Bookish Witch

Holding On To Love by Ashish Sinha

Book blurb:


When ASHU finds out that his so-called loved ones pampered him only till his father was living, he is heartbroken. After his father’s sudden demise, Ashu is left alone, fighting the world for every small bit of happiness. But he rediscovers love and affection in DISHA, who he meets at a job interview.

Disha is an epitome of love and he finds his true happiness with her. Soon after their marriage, just as they are beginning to relish the little joys of life, Ashu is diagnosed with a fatal disease. The only way out is a transplant, which in itself is a life-threatening surgery.

Will Disha’s overwhelming love, acceptance and sacrifice make the impossible possible?

Holding On To Love is an astonishing true story of Ashu’s will to defeat destiny, backed by Disha’s faith in the power of their love.

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 176

Format: Kindle eBook/Paperback


  • Kindle eBook : 49 INR/$4.99
  • Paperback: 165 INR/$19.83

My Ratings: 3.9/5

This is a story of how keeping up hope and positivity leads to good results. Ashu, the protagonist of the story is suffering from liver failure and will not survive if he doesn’t get a liver transplant soon. This book is his life story of how he survives this terminal illness and what led on to it. Will he get a new liver and does he survive? Read the book to find out. 

What I liked about the book: 

—> Effectively makes the point that out thoughts are what makes us. 

—> Tells us how important it is to have a life companion who stands by our side through physical ailments. 

—> It is an autobiographical tale and yet feels like reading a novel or story, which makes it a good read. 

—> Teaches us that having a good support system in the form of family and friends, matters a lot, especially during financial, emotional and physical upheavals. 

—> We feel empathy towards the protagonist,Ashu, who has lost loved ones at a young age and then had to struggle through a terminal illness himself. 

—> The little tidbits about the importance of liver, provided at the end of each chapter. 

—> The author’s views about dowry and allowing women to be a part of the cremation ceremonies are appreciable. 

What I did not like about the book: 

—> Though I understand that the story is dedicated to the protagonist’s wife, Disha, at times it feels like her character is glorified or that there’s too much focus on just her. 

—> A few paragraphs are repeated, which is a turn off and there some places where the narrative lacks consistency, majorly because it moves back and forth in the timelines, which makes the reading confusing. 

Quotable quotes: 

—> Everyone else has one is not reason enough to get something.

—> Childhood is such a carefree time for those surrounded by loving families. We are fed, clothed, and sheltered, with little awareness of how those provisions are obtained. We often take our parents and family members for granted, thinking they will always be there, and sometimes faulting them when we do not feel loved. But their provision for us is meaningful – it is their very lives that they pour into giving us the things needed in life. The fact that they perform their duties consistently is, in itself, a statement of how much they love us.

—> The tragedies of life can wear down even the most loving relationships; and, for some, the loss of loved ones can make it more difficult to find love in their hearts for others.

—> Many of us, whether from the east or the west, are the product of traditions, of duty, or of responsibility, rather than beloved children of parents who share a loving bond. This can hold us back, if we let it. Life gives us a challenge: Can we view the act of providing basic essentials for our children as a form of deep love?

—> Those of us blessed to survive childhood are no longer confined by our origins. We can choose differently, and there is always hope for a better way to live.

—> To me, these things – having money and food – had just happened. I had never considered exactly how they happened.

—> It is a mistake to stress the importance of studies over the talents demonstrated by a child. How many great cricket players are discouraged in their youth? How many great musicians or artists? Rich families often encourage these things in their children, but we need to find ways to search for hidden talent in middle class families as well, to bring it to light.

—> Death is a difficult thing for anyone to cope with, at any time. But for a youngster, it can be devastating, especially if they lose a parent. Children need their parents; they need love and encouragement; they need their parents to be involved in their lives.

—> I really feel life is a series of waiting rooms. What counts is what we do in those rooms. One of my resolutions going forward is to make better use of precious hours, days and months; contributing to relationships and to the world in ways that will last; ways that will make us all better people. Having a brush with death puts a lot of life into perspective: our time here is short, and we have to make the most of what we have been given.

—> It’s shameful that people are willing to tear each other down, but so unwilling to build up their loved ones. But this seems to be human nature – negatives are glaringly obvious, but positives are often overlooked.

—> Death can come so suddenly, but even when there is prolonged illness, a family can never be prepared for the loss of a loved one

—> Until we savour success, we remain unware of its tanginess. But with every success we count, we become more desperate to achieve yet another, unaware of what success truly is.

—> We only understand the pleasure of being employed in a top-notch company with a high salary. We don’t understand in that moment that there is still a lot to achieve. Our everlasting desire of success has no ends and we always strive to achieve a still better life, compromising with a whole lot. We cut short on the everything – family, relations, our passions, friends and so much else to provide for our fight for constantly changing success. We all run after worldly matters which comfort us. But to be truly happy in life, we have to spare some time for our self. We have to learn to live every moment of our life. We have to count our blessings. Not just this, our behaviour and thoughts towards others will give us immense happiness too. We need to be more contented in our life only then we could be happy. Let’s not stop trying for more happiness and success, but let us learn to balance our life well. We should strive for a better me along with a better life.

—> Each one of has aspirations, but the moment we find it perilous, are we not hesitant to take even the first step? We lose faith very easily sometimes and it shows in different events of our life. Is it not true even when our life is going on well, that we fear for our future. Irrespective of our bright present, we worry about securing an even brighter future. But you know what, every negative thought is like a virus in our life that depletes our energy to perform well. We must have faith in our goals and only then we can bring it to realization.

—> We can never know what future holds for us, but the best we can do is live in the present and strive to make it the second to none moment of our life. Our efforts in unison with our beliefs will work wonders. That is when every object of the universe will start shedding energy for us and conspire with us to work magic in our life. Fearing a future will only mess with our present.

—> Many times in life we find people behave contrary to our expectations.

—> You cannot make everyone behave as per your presumption and this perhaps is the beauty of life.

—> Trust is very brittle; it takes years of hard work and commitment to build, and once it’s built, it takes even more to carry on with it. It’s a value which is reflected in different events of our life: professional or personal, or both together.

—> Irrespective of what you feel for others, you must always strive for doing the right things, the right way.

—> In today’s times, where the bride is often as well-educated and financially stable as the groom, there simply is no rationale for the bride’s family to be subjected to arbitrary demands from the groom’s side. Perhaps someday soon, the families of both sides will contribute equally to the marriage, with neither side assuming a position of supremacy.

—> Travelling can be fun, but coming home is always a relief.

—> Possessions were just meant to comfort us and should not be associated with sentiments. When they become liabilities, it’s better to dispose them.

—> Death is a part of life – we all come to understand that at a very young age. But that doesn’t make losing a loved one any less painful.

—> Our families value traditional norms so much, that the fear of any change in the traditional way of doing things can cloud their reason.

—> Becoming the head of one’s household is a solemn event, because it almost always comes because of the loss of a loved one. In our tradition, the men carry this burden heavily, knowing that the eyes of their family are upon them, and that failure is not an option. Although the women in our culture suffer the grief – perhaps to an even deeper level than the men, especially when they are mothers – they are usually able to mourn under the care of others in the family. For us men, however, the grief of the loss is often shoved aside as we tend to the practical matters of the sanskar karma, the payment for all the services related to the rituals, and the adjustments which must be made within the affected households.

—> Families who forbid women from entering cremation grounds, leave aside performing cremation rites. But have you ever thought about it? Are these women not the wives, daughters and sisters of those who have passed away? They are also bread winners for many families. They are equal in every sphere of life, if not steps ahead. They merely can’t be spectators sitting at home.

—> We can never know what the future holds, but our ‘present’ is made better when we hold on to hope, picturing the best possible outcomes. These pictures turn real if you believe in them.

—> We could all learn something from children. As adults, we sometimes have to muster up motivation to tackle the day, but children have a natural motivation and excitement, looking at every new day as a new opportunity. Not only that, but they rejoice over a new toy or doll, and giving them a bigger one would not make their joy any greater – they know how to celebrate what they have to the full.

—> If you know someone who is facing terminal illness or a devastating disease, I encourage you to help them escape the prison of themselves… to try a change of scenery and meet people of different lands. While it may not cure them or even reduce their suffering, it will give them a sense of living that they otherwise may not ever experience, and give them a chance to dream of better times and better places… to plan for a day when their current restrictions are gone, and they can once again live a full life.

—> Have you ever asked god why you were rewarded with uncountable blessings? No, we never do that. It is only when we find things going a bit differently than our expectations, we make god accountable for the plight. We must also acknowledge the blessings if we curse the desolation.

—> They call it ‘sankalp se srishti – thoughts create destiny’. The secret is to start believing in what you want from your life. Inert power will awaken inside you. You will begin to unlock the true potential of your mind to create the kind of magical life that you have envisaged. It is not all plain-sailing to live your thoughts; it really requires a lot of practice. You must not let any negativity to override your belief. In order to get things right, not even a single thought of negativity thriving in your mind could be spared. You need to be firm and unwavering with your faith, only then you can expect the magic of faith and positivity in fruition.

—> We cannot abandon from striving hard to achieve our goals (what we believe will happen) and replace it just by contemplating for a positive outcome. Certainly this is not the way. Our efforts in unison with our beliefs will work wonders. Only if we believe in achieving our goals, we will work for it with diligence. It would be then that every object of the universe will start shedding energy for us and will conspire with us to work magic in our life.

—> Every person’s life is a roller coaster, with highs and lows. When a serious health condition enters in, however, the ride becomes much more extreme!

—>In many ways, life is pain – and yet, somehow at the same time, it is a joy to live.

—> It’s your thoughts that make your destiny.

—> Taking a break with a change of scenery is usually a good thing. If you can relax and get your mind off your troubles, it raises your spirits, which has to have a positive effect on your well being.

—> How funny we are, we people. As a child, I may have cried over the injury of a needle piercing my skin. As a dying young man, I am grateful for it – knowing that it may lead to my healing.

—> Life indeed is a flow of love, the flow of ecstasy and you have to steal a full life from moments.

—> We must accept the reactions of other people, regardless of whether or not we can understand them or relate to them. Each person has a story, just as I have mine. Each person has had good times and bad, joy and pain. When someone reacts unexpectedly – such as not being generous or kind – it is usually because of suffering in their life. Understanding this makes it easier to allow people to be just who they are, and to forgive reactions that cause us pain. In a way, we can view it as helping them carry their pain, if we can accept the fraction of it that they share with us in the right spirit.

—> I always considered love to be associated with admiration, we love each other for the physical or psychological virtues, we fall for either beauty, intelligence or other virtues in our partner. This experience in life has taught me another view of love ‘generosity’. Love in this context is not a thrill in the face of accomplishments and desires, it’s a skill to seek beyond partner’s outer dimensions into their experiences in life to bestow forgiveness and kindness and to be generous in spite of trickiness of life.

—> To sustain healthy and long relationships, we need to explore generosity in love.

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