Khaas Baat : A Publication for Indian Americans in Florida


Book Reviews By NITISH S. RELE,

The Perplexing Theft of the Jewel in the CrownThe Perplexing Theft of the Jewel in the Crown” (346 pages; $15.99) by Vaseem Khan; published by Redhook (

Readers may recall our review earlier this year of Vaseem Khan’s debut novel “The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra.” On its heels comes this second book in the Baby Ganesh Detective Agency mystery series. This time, retired Inspector Ashwin Chopra along with his wife Poppy are visiting an exhibition of the British Crown Jewels at the Prince of Wales Museum in Mumbai. The renowned diamond, Koh-i-Noor, is part of that crown. Despite tight security, the jewel is stolen from under Chopra’s nose. Inspector Shekhar Garewal, an ex-colleague of Chopra who is arrested for the theft, pleads for help from the now-private detective. And that is when the fun begins. In an overcrowded city where desperate people commit despicable acts, Chopra runs into corrupt politicians and policemen. Before you know it, he has taken the help of Baby Ganesh once again to solve the case. Our kudos go to author Khan for yet another delightful crime mystery novel. It leaves us asking for more in the Baby Ganesh Detective Agency series.

The Yoga of Max’s DiscontentThe Yoga of Max’s Discontent” (326 pages; $26) by Karan Bajaj; published by Riverhead books (

“So if there is birth, age, suffering, sorrow and death, then there must be something that is unborn, un-aging, unailing, sorrowless, and deathless—immortal, as it were. They (yogis) want to find it.” So does Max Pzoras of New York, a successful Wall Street analyst, after a violent street scuffle on a cold December night. Off he goes to battle the freezing cold of the Himalayas and a drought-stricken village in south India, seeking answers: Can yogis walk on water and live for 200 years without getting old? Can a flesh-and-blood man achieve bliss? It’s in an icy Himalayan cave that he puts his physical and spiritual stamina to a risky test. The title of the book is apparently inspired from the Mahabharata as per a character in the book, “In the Bhagavad Gita, Arjuna’s sorrow shows him the path to unite with the universal consciousness. That’s why Bhagavad Gita begins with Arjuna Vishada Yoga, the yoga of Arjuna’s despondency … Your discontent with the world as it is will lead you to your union.” Bajaj, who previously has written “Johnny Gone Down” and “Keep Off the Grass,” is himself a Hatha Yoga teacher and learnt meditation in the Himalayas. Undoubtedly, the author has incorporated his personal experiences in this engaging, convincing and riveting book that is a must-read in our eyes.

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