The Writings(#1) – Behold the memories

Tethering her stallion to a highly jutted rock, fogged with the mist in the valleys of Cipla, Firdaus sat down and took a huge sigh of relief. The moments becoming memories, flashes all down to her throat from her eyes. She said to herself, I could’ve done better, ye! She sees the mountains far away located, standing still. The fog is everywhere around her eyes, but the mountain seems clear, clear and strong she murmured. She takes a look at the stallion, tilts her head back a little more so that there is enough rest to her back, against the soddy part of the rock. She slips her hand beneath the rock, put atop the horse’s hooves and whispers, “Are you hungry? Has he given you any food since three days”. He moves back and forth with his silky mane all over the rock, “I think I got the answer”, said Firdaus. “You look like him”, she continued. “Brave with rich looks, charming with gestures and always armoured”,”Did he teach you to be?”, she got more anxious thinking what if she gets an answer. Kneeling forward, she rested her hands on her left ankle, twisting her leg.

Taking the journal out of her vest, Firdaus gasps a thin line of air. She rolls her fingers on the cover of the journal made of leather, hard and strong, rusty. She imagines how he might have been now, seeing her holding his journal, trying to open it. “It would’ve been deadly”, she murmurs with a slight laugh on her face. She remembers how she used to run out of her house every time there was a roadshow from the King’s place. The King, Queen and their beloved son, hopping on a carriage with a stallion at it’s head, running across the villages to greet their people. “I used to wait for the festival, every single time”, she remembers and smile. “Mother hated it when I grew older, so I stopped going. But I never missed asking Esra, how it went. If he saw the prince, everything about the festival, he acted like my spy”, sighs.

The journal reminded her of his tones, his touch, his vocals, his seriousness at the end of the day, sitting down beside the river’s calmness, always finding a spot to jot down every single piece of event that happened during the day. “How hard you would always try to get me into the palace”, she chuckles. “The memories that we created are precious. I don’t think I could’ve survived without them”, speaking with a deeply saddened voice. She runs her finger down on the deeply encrypted letters atop the journal which is clearly distinguished throughout the markings on the cover. “What did I do to lose you? “

“Where are you…”, crying softly, “…Zakir”.

Bookish – Saba Tahir’s An Ember in the Ashes(#1)

I had lost my appetite to read more since 2 years. I still remember those times when days and nights were all one with my head into a book. I do not remember how fast I used to cover them, books after books. I could remember the effect it had though. Getting into the skin of a character, visualising the story with me playing a relatable role, everything was in my head but it felt good. It felt evolutionary every time when I completed a book. But that was 2 years ago. Within these 2 years, I had tried hard to start a book and complete it, but the hardest part was to reach the last page of it. I realise now, all the distractions from social media grew with time. Now, when the world stands still, I did some good amount of research to start with a fantasy book, also choosing fantasy means not getting a hint to put it down, if you’re still, then there’s something wrong with the manuscript.

When I started with ‘An Ember in the Ashes’, initially it felt all brutal but gripping. I couldn’t leave it without turning the next page, every single moment eagerly curious to check what happens to the determined Laia, If the brave soldier Veturius would be able to save himself and the Empire, Would the disciplined soldier Helen sacrifice her love? Everything looked pretty unsettling but thrilling, gripping and nothing to stifle upon. The world created by the author is seemingly made up of Hogwarts’s adventures facing Game of thrones’s brutality building with Hunger Games’s scenes.

I was taken aback when I saw I had reached almost 50% of the book without even realising how long I have been reading, that’s how captivating the book was. Tahir’s writing never disappointed me since I was always looking into a broader picture of the story. This book relies on very strong character development sequences, brutal actions building relations and most importantly a very strong scenic background. Blackcliff school might give you an impression of Hogwarts but once you dwell into the characters, it becomes trivial. There are excerpts where a man demeaning a woman's physicality and the hero defying her is nothing new to read but it gives some weird character building tips to the story. How every story is ruled by a strong villain, this one carries a very strong ruler, The Commandant, who can easily give Cersei Lannister and all other super villains a knock to win.

I loved the fact how shades of a woman are defined with roles, how fear is handled here with regards to death, how humanity can still thrive with moral losses. Power, fear, love, death, everything intertwines in this compelling fantasy series.

“Fear is only your enemy if you allow it to be. Too much fear and you're paralyzed. Too little fear and you're arrogant.”
― Sabaa Tahir, An Ember in the Ashes
Courtesy: Goodreads
“Fear is only your enemy if you allow it to be. Too much fear and you’re paralyzed. Too little fear and you’re arrogant.”
― Sabaa Tahir, An Ember in the Ashes
Courtesy: Goodreads

The moment I completed this book, there was a sigh. A relief, I can never imagine, how blissful it felt for ten seconds. That’s the happiness of completing a task when you start with a goal and that can only happen when your interest aligns with the mission. I am happy for a fact I chose this book where I didn’t regret for a minute. Super excited and eager to start the next one from the series. Whether a beginner to reading or fantasy genre reading, this New York’s bestseller is highly recommended.

Happy Reading 🙂 !

Alice in Quarantine

Down the rabbit hole!

The white little rabbit with a waistcoat warned the year 2020 would become a scam for Alice. Alice follows the white rabbit and ends up in a rabbit hole with buildings and big doors filled with numerous opportunity to grow. Qurantining and self-isolation became more ambitious than dreamy careers and imaginary travels.

There’s no caterpillar asking who Alice is, unless she is dreaming. There’s no Mary Ann mistaking her identity, unless she is imagining. All the curiosity of Alice lies in finding what’s in store for the day next. What Alice does, is to kneel down and find the rabbit passage way which leads to a rat hole and not a wonderland garden. Wearing a tight corset with chest tight, Alice finds stiffness and awkwardness comfortable. Every night, she goes into a kaleidoscope where the world is bright and the moment she figures out the pattern, it shifts. Alice struggles to find that little door but she desires to shrink for anyone to notice. There’s no cake here to help Alice find the key but there’s a little anxiousness to survive.

Alice is stuck in March Hare’s house, where the mad hatter and dormhouse are having tea together perpetually stuck in time forever. She realises the world like March Hare, is stuck forever in doing monotonics. She has become more tired now trying to search a way out of the rabbit hole. She was asked to be on the stand since disobeyed all the “it’s too easy”, “being dramatic”, “stop being lazy”, “everything’ll be alright”, she replies with “How silly” in her head thinking it’s a ‘normal’ everyday.

When the Queen asks “Do you have anxiety ?”, Alice says “Yes”. The Queen demands “Let me win in this game by being more anxious or else I’ll have your head”, Alice tries her best to make her win but it never leaves her. The Queen cries “Off the head!”, just then the trumpet sounds high and ends the imaginary court session. Alice is waiting for a tap on her shoulder, soon to make her realise it’s all real.