitely the metaphors as the author connects them beautifully to the unspoken problems like the normalcy of daily life and how it leaves no space for thrill. This book has not disappointed me in any way so I dare to say that it does not have any weak points. The transition of Margo in the way that Quentin sees her is also remarkable. In the first part, he’s viewing Margo very one-dimensionally. She’s paper-thin to him; she is nothing but the object of his affection. In the second part, he’s seeing a girl who’s half there and half not—so he’s thinking about her with more complexity but still not really thinking of her as a human being. In the final part of the novel, his complex imagining reconnects him to her, albeit not in the way he might’ve hoped. “What a treacherous thing to believe that a person is more than a person” says Quentin. I’d recommend this book to anyone who needs a little thrill and wants to get themselves, lost in the pages of a brilliant book.

Nikitha Bibiana Annmarie


Artemis Fowl-Opal Deception

Artemis Fowl

Artemis Fowl

The plot of the book revolves around Artemis fowl a human kid who is rich but is also a master criminal but he got himself with the lower elements police under the surface of the earth. He saved them many times and this book is the fourth book in the series . In this book artemis and his friend captain holly short a faire is fighting against opal a power crazy pixie how was defeated by them earlier has come back with a plot that will destroy the underground people. The story as always is the fight of good against evil and the eventual triumph of the good but the book is a very interesting one it has all the emotions and it is at places very funny. Over all it is a book where a person who has read it once will read it again if he gets a chance to read again.


Alan T Joseph


The Gold Finch

The Gold Finch

The Gold Finch

Theo Decker, the narrator of the story is holed up in an Amsterdam hotel, looking at newspapers written in Dutch, which he can’t understand; he is searching for his name in articles illustrated with pictures of police cars and crime scene tapes. Before any of this is explained, the story moves back 14 years to the day Theo’s mother dies, when he is on the cusp of adolescence. Her death takes place in New York’s Metropolitan Museum, as a consequence of an exploding bomb – mother and son are in separate rooms when the bomb blast occurs, and the descriptions of Theo regaining consciousness in the wreckage, and trying to find his way out of the ripped-apart museum before returning home, expecting to find his mother there, are written in astonishingly gripping prose. Then the novel changes gear and is primarily involved with the dislocation of Theo’s life – a dislocation both emotional and physical. His mother dead, his father long absent, he finds himself living with the Barbours, the family of a school friend. The cold spectre of unknown and unloving grandparents who will eventually become Theo’s guardians hovers over the novel for a time until his father reappears, with his girlfriend Xandra, and takes Theo off to live with him in Las Vegas. The twists and turns in this tale of a motherless boy whose life involves dramatic changes and is peopled with a vast cast of characters makes the story an interesting read.

Once young Theo Decker enters a museum and leaves with a painting. The painting – one that actually exists in the world – is The Goldfinch by Carel Fabritius, a student of Rembrandt’s, who died at the age of 32 when a gunpowder factory near his studio exploded. Almost all his work was destroyed. The Goldfinch is widely considered the finest of the paintings that survived. “Anything we manage to save from history is a miracle,” Theo’s mother says to him, minutes before her death – an idea that runs deep in the veins of the novel. Theo reads in the newspaper that the painting is believed to have been destroyed in the explosion, he chooses to keep quiet about his possession of it – and from here on, he is culpable. As the years go on, both Theo’s attachment to the painting (a thing of beauty, but also a physical connection to one of the last conversations he had with his mother) and his guilt over his continued possession of such a priceless work of art grows. So, too, does his fear of being imprisoned for stealing the object. It should come as no surprise, in a novel that opens with crime scene tapes and exploding museums, that the story of Theo and the painting is a story of betrayal, suspicion, double-dealing and shoot-outs.

The novel isn’t only all action and suspense. Some of its most memorable moments occur in stillness. At the heart of the novel is an evocation of boyhood friendship – that of Theo and Boris, the Ukrainian outsider he meets on his first day of school in Las Vegas. Boris is an unforgettable creation – a thieving, drinking, drug-taking teenager who lights up each page he is on, even as he leads Theo into a world of excess.

Plot and character and fine prose is what you can see in this interesting tale and as the author aptly puts it, this is where you will find “a rainbow edge … where all art exists, and all magic. And … all love.”

Vishwas A Reddy


The Maze Runner

The Maze Ruuner

The Maze Ruuner

The Maze Runner is a post-apocalyptic science fiction trilogy written by James Dashner. It is a young adult dystopian novel published by Delacorte Press in 2009. James Dashner is best known for his youth fiction series particularly The 13th Reality and The Maze Runner. His work is typically within the adventure, survival and science-fiction genres. The book is the first in The Maze Runner trilogy. It precedes The Scorch Trials and The Death Cure.

Thomas, the teenage protagonist finds himself in an elevator with no memory of his past except for his name. He is welcomed into the Glade, a part of the maze in which they live, by a group of teenage boys who only remember their names. He later discovers that the Glade is surrounded by high stone walls that open during the day and close at sunset. It separates the Glade from the maze and protects the ‘Gladers’ from fearful part animal, part mechanical lethal creatures called Grievers. Thomas learns that the several walls in the maze shift daily and that a group of brave and fast boys called the Runners try to track the movement of these walls by running through it and trying to find an exit while struggling to return before sunset. Despite his lack of memory, he feels a sense of familiarity and the strong urge to be a Runner. After Thomas’s arrival, a girl, Teresa is delivered into the Glade and immediately goes into a coma. Her arrival triggers a change in the entire maze that makes it harder for the boys to live in the Glade. Thomas eventually becomes a Runner but can’t crack the maze. In an act of desperation, Thomas gets stung by a Griever and goes through a process called changing which brings back some memories of his past. Eventually they make it out of the maze and find themselves as subjects being studied under some experiment conducted by a group called WICKED. They are ‘rescued’ by some gunmen but were they actually rescued or was this just another experiment is what the author leaves us to ponder about.

Friendship, persistency, bravery and death are the main themes of the book. Without a strong sense of friendship and trust among each other, the Gladers wouldn’t be able to survive. The closest bond, however, is between Thomas and Teresa that remains largely unexplored. Despite a few comforts that the Gladers have managed to establish, the Glade and the maze carry a specter of death that lingers from the start of book until the end.

The Maze Runner is abrilliant cryptic book. It keeps you hooked from the start and leaves you pondering about what is going to happen next. Filled with mystery, adventure and thrill and with its interesting characters and mysterious dystopian world, this book is extremely hard to put down and a must read for all the young readers out there.


Larissa Saldanha



Little Women

Little Women

Little Women

Compassion, sacrifice, love, affection, respect and poverty come together in Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel, Little Women, published in the year 1869. The novel follows the lives of four sisters―Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy March―detailing their passage from childhood to womanhood, and is loosely based on the author and her three sisters. The novel addressed three major themes: “domesticity, work, and true love, all of them interdependent and each necessary to the achievement of its heroine’s individual identity. It is a coming -of-age story which focuses on the growth of the protagonist from youth to adulthood.  It is a novel of formation and education.

Based on Louise May Alcott’s childhood, this lively portrait of nineteenth-century family life possesses a lasting vitality that has endeared it to generations of readers. The command of language is impressive. She writes complex, balanced sentences and uses advanced vocabulary without making it difficult to understand. The book has been read as a family drama that validates virtue over wealth, but also as a means of escaping that life by women who knew its gender constraints only too well.

This splendid book is overflowing with heart-warming tales of family life, making do in the midst of poverty, and working through life’s hardships together. We hear of the classic incident in which Jo burns Meg’s hair, Beth’s special gift from old Mr. Laurence, Amy’s twenty-four delicious pickled limes.

At the end of each chapter, Marmee is there to help the girls rejoice in their triumphs and learn from their mistakes. When Marmee leaves to tend to an ill Father in Washington, the girls take up their additional responsibilities with good will, desiring to do all they can to help.
The story takes a more concise and serious tone in the second half, dwelling on the four girls as they become grown women. There are marriages, trips, and touches of tragedy, making it more solemn and mature.

I think it is one of the most wholesome and wonderful books for girls that I have ever read. It is engaging and entertaining. The lives of the girls are portrayed realistically and the novel does not include any violence or inappropriate content.

Anusha V Tallam 



Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

I am doing a book review on “Diary Of A Wimpy Kid” written by Jeff Kenny. Jeff Kenny is on outline game developer and designer. He was born in 1971 in Maryland and attended the University of Maryland in the early 1990’s. He wanted to be a newspaper cartoonist, but he ended up becoming a children’s author because he wasn’t able to get his comics syndicated.

There are eight books in Diary Of A Wimpy Kid series and two additional series (The Wimpy Kid-Do It Yourself and The Wimpy Kid-Movie Diary). The series started off online on in 2004 and made its print in April 2007. The book was published by Harry N. Abrahams Inc. The Diary Of A Wimpy Kid became the New York Times best seller as soon as it was released.

The main character in this book is Greg Heffley. The other main characters are Rowley (Greg’s friend), Rodrick (Greg’s elder brother), Manny (Greg’s younger friend), Greg’s mom and Greg’s dad. This basically tells about a guy who has his own problems, fun time and bad time.etc.

The book is written in a way which shows as Greg writing a journal about him. Greg writes this journal because he thinks he might become a famous guy and he can just sell his journal instead of giving his interview when people ask for it. He starts it off with the middle school scenery. He felt that grade levels should be based on height and not on age. He then says about how he got a friend called Rowley, who stays near Greg’s house and later stops talking with each other due to certain misunderstanding and comes back together in the end. And some stories with his family, neighbours, Halloween day and some school activities comes in between.

This book is done only on the first book in the series of Diary Of A Wimpy Kid. It would be nice to read up the other series of this book. You may feel that this book is very childish. It actually gives a lot of meaning and morals when we start thinking deep into it.

For me, this is the first book which I read apart from my textbooks and some old story books. This book inspired to start reading other books also. Actually this is the only book which I felt like reading. I came to know about this book from many of my friends. In the same way I would like to let you know that, this book is awesome and it is worth reading. It makes you feel more young!!!

Jithin P Philip