Recommended Reads: Debut Novels

As a reader and an aspiring writer I have been closely witnessing the changes undergone by the publishing industry in last couple of years. From a time when self publishing was considered a taboo we have finally managed to reach a stage where it no longer is one. Rather it is a matter of choice and one done with ease and pride equally. Though it is believed that self publishing as an option is highly complicated while it is not. On the contrary authors are comfortable owing to the transparency in the whole process of getting published.

I have been reading and reviewing quite a lot of books published on Amazon, many of them debut novels. And that is exactly what inspired me to make this list of works. These debuts according to me are stellar, well written and promising. Needless to add each one of these authors is on my "must read" list.  In today's times an author's job isn't only writing. Now, the author needs to have a social media presence and a strong marketing plan much before the book gets accepted. It is a parallel process to writing a novel. And here, I believe these authors score brownie points. From editing to cover design, from typesetting to marketing these authors have truly become Jack of all trades and master of all too. So without much ado, I present to you my list of favourite debut reads in recent times.

1. The Fragile Thread of Hope by Pankaj Giri

I have managed to write this review long after reading the book because this was one of those books which left me stunned. It was an emotionally draining read but one that was food for soul in every manner.

Narrated through the POV of the primary characters Fiona and Soham this is a heartwrenching tale of love and loss. The characters are not only beautiful they manage to spring to life in those pages and engulf you in their tale like none other. The language is poetic, it just flows and is such a delightful read that there were lines when I stopped reading just to admire the beauty of a sentence. Sample this:

"She caught the crescent moon hanging like a luminous bracket in the coal-black, starry night.

2. Key to my soul by Probal Mazumdar

It has been a long while that I got to read such a refreshing love story. The problem with love stories is that there is not much that you can play around with, the basic plot remains the same cliche. It is the treatment which can set it apart and turn it into a heartwarming tale of love and longing. This book promises to be that.

For a debut author, Probal has done an amazing job in the detailing provided in the story. What narrative! Such wonderful characters who are more than just cardboard cutouts, they seem like an extension of our childhood and youth. I loved the minute details he has liberally sprinkled across the book using the norm of show, don't tell so beautifully. Every scene had the power to take me back to the time when it was actually happening as I grew up with those characters and almost fell in love , just like them. The twists and the turns promises a page turning read to the reader. It is very exciting as the author reveals the whole plot in the end connecting the dots, that is when you exclaim WOW as you realize the magnanimity of his planning. Kudos to him!

3. Anya's Lyric by Nikhil Kumar

What struck me the most about this book was its blurb! That hooked me on enough to say a yes for a book review. And believe me when I say I wasn't disappointed at all. This book is a like a Pandora's box. There is something new waiting to unveil in every new chapter taking the reader by surprise and keeping him on tenterhooks till the end.

If you ask me there is no suspense in it per se which will hold you till the end. But it does have an air of mystery in its narration and that's what holds you till the last word... or maybe even after that. For long after I was done reading this book I couldn't get the story out of my mind. The first few pages and I had to keep it down to attend to something that was urgent. But even those few bits and pieces kept revolving in my head till I finally managed to keep everything aside and read it again, this time till the end in one go.

I like the way the author has built the whole story warming up the reader to the character of Anya, slowly and gradually yet in a firm manner that you seem to have known her for long. After finishing the book you wouldn't feel as if you just finished reading a book. It will feel as if you witnessed a childhood friend growing up before your eyes and you just heard someone narrate her story once again just for the sake of memories.

4. The Devil's Prayer by Luke Gracias


I was elated when the author approached me for a review for his blurb was mind-blowing. It is something that not only piques my interest but also makes me want to grab the book and read it. Unlike my usual habit I didn't finish this book in one reading not because it was boring but because it was so well written that I had to give myself a break to stop my mind from over thinking.

After I was done reading it the first thought that came to my mind was WOW, that was so well written. Though the over all tone of the book has religion at its core because of which a lot of readers might not be able to connect with it. But believe me when I say this book is immensely powerful not only in its words but also in the plot that holds it all completely. It speaks volumes of the author's research and also of the fact that imagination merged with reality can give birth to mind boggling fantasy fiction.

5. On the Open Road by Stuti Changle

Myra wishes to break free of her cubicle.
Kabir wonders what life would be to build on his own.
Sandy drops out of college to work on the next big startup idea.
Ramy inspires millions of his generation on his travel blog - On the Open Road.

On the Open Road - Three Lives. Five Cities. One Startup, revolves around the lives of these restless and dreamy 20-somethings as they battle their inner demons and the societal taboos to live life on their terms. It is an emotional journey of following one’s heart. The journey entails undying friendship, love and loss, happiness and depression, fear and conquest, dreaming and achieving.

Will they be able to embark on the hard yet empowering journey to startup a company? Or succumb to the hardships on their road to freedom?


Are there any debut authors who stole your heart ? Let me know in comments please, would love more recommendations on this. Hope you are not only enjoy reading these wonderful reads but if you are an aspiring writer like me I hope you are also inspired by them.


  1. Thanks for sharing about the authors' first work and for sure it looks interesting. I need to add them to my TBR. Thanks Namrata.

    1. Oh yes each one of them are Vishal. I am so impressed at such lovely debuts. Different genres, unique writing and stellar plots, they have it all.

      Thanks so much for stopping by Vishal, truly appreciate it!

  2. Wow, thank you SO much, Namrata, for including my book on this special list. I'm delighted and truly humbled by your wonderful gesture. Really grateful for your support. :)

    1. Reading your work has been both a pleasure and honour. I would like to wish you all the best for your literary endeavours. :)

    2. Thank you so much for your support and kind wishes.. :)


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