​BOOK REVIEW OF- Blemishing the Odds

​BOOK REVIEW OF- Blemishing the Odds

BY Harish Penumarthi

Reading level: 10.00+ years

Paperback: 200 pages

Publisher: HALF BAKED BEANS; First Edition (2016)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 9384315508

ISBN-13: 978-9384315504


Say hello to Raghav, an immature, insensitive person who is apathetic about everyone else except himself. His life revolves around his parents and his friends. He is among the bad books of all his Teachers. Until one day, when Trisha, a new entrant; mesmerizes him at the very first glance. He finds a friend, savior, nurturer and an inamorata in her. Just when he thinks that everything has been set out in a picture perfect manner, life throws a series of ghastly surprises at him. Will he change for good or stick to his immature stand of “My Life, my rules” and screw it all up? This tale journeys across all the ups and downs a student could possibly encounter. The transformations that a student may endure, the courage and guts one needs to have in order to dodge all predicaments and eventually sketch the perfect end to all his agonies.


The title gives us a blunt hint that throughout the book we will feel the joy of “SPOILING” the odds. Indeed, in life, we face numerous pre planned circumstances. But we should blemish those to move on. Harish Penumarthi has beautifully crafted the plot in a very lucid style, so that even kids, reading the novel, can find themselves enjoying and at the same time motivating too.

“Life keeps throwing me stones.  And I keep finding the diamonds…”

The novel deals with ups and downs along with the struggle we face very frequently, especially in our school life. For instance, many of us do not take notes in the class. But when the teacher says, “there’s a new girl in the school, who needs the notes, we put up our hands first”. Here too, we have Raghav and Trisha in the same circumstance I mentioned. But the entire story changes if the girl suddenly falls for the person who popped up his hands first.

„So, who is going to help her with the notes and syllabus? ‟ She asked.

I instantly raised my hand volunteering for it. The whole class, including my teacher, started laughing. I looked around, quizzed, not knowing what they were laughing at.

„Manage keeping yourself updated with the notes and syllabus first, and then you can think about others.‟ our teacher admonished.

The class kept laughing. I looked at everyone in disgrace. The new girl had her eyes fixed on me. It seemed as if she was lost in thoughts.

This book is as fun as it is motivating. Though it is filled with humour throughout the book, somewhere between the lines we find it to be inspiring. On many occasions I felt very much related to Raghav, especially in the mischief deeds at school.

We have both family and the friends’ perspective in the novel. In our school life we all used to get beatings and shootings’ from our parents and a tinge of love from our grandparents. From Love, family, emotions till lessons; this book will drive us back to our old golden school life.





I think the author could have made the school life more nostalgic with more memories. Throughout the book, I felt that the plot needed a bit more liveliness to it.

„Well, those were the good old days of my life. I wish I had a time machine. I would

Teleport myself to that age. Everything was magical and challenging. Every second was full of life. Those old days are long gone.‟ I sighed.


I looked straight. My eyes started piling up with tears. I tried to stop the flow but the dams to both my eyes had broken. Malfunctioning makes you look sheepish at times. My lips started frowning. Within no time, tears started rolling down my cheeks and I buried my face in Trisha’s lap and started crying.

„Please don’t go.‟ I begged.
I loved the emotions attached to it


Overall I would like to rate the book 41 on a scale of 50.

4 stars out of 5

Originality of the plot and sub plots- 7/10

Net emotions in the story- 8/10

Usage of words and phrases-9/10

The title, cover and the illustration-9/10

The net impact on the readers- 8/10

Overall, I enjoyed the NOSTALGIC SCHOOL JOURNEY throughout the book.

“The Greek word for “return” is nostos. Algos means “suffering.” So nostalgia is the suffering caused by an unappeased yearning to return.”

But then, you have to


KUDOS TO Harish Penumarthi

Reviewed by-

Sayan Basak


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