Harpreet Singh Makkar – Writer turned Publisher

Harpreet Makkar 280x227


He was just any other author on facebook when I came across him. He had just penned his first novel. The pre-orders began a few days later. And then the book was out for sale. Though I was settled in New Delhi now, he being from my hometown, I was eager to have a look at his book. Before I could place an order for the book, it was decided amongst us that since I was visiting my hometown for a few days, we would meet and he would bring me a copy of his novel. This is how began my journey with ‘The Justified Sin’ and Harpreet Makkar, the author of this novel.

The contact was established on a literary note but as I began to discover him I knew the kind of person and business man he was. He shared his aspirations about his literary career and the kind of fields he wanted to venture into. We talked at length about the kind of publishers we have around, how they rob the author of the charm they have about their writings. The modern day publishers are only out to satisfy themselves by going all out to fulfill their vested interests without caring a fig for the respect of the accuracy of the printed word, let alone being true to their commitments to the authors.

The interactions with him have been few and far between but I have always remembered him as a friend and someone who is there to give you the moral support when needed the most. A while ago he announced his own publishing company, ‘Petals Publishers and Distributors’. Now this was something I almost expected from him and had an inclination that he would do it in a brilliant way. The company has already started churning out some true ‘unputdownable’ books.

I read his novel ‘The Justified Sin’ again recently. And I found the book even more interesting this second time.

To that unknown princess,

Lost in the folds of past…

She was back, yes she was,

With a smile, but a chaos,

What to do, to be lost,

Stay there or to be in past…

  • Harpreet Makkar


About the Book :
What do you call it when three beautiful women come in your life, but you are still single? What if they all, at some point, tried to entice you, but you feel like committing suicide because of loneliness? What do you call it when you made no mistake, but still, you feel guilty as sin?

Jay had a common life until Saloni, Prachi and Vineeta came in his life and changed everything.
At times, he avoided the love that knocked at his door, and when he actually needed it, the same love kicked him.
He betrayed.
He got betrayed.
He rejected.
He got rejected.
From being shot in the back by Prachis father to getting intimate with Vineeta under the influence of alcohol, his life was as spicy as those masala Bollywood movies!
He was getting used to his life, until one night, he decides to jump off a building.


The book not only has an interesting storyline but also the psychological unraveling of the protagonist. The book has enough potential and gives you enough food for thought.

In case someone is still not convinced, I can write another page! But I don’t think that’ll be required! Happy Reading!


Jaipur Literature Festival 2015 – The Show Begins!

JLF 2015

The stalwarts of Indian English poetry are here to deliver the keynote address. The names include Ashok Vajpeyi, Arvind Krishna Mehrotra.  Leading brands, arts organisations and educational institutions have once again supported the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival as sponsors for the 2015 edition, enabling the world-leading literary festival to remain free and open to all. Among the new partners, who have venturd in are Amazon.in, which is here as the Festival’s Official Book Partner. The second new entrant is Rajnigandha that will support the Front Lawns as venue sponsorer.

ZEE is not the only returning partner for 2015, all four of the Festival’s venue sponsors from 2014 and before have again committed to supporting the annual event, pointing to the valuable brand association and visibility provided by partnering with the Festival. Google will be venue sponsor for the Mughal Tent for the fourth year in a row, British Airways, Harvard University’s Mahindra Humanities Centre and Ford will all return for the second year as venue partners for the Baithak, Durbar Hall and Samvad respectively.

The ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival beings with a bang today, that is, 21 January and will continue till 25 January at Hotel Diggi Palace in Jaipur. Confirmed speakers include Nobel laureate V.S.Naipaul, Pulitzer-Prize winning poet Vijay Seshadri and Man Booker Prize winner Eleanor Catton. The Festival is completely free and open to all.

Now that the festival has entered its eighth edition this time, the Royal Diggi Palace continues to be prestigious venue. Did you ever spare a thought as to wherein lies the charm with this palatial host?  The Royal Indian Palace has been hosting JLF since its inception in 2006, and every year greets visitors with its lush green front lawns, steaming morning chai and the pleasant, fresh morning breeze. With deep cultural roots and a history so royal and full of grandeur – the Diggi Palace, makes it the perfect destination to host the most recognized literary minds from across the world.

One of the most anticipated events has charm enough and offers food for thought for all…




Samanvay: Indian Languages Festival 2014

samanvay 2014This time the special emotional touch is that it is a tribute to UR Ananthamurthy, Bipan Chandra, Rajendra Yadav, Nabarun Bhattacharya and Khushwant Singh. Yes, I am talking about ‘Samanvay – IHC Indian Languages’ Festival’. The theme for the festival to be held this year from 6-9 November (2014) is ‘Translations-Transnations’. The festival is expected to cover 20 languages and dialects with more than 90 speakers participating in the 21 sessions. In addition to it there would be 4 evening performances as well.

For the first time, the festival will also host writers from SAARC  countries like Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh etc. From Bangladesh – Fakrul Alam, Syed Shamshul Haque; From Nepal – Benju Sharma; From Sri Lanka – Deepachelvan will be participating.

With this year’s theme being “Translations Transnations” the festival will focus on Indian languages, which have a transnational presence like Bangla, Bhojpuri, Chhattisgarhi, English, Hindi, Konkani, Malayalam, Punjabi and Sanskrit.

The musical performance every evening has an eclectic mix of artist from across the country such as Sufi Singer Mir Mukhtiyar Ali, Naga Folk Music by Testeo Sisters, Abolo Naga, Manyang Kichu and Sepongla Sangtam, Swanand Kirkire and Vidya Shah





Book Review: ‘Love Among the Bookshelves’ by Ruskin Bond

‘Love among the Bookshelves’: Ruskin Bond


Rs. 299

Pages: 185

Ruskin-Bond-2“It wasn’t a bookshop, or a library, or a great-aunt’s hoard of romantic novels that made me a reader; it was the week I spent in a forest rest house, in what is now the Rajaji sanctuary, between Hardwar and Dehradun.”

If looked at a literary way with acute sense of digging out literature from every nook and corner of the world, this statement might be one of the most inspiring sentences that could be used to promote the book culture. Bookshops and libraries are the major sources of books or it might be sheer good luck that one might get good wealth of books from an ancestor.

The book in hand ‘Love among the Bookshelves’ is a compilation of inspiring extracts from the most cherishable books of all times and some of the forgotten classics, which have been stories he grew up with.

Bond as usual has a very interesting style of narrating and connecting things, especially when he tries to relate to the situation that served as a prelude to his ending up reading a particular book. After all, what could be more inspiring than telling the children that he spent all his pocket money in obtaining a particular book and then not being disappointed!

The book is partly Bond’s memoir, partly an anthology. Having written more than five hundred works, Bond is already an established favourite amongst not only children and youth but among adults as well. He has something for every age in each one of his book. The same holds true for this book as well. On the one hand, where this book works towards promoting book culture and serves as an effective source of inspiration for children; on the other hand, it also helps the reader to related to the life and likes of young Bond, who is now one of the most established Indian English authors.

The book is definitely an interesting reading and recommended for all age groups! Happy Reading!

Four Poems: Christopher Barnes


Poem I:

A Tickling Divorce



For Partials (Seal & Protect)

As A Partial Denture Wearer

You Want To Help Protect

Your Remaining Natural Teeth

By Following A Good Oral Care Routine

Every Day.

Using Polygrip For Partials Can Help.


Back-jumped at the elbow-room

Of having the bolt-hole to herself.


“Most will attempt to raise several broods

     Each year”


Finger-wagging…window shopping the calendar’s

Do-nothing blanks.


     “Provided climate conditions allow”

 It’s explicit she’s free as air.

“The breeding season of these birds”

 Mrs. Lother pouts, grins;

The mail packet’s chirruped to the kerb

And the postman also smiles.


By Christopher Barnes, UK

QUOTES: Gene Planker


Poem II:

Sand Fly Bites


Mr. Newberry bleats

Uncoupling eyelids,

On a Tasmanian Devil print bed-slip.


     “The foreigner and the citizen”


A Francis Ford Coppola moon’s PVC framed.


“Migration with a long history of control”


Whirling in Polygresis lamp

Smacks of background – no riddance tonight.


     “Restrictions and punishments previously imposed”


Besides, these small hours tiptoe. Bloat.



Home Baking

Lemon Juice

Made With Pure Lemon Juice

From Concentrate,

Perfect For Pancakes



By Christopher Barnes, UK

QUOTES: Centre On Migration, Policy & Society


Poem III:



Entanglements for Iris, footed all overstepping,

Defaulting to baiting postures.


“In the longer term alcohol is a depressant”


The Credulous Fool plunged into mist-yellow,

A wall of beating time. Twinkling fizz.


“In recent years

     There has been a discernable growth

     In ‘binge drinking”


Clumped on decking, mismarried John was huffed

At how uncannily her eyes

Free-willed from his to hers.



 Boots Pharmaceuticals – Wound Dressings Are Highly Absorbent

And They Have A Low Adherent Surface

Which Means They Do Not Stick To Your Wounds.



  1. Gently Clean The Wound
  2. Apply The Dressing To The Wound.
  3. Secure The Dressing In Place With A Dressing Tape Or Bandage.
  4. Apply Fresh Dressing As Required


By Christopher Barnes, UK

QUOTES: Birmingham City Council


Poem IV:

Grey Days Respite


Cliff Boxer’s dandruff was shoulder-to-shoulder.


“Individuals who tend to disregard and violate

     The rights of others”


Hedge-hop neighbours made wrong-footed dins,

Plonking hands, shedding tools

As fight-spoiling quick-changed to spats.


     “An enduring pattern of experience”


His whys nor wherefores were unflinching

And the embodiment of his better half

Flummoxed the jury.


“Egregious, harmful, or dangerous behaviour”




Coast & Country Holidays

Cottage Or Hotel Breaks In Rural Durham

Northumberland And Durham


Blue Beach Hotel – Amble

Flate Park Hotel – Co. Durham


By Christopher Barnes, UK

QUOTES: Psychology Today