Undelivered Letters by J Alchem

Title: Undelivered Letters

Author: J Alchem

Publisher: AdProm Media

Date of Publication: 24 October 2017

Genre: Short Story

Rating: 5/5

“If I meet kind people like you, then I’ll learn that too.”

Back in 1993 when letter writing was the norm, an honest and hard-working postman discovers a mistake that unnerves his trustworthiness. Will he be able to race against time and bring closure to all the lives affected?

It is the hope of seeing someone again that makes waiting for them easy. But how can one accept the wait knowing that the one to be waited for will never return? It is under the garb of white lies that a mother consoles her daughter about seeing daddy again. Cathy is also a wife in waiting. An endless waiting. Cathy repeatedly tells her daughter Kara about the return of her dad after his first mountaineering trip with bruises and bandages. But deep down in her heart she knows that he never returned after leaving for his first trek.

“We live in each other, we both will die if we fall apart.” Samuel and Elizabeth are college sweethearts. They spent most of their time together but her father rejects Samuel’s proposal to marry her. They get married against his will. Years later Samuel is convicted of domestic violence and immolation of his wife charged by his father-in-law. Samuel laughs his head off in the court room to the utter shock of his audience. Little do the others know about that day’s accident in the kitchen.

Book thieves run rampage across the city bookstores as more and more books go missing from the shelves. This ‘theft of knowledge’ brings together many detectives as book lovers possessively hoard the remaining ones before all wisdoms runs out. Some call it ‘an act of God’, “a holy happening” or even a “marketing gimmick”. Vigilantes are appointed and prayer meets organised. Famous detective Carl is asked to snoop on the bookstores. In the middle of the night a monstrous dwarf like creature arrives and steals several books. Carl follows him to a jungle where the books are dumped in a large pit. Lenit is thirsty for revenge and he is willing to go to any extreme to hit back at his opponents. But what kind of a revenge is this?

Opening with these little stories in a small town where everyone knows each other, the central protagonists Aron and Sara are bamboozled at the unintended mistake on Aron’s part. A humble postman, Aron forgets to deliver a bunch of letters that are long due. Having discovered them in his old satchel twenty years later gives rise to guilt and anger. He must find the recipients and hand them over their lettered messages. In an effort to offer reconciliation and erase guilt, Aron sets on a journey from door to door to become the ghost writer of their incomplete lives. Though busy with shifting apartments, Aron and Sara make all possible efforts to complete each of the stories as they try to undo their wrong. Buried emotions are rekindled, old friends reunited on paper and un-mourned acquaintances are grieved for heavily as emotions run wild in this heartfelt masterpiece from the critically acclaimed author and winner of StoryMirror Season 1, J Alchem. The stories project a startling realisation that every person we come across has a unique value and that lives of random passers-by are intricately intertwined beyond their own comprehension. Recognising the sensitivity of the situation pushes the couple to help bring the lives of others to a fruitful end. The story within a story within a story framework may seem a little confusing initially but it beautifully describes the brittle circumstances regarding matters of the heart. It also comes with a stark reminder that some mistakes at work are just unaffordable. Aron makes the choice to fulfil his task though he could have easily thrown away the tattered letters. It is this sense of understanding that withholding information is as debauched as cooking up information. Each and every character is well drawn and the subtle shades of their roles are depicted with a distinct finesse in this easy to read book that takes barely an hour to complete. Above all is a brilliantly done book cover that adds to the vintage antiquity of long lost reminiscences about days without technology.

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Native Americans: American History: An Overview of “Native American History” – Your Guide To: Native People, Indians, & Indian History by Louie Ross

Title: Native Americans: American History: An Overview of “Native American History”-Your Guide To: Native People, Indians, & Indian History

Author: Louie Ross

Publisher: Louie Ross

Date of Publication: 30 April 2016

Genre: History

Rating: 4/5

“All who have died are equal”


Most kids in school are taught that Columbus discovered America. But that is far from the reality though it has been taught over and over again. In fact Columbus discovered North America while looking for the Spice Islands thinking that he had reached India. This short guide spans over the entire history of Native Americans beginning with the Clovis-first theory. According to scientists the Clovis migrated south from Siberia because they were following their main food which was mastodons and mammoths. The book clears many long held wrong notions. One such little known fact is that Native Americans were actually a collection of several tribes each with its own set of customs and practices. Religiously based on Animism, they worshipped Nature in its physical forms and attributes. Their peaceful and secluded lives take an upside down turn when greedy foreigners come to invade and capture their land and natural resources that are exploited for goods production leaving a civilisation marred by violent atrocities.

The several tribes include Navajos, Apache, Cherokee and many more. The book details a lot about the art work and culture of each tribe and their doomsday prophecies. Several members of the tribes became a part of the confederacy for civil war as they had animosity towards the federal government for forcing them out of their native lands. However such recruits did face a lot of difficulties and discrimination. Case study of some such recruits is provided in the book that gives deeper details about individual experiences. It is their sense of unified brotherhood that is revealed through all their collaborations. Some famous Native Americans are mentioned in detail who went on to earn greater fame. The trial of tears, the battle of tallushatchee are only to name a few of the conflicts that they had to go through. Some myths are vehemently busted mostly related to Genesis and doomsday predictions including information about skin walkers, mermens and dwarves that revolves around tribal culture. Probably the most interesting part of the book is the final two chapters that include several proverbs relating to Native Americans and their much practiced medicinal techniques. This easy to read book can be enjoyed by readers of all ages.

Informative, fresh and enlightening.

Click the book cover to grab your copy. Happy Reading!