Having had a fabulous trip to central India looking for tigers earlier this year I simply had to invite Ricardo Alexanders onto Linda’s Book Bag to take me back there through one of his books.
Staying in with Ricardo Alexanders
Welcome to Linda’s Book Bag Ricardo. Thank you for agreeing to stay in with me. I have a feeling I’m going to enjoy this evening.
Tell me, which of your books have you brought along to share and why have you chosen it?
I’ve brought along my second timeslip novel, Bollywood Invasion. Bollywood Invasion is a fantasy novel about a modern-day American boy wakes up in 1958 India as the reincarnation of John Lennon. The reviews have been overwhelmingly positive.
(That sounds such an unusual story!)
I choose Bollywood Invasion because it is unique book. It blends Indian cultural experience, time-travel and the legendary songs from the Beatles. With a plot that moves unexpectedly, and popular Beatles songs beautifully integrated with the story development, Bollywood Invasion takes the readers on a journey from Brooklyn to India, then England, and finally back to New York City, where the protagonist faces his destiny as Lennon’s reincarnation. An interesting question will naturally come: how the course of history would be changed if Lennon had known Chapman weeks before his murder?
(I’m thoroughly intrigued Ricardo. Not least as I’ve been to all those places so I’d love to revisit them through your book.)
What can we expect from an evening in with Bollywood Invasion?
Bollywood Invasion is probably one of the most unique coming of age stories that you’ll read this year or any other year.
Imagine you’re sixteen, and living in Brooklyn, being bullied by every kid who’s bigger than you. Then, BAM! You wake up as a young prince in 1958 India. The only thing tying you back to the 21st Century is your memory of vintage Beatles music… In this distant past, you find love, sex, and even rock and roll. Little by little, you realize that you have reincarnated as someone you know very well… However, this realization is leading you toward a fate that you knows is coming…but cannot easily escape.
Doesn’t this sound interesting?
(It really does.)
Please allow me to share some pre-publication reviews:
“An imaginative…rock ‘n’ roll fantasy.” – Kirkus Reviews
“An engrossing saga that excels in unexpected turns of plot.” – Midwest Book Review
“A poignant romance, page-turner.” – Kaye Trout
(You must be really happy with those responses.)
Please also allow me to share a small excerpt when the protagonist first realizes he ends up in India. In this scene, Kamal is his servant at the royal family’s Mahal:
Okay, Okay, PJ. You ended up somewhere in India for no reason. But this is not too bad. John tried to calm himself down. All you need is an address and a phone call to your parents. They will somehow get the government involved and get you back home to Brooklyn.
“Raj Babu! Brak’fest is here!” Kamal opened the door.
He walked towards Kamal with shaky steps and asked, “What is this place?”
“You at Mahal, Raj Babu,” replied Kamal as he set down the tray on a table in front of the light brown sofa.
“What is the name of this place?”
“Raj Babu, you again feel funny?”
“Is that today’s newspaper?” asked John, then swooped down on the tray and grabbed it before Kamal could answer.
John sat on the sofa with the newspaper in his hand, eyes wide. “This is not possible…” he muttered under his breath before he threw his head back and closed his eyes. “This can’t be…no…no! I am dreaming. This is all a dream…”
“I must call doctor…” Kamal hurried out of the room.
John opened his eyes again and looked at the newspaper. The black print was all jumbled up, except for one part, the part that read – “May 10, 1958.”
(You certainly make it very intriguing Ricardo!)
What else have you brought along and why?
I brought along a little secret of mine. In the past five years, I have spent countless hours in researching India and writing Bollywood Invasion. I learned that India is a country with a long history, rich culture, and omni-beauty. In its chaos, there’s a certain order and great vibrancy. Hearing such statement, many of my Indian friends often assume that I have visited their homeland. The truth is that I have NEVER been to India! I learned about India from Google, from my Indian friends here in the States, and from the Bollywood movies. Here is another little secret, Three Idiots is my favorite Bollywood movie of all time and its Indian college setting helped me greatly in writing the protagonist’s Indian college experience in Bollywood Invasion.
Wow! You MUST get to India. You’re absolutely right. It is an amazing country.
Thanks so much for staying in to tell me more about Bollywood Invasion Ricardo. I think it sounds utterly unique!
A fantasy novel of a modern-day American boy’s journey back in time as the reincarnation of John Lennon.
Sixteen-year-old John Palmieri is living an average life in Brooklyn until one day he wakes up as a prince in India, thirty-five years before he was born. Suddenly, he finds himself with riches and power beyond his wildest fantasies.
Brooklyn is readily forgotten. Life becomes a constant stream of debauchery, coming to a stand-still only when he meets “the one.” However, love doesn’t come easy. He must become a better man and sing his way into her heart, a pursuit ignited by his memories of the vintage Beatles music on his iPod.
Will these legendary songs change John’s life? Can he escape Lennon’s tragic fate? Will he ever find his way back to Brooklyn at his own time?
His fate will unfold in Bollywood Invasion.
Bollywood Invasion is available for purchase here.
About Ricardo Alexanders
Ricardo is a descendant of the Great Yyu, a.k.a. the first king of China. He lives in Massachusetts and enjoys experiencing all kinds of cultures around the world. After obtaining his doctorate in science, he became fascinated with time-travel. As an aspiring writer, he loves to write time-travel fictions that blend fantasy, science, and real history together.