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Book Review – The Other Side by Faraaz Kazi and Vivek Banerjee

Title:
The Other Side.
— Dare to visit alone.

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Authors:
Faraaz Kazi.

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Vivek Banerjee.

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Publisher:
Mahaveer Publishers.

Well it does take quite a bit of courage to visit alone.

Authors Faraaz Kazi and Vivek Banerjee have done a splendid job painting a world of unknown. It is vivid, well described, fascinating and to be honest, quite scary.

The book consists of thirteen short stories of the paranormal.

The book grabs your attention right at the foreword, where the author sets the environment for the rest of the book. Then at the prelude it intrigues the reader even more. The prelude has a very unconventional feel to it. The two authors, Vivek and Faraaz are seen engaging in a conversation which leads to an exchange of paranormal experiences from both parties.

I really enjoyed the prelude because it is so very similar to the conversations we often have in a “gloomy” or “creepy” weather over a cup of tea. The real life experiences shared by the authors are also similar to those that we often hear about now and then.

As far as the thirteen stories are concerned all of them surely did not live up to the expectation. However, most of them were outstanding.

The best thing about the stories is that they are very contemporary. The reader will have no problem in believing the unbelievable. All of the stories are set in the current time and the characters in them enjoy contemporary luxuries and suffer from contemporary issues. They are highly relatable.

Some of the stories like, That fateful night and Possession reminded me of the tales I used to hear from my grandparents as a child, but they are brilliantly remodeled to appeal to the present readers.

The way the authors described the surroundings, the characters and the events in each stories were just brilliant. I could visualize every action, scene by scene. Choice of words was also great.

All of the stories were finely woven so as not to make them predictable. But I feel that the authors could evolve a bit more in this field. Almost all the stories had a brilliant twist towards the end but in some, the twists were clichéd, thus making the story transparent.

I also feel some stories would have been better without the twist. A more straight forward approach to these stories would have enriched the reading pleasure.

The authors could have left a bit more to imagination in some stories (for example, The long weekend and Strangers in the night).

The epilogue was just awesome. It was the perfect ending to the great book, in my opinion. The facts were spot on, the events were spooky (read scary) enough and Bhangarh fort in a moon lit night could not have been better described.

I would also like to give special credit for the quotes before every story; they added a lot of flavor. The selection of quotes was very good, each quote was in some way or the other related to the story that followed.

The cover design was amazing. It reminded me of the opening video of Scooby Doo cartoons! However the illustrations in the stories could have been better.

Overall, The Other Side was quite a fun read, it had all important elements that a book of this genre must have and more. A great effort on behalf of Faraaz Kazi and Vivek Banerjee. Take a bow gentlemen; The Other Side is a job well done.

Ratings:
Overall: 3.5/5

Foreword: 4.5/5
Prelude: 4.5/5

That fateful night: 3.5/5
The long weekend: 4/5
The man who did not fear: 4/5
Strangers in the night: 2/5
The muse comes calling: 3.5/5
The lady in the pub: 3/5
A mother’s love: 2.5/5
Red Bangles: 3.5/5
The Mark of the Beast: 4/5
The Mystery lake: 2/5
Possession: 4.5/5
Unfulfilled Desires: 3/5
Dream Girl: 3.5/5

Epilogue: 4.5/5

Thanks to The Readdicts for the wonderful opportunity.

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