~Spotlight: Empty Fists by Mangalam Shiva~

Empty Fists by Mangalam Shiva "God, why has this happened to me? I have never hurt anybody in my life. I have been sincere to God, to my work, to my husband....Yet, I have to suffer this cruel brutality. Why?"

A software professional who led a charmed life, finds that life destroyed by a single brutal incident… A man on his deathbed realizes a life spent in the US chasing money, filled his pockets but left him empty… An ambitious reporter with her dreams within grasp, finds them turning into dust… A beautiful woman is locked in a battle against unwanted male attention with shocking results… Meet these characters - strong, inspiring, wayward, cynical, ambitious, and share their journey, in this contemporary anthology of ordinary lives, extraordinary insights.


Empty Fists is an anthology. A collection of short stories reflecting on the different aspects of life faced by every individual. There is love, friendship, struggle, even loss. This is a collection of stories that will truly touch your heart from beginning to end.


One of the best parts of Siva’s writing is his ability to convey emotion through each of his characters. Even though there’s a mix of male, female, or even animal, I still felt something tug at my heart with every story. A different message was conveyed in each tale but it wasn’t hard to find them and to learn from them. Shiva paints a very plain and clear picture of what he wants to say and he does it in such a way that readers of all ages can enjoy his work.

-Valicity Garris

Empty Fists is a collection of short stories that tackle multiple themes but the primary focus of the stories is on the difficulties faced by women in their daily lives. Many women are ostracized and exploited in today's world in spite of the progress of civilization. The stories in this collection highlight the struggles and tragedies in the lives of women while also venturing to portray the desires, failures, agony and ecstasy which are part of human existence.

I liked most of the stories. They have a lot of depth and emotions are expressed brilliantly. The author has a good grip on language though at times he uses unnecessary adjectives and that affects the flow of the story. I was particularly impressed with the story about a stray dog and how the dog understands the things that happen around him. This unique point of view surprised me pleasantly. These stories need attention not just because they are commendable pieces of literary fiction, but also because they expose the dark side of society defined by oppression and violence.

-Saradia Chatterjee

Where you can find Empty Fists:


Interview with Mangalam:

1.  Tell me about your book and why you decided to write it.
EMPTY FISTS, book by me in my pen name MANGALAM SHIVA, has short stories. We human beings always think that we are superior to animals and they are all dumb just because the other living things cannot think like humans or talk. Raju the intelligent stray dog proves that even animals are clever, can think and save human beings from their disasters. Raju feels and regrets the atrocities committed by people around him.
There are other stories in the book which reflect the social injustices in India affecting weaker sections of the society like Children and Women.
I watched many atrocities happening in our society daily reported in News TV channels. Newspapers etc. As my age did not permit me to take any direct action to stop these atrocities like corruption, rape, kidnaps, loots and social discrimination, I decided to write stories with a hope that some of the readers of my book can bring change to Indian situations.
2.  Who are your favorite authors and why?
My favorite authors are---
I like fictions by these authors as their characters, situations, style and stories are thrilling, interesting and captivating.
3.  What would you like your readers to know about you?
I would like my readers to understand that a retired person has written a moving message giving book of stories. There are moral and social messages which can be implemented wherever there is a scope for these.
4.  Where would you go on your dream vacation?  Who would you bring with you?
I would like my dream vacation in Switzerland, with my dear wife.
5.  Do you have any works in progress?  What are they?
I have got the manuscript of short stories for my second book ready for editing & publication. I am writing more stories for third book to be published at a later date.
6.  If you could give me one piece of advice about life, what would it be?
I am not competent to give any advice to my reader friends. One advice I would give myself is "TOLERANCE WITH ALL".