Outcasted Life in Colors of Social Inequalities

Book Title: Two Leaves and A Bud

Author: Mulk Raj Anand

Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars

Get Your Copy: Amazon

A Bird’s Eye View

About the Storyteller:

Mulk Raj Anand’s style of writing sets the reader to think deeply and it also evokes a reaction from the reader. I read this book as part of my Indian Writing in English course, in the second year of my BA (English Literature). It is a fact that English Writers of Indian origin spoke of highly serious topics such as caste and social discrimination. Or it could be that the choice of Writers were the ardent freedom struggle activists. Some Writers used humour while some believed in holding the note of deep contemplation in place during the course of their narratives about the British rule in India.

It was almost like Gangu’s the protagonist and his family’s troubles were never ending and the way out of the situation does not seem available anywhere. In that way, the plot’s moment of happiness was also colored by the protagonist’s non-achievable delusion of future happiness. While reading Anand’s work, I felt it, that it was a rather overload of sadness which kept lining the story from start to finish. It was never dropped even during those small happy moments in the life of the major characters. In this Anand reminded me of Charles Dicken’s writing keeps making things harder, especially to find even a moment of joy in any described situations in story.

The Story in a Nutshell

A Farmer of Amritsar who has lost his land to the moneylenders is forced to move out of his familiar hometown to an unfamiliar state in Assam where he struggles in the pathetic condition to just live one day after another with his family being safe. What happens to his family and to him in the new place and how the contractor just painted a life of prosperity which turned to nothing but a mirage of horror.

Review

My Likes and Dislikes

I liked the intensity with which Anand wrote this story. There is no rest from the constant feeling of desperation and desire that something good would happen makes a refrain in the mind’s of the reader; but then, there were no breaks. The strength of a human’s mindset of hope that keeps ebbing and flowing through our being is reflected in Gangu and his family too. But eventually, reality strikes and everything is just darkness. I also liked the flow of words when I read it and it felt like I was living in the British rule era.

What I disliked was the few characters major evil ones, but they were the plot progressing villains who were the catalyst to moving ahead of the story. But I think if you can make some character to be hated by the reader, then the readers are invested in your story and the protagonist.

That way, this book had a lot of interesting paragraphs where the author’s ability to describe the scene and emotions of the characters comes out very well. This novel was very sad and at the end of it, you are happy because it was a definite tragedy and it is a little over the top with injustice hanging on the hinges. But then, it kind of opens up the mind’s eye towards what could possibly be the reason for the existence of such discrimination and why is that the fellow human beings do not have the basic rights in their life and working condition.

The human’s rights are violated in the working condition of the plantation at every given point. This leaves a sense of constant injustice which becomes a given fact of the contracted workers’ life. That sense of injustice and inequality really gets to you when you read this novel.

My Opinion

The fact that I had to read this novel as a compulsory novel of the Indian Writing in English paper, I felt a sense of dark brooding when I read it. I don’t pick books which are unhappy, but then being socially aware is also part of the deal to read up books that are written with sadness in it.

I do want to read up literary works of Indian Writers, but their grammar is so hard and that of the Wren and Martin variety. But then you have rare thoughts of progress and advancement from these Writers which moves one’s sense of right. But I was someone who enjoyed styles of varied kind. If I read for a specific time a specific style, then, I tend to be able to pick it up.

Like for instance, there was a time, when I kept reading Shakespeare’s plays and landed up being able to read like natural English. I side poetry more than prose. Anand’s prose was one such pleasure to read, but the subject left me depressed and a little disappointed about the inequalities in a society of that time.

The people who live in the delusion that all is well and continue life in stupor, sometimes need to get their jolt in novels such as these. The novel brings out the oppression in plain statements and in turn showing this mirror of society the reader is not given any space to escape. I believe if the book does that to you, then you are reading an exceptional writer’s work.

Image Source: Amazon Online

Panoramic View of History of India

Book Title: India Shastra | Reflections on the Nation in our Time

Author: Shashi Tharoor

Translator:  N/A

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Get Your Copy:  Amazon | Flipkart | SnapDeal

A Bird’s Eye View

About the Author:

This book is the first of my political books that I have ventured to read up. Shashi Tharoor as an author is very structured and articulate. His thoughts are progressive and innovative. Each chapter has been written with the mindset to expand the readers thoughts and get a general perception of true advancement of India.

As a person who has held official posts in the Indian government, he speaks erudite lingo of progress. Sometimes the best expressed thoughts create the right kind of impact on the readers. As an author I found him to be convincing with much of the intelligence of political tendency to be articulate to a fault.

Sometimes, I found him to be pro-congress in his expressions. I think that is expected given that he belongs in the Congress party. But I was disappointed that it colored some of his perceptions, I looked forward for some fair deal in voicing what Congress did wrong too. But then loyalties are stood up to by using finesse of expressions.

Book in a Nutshell:

The book is divided into 8 section under the varied topics, and sub-topics are covered with well structured thought process. This gives a reader a complete panoramic view of India’s political stand from Pre-Independence day to Modified days. The book contains some really interesting information bundled into knowledge packets. The past, present and future of India is beautifully drawn using words as a medium.

The author has been really sharp and erudite in expressing his visions, provisions for better Indian governance. The common goal of India has been given a beautiful platform to perform and excel with good and wise leadership at the helm. Is there a single party that can provide good leadership at the helm is still open for a debate?

Review

My Likes and Dislikes

Shashi Tharoor as a thinker is par excellence. His thought process is really the niche that this book enjoys and educates the readers. The fact that India at various stage of history has been bouncing back on its feet and continuing its journey of progress. As the largest live democracy India’s political engine works with its regular set of maintenance requirement.

Per se, I had no dislikes about the book; but I did felt that Shashi couldn’t prevent the voice of his party infringe his words in certain places. If BJP voices strongly against minority, then Congress goes equally loud on religion and other weaker points of BJP. But then, there is no ownership to faults in Congress governance. This could possibly be that while representing a greater machine of Democracy’s working in voting populace that will get your eyes popping, I believe the Laxmanian Common Man has to bear the brunt.

My Opinion

I must say that the book was really much more informative than the history book that I read in my school days. Given the requirement to rote learn all details, I wonder if history books do carry the truth or truth according to the group that won the war. When I read Shashi Tharoor’s history, then I wondered all the hardship of memorizing even the swatted shape of a dead mosquito in my history book doesn’t serve the purpose of educating me. But given so many wars, humans have yet to learn that war is futile and not worth all those bloodshed.

History is often written by the winners of the situation and it is angled to make the winner’s look better. But history is always is written on blood that will leave you cold and rebuked as an outcaste. But then what does the common man want of all this history upheaval? I would say that the night will follow the day and likewise, various parties may come and go; but still, public problems are just that, public problem unresolved.

Image Source: Flipkart

A Boy Growing Up In a Graveyard | A Light Take

Book Title: The Graveyard Book

Author: Neil Gaiman

Translator:  N/A

Rating:   3.5 of 5 Stars

Get Your Copy:  Amazon | Flipkart | SnapDeal

A Bird’s Eye View

About the Storyteller:

Neil Gaiman is an author who loves libraries from his formative years. The surprising thing about this author is his quality of making the horrific almost a natural occurrence. I enjoyed the way he works on the story of Bod and there are some excellent moments of surprises. The flow of words is done with such care, that I like the way things connect in this book.

The storyteller’s style is a little green; but the magic of words and images create a feeling of eerie quality. It is like seeing an Halloween costumed kindergarten play. The various components of this story presents an interesting combination of fictional imagination being given the reality coloring, that have an almost thrilling experience for the reader.

Story in a Nutshell:

The story surrounds around a little boy named Bod and how he grows in the graveyard with complete access to the world of the dead. The experiences that Bod undergoes in this story is quiet interesting. A sense of protectiveness towards Bod that is shown by graveyard dwellers makes the spirits of the death to have reminiscent human feelings. The young baby in the crib loses not only its entire family; but also has to put up with threats to his life, all through his growing years.

The best part of the story is the realistic way in which the story ends. The episodes around the graveyard and Bod’s understanding that takes form through his own emotional growth is a wonderful way to experience this book. There are much more interesting information in the book, that captures the attention of the readers.

Review

My Likes and Dislikes

I like the way the graveyard is structured and the magical quality with which the scenes are set together to bring out the sense of thrill and a more human view of the life beyond. Of course, the concept of hell is dealt differently in my culture and this book gave me another perspective.

There is nothing that I dislike in this book. I believe I will not come across a book which I would dislike. I always thought that a book is basically a point of view and the author or creator takes the pleasure of creating it for their readers.

My Opinion

I believe this book is a great starting point for young readers who are willing to explore friendly kind of ghosts and other creatures who live in the graveyard. I did tell my niece when she suggested this book from her book shelf, that I am easily frightened person. My niece was very insistent, that I read the book only before I go to sleep. By the time I was four pages down the book with my slow reading, I knew this story to be gripping. I suggest it even for people who are easily frightened to experiment with life in the beyond and quirks around those hangouts.

Image Source: Pexels.com

Touched and Stirred by Magical Realism

Book Title: A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings

Author: Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Translator:  Spanish to English

Rating:  4. 5 of 5 Stars

Get Your Copy:  Amazon | Flipkart | SnapDeal

A Bird’s Eye View

About the Storyteller:

My mentor recommended reading Gabriel Garcia Marquez to get an understanding of magical realism genre. This was the first story in this genre which unconsciously reflected in the works that I submitted to mentor for one-on-one mentorship. The storyteller was so fabulous with his words and his storytelling methods were so clear, that it was such an easy story to read. Within the space of the format short story the writer created a world which passed through months while creating lovable illusion of the old man.

Story in a Nutshell:

The story revolves around the strange looking old man with huge wings landing at Pelayo and Elisenda’s doorstep. The stranger arrives unexpectedly and leaves as unexpectedly from their house. The whole mystery behind the stranger visit is fresh and full of intrigue for just a short duration. Strange man is popular figure to be looked at and provoked. Pelayo and Elisenda make the most of the situation and make a small fortune from charging for seeing the strange man. The stranger’s uniqueness is overshadowed by another unusual person and people flock up to see that, instead of the strange man, who was getting to be boring to watch. The author played around the stranger walking into the house and how he leaves eventually without making any recognizable difference.

 

Review

My Likes and Dislikes

This story was my first exposure to magical realism and it felt really different from all the other stories. I liked the idea of getting a really supernatural element into the ordinary existence, and then, let it play out its course. This technique was done with great efficiency by the writer. I liked the way the story goes and there was much to explore within that space and the author made full use of that unique space.

There was nothing to dislike about this story and I felt a little disappointed that the people though they declared the stranger to an angel and lost interest on him after a duration. But then, I believe it is exactly the way human being react. Something remains novel and interesting until it satisfies the unique curiosity. The minute the novelty of newness had replaced with over familiarity, it then takes away the novelty. But this is also a fact of life and the author played with it gracefully.

My Opinion

I would recommend reading this short story because it didn’t have a moment when the mind was not turned inside-out in self-questioning. There were such great passages to read in a sitting, that it creates great joy to the reader. People who are looking for complex plots with fine-tuned sensitivity would enjoy Marquez’s stories.

 

Image Source:  http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/pl.cgi?507702

 

 

Dwelling in the Simple Minds of Religious Fractions

Book Title:  Silas Marner

Author: George Eliot

Translator:  N/A

Rating:  3.5 of 5 Stars

Get Your Copy:  N/A

A Bird’s Eye View

About the Storyteller:

George Eliot is the pen name of Mary Ann Evans, who was a popular novelist of the 19th century. As a writer, she was more inclined towards topics related to religion and she has explored the various interpretations; while holding a more radical view on the subject. Her novels play on plot events and its human reaction to religious rules that get violated or modified for individual use. Evans’ life was filled with not being accepted by her people and she gained some acceptance from her written works which was a small relief from the disowning she had faced for her belief system. As a radical writer, she comes out with some really appealing books that I enjoyed reading.

Story in a Nutshell:

Silas Marner was a weaver by profession with a dark past that has taken away his belief in a just God in his known world. His only activity was to weave and to sell his product with minimal human interaction. His aspiration after he had collected couple of gold coins was to increase it. He gets obsessed with the gold coins, that it to an exclusion of all other things. This Gold gets robbed, which shakes his sense of security and being subjected by God to an unjust second verdict on his life.

On New Year’s eve Silas finds an abandoned child in his home. He first mistakes it for his gold; but then, warmth of the golden curls of the child wakes his sense of being among the living. The girl child becomes his sole support and getting recognized as an agreeable person for the society around him. From the time of the Child’s presence in his life everything changes for Silas.

The story revolves around the various Characters struggling with their issues and belief systems. The religious thoughts that are found in two different places becomes a comparison grounds for religion based discourse through the characters’ thought process. How the issue of faith and questioning of it is handled by the author is the most enjoyable part of the novel. There is much that gets analyzed using the Characters as a main members contributing to the issue of faith.

Review

My Likes and Dislikes

The one thing that I liked about this novel, was the fact that, the author was willing to question practices that were not scientific. There are much radical thoughts, that get introduced in the process of the plot progress. I loved the fact that the author questions some of the thoughts held in the religious ground without stampeding the general accepted sensitivity of the age in which the author lived in and interacted. But given that, it was written in the early days of radical questioning days, I feel the novel is made of great stuffs for intellectual wondering even in the present day intellectualizing.

One thing that I disliked about this novel, was the fact that, the author didn’t have to raze the Lantern Yard to non-existence. It was an easy way out by removing the entire place and leaving just the prison alone. There was much that could be explored if the place had remained.

My Opinion

The plot seems deceivingly simple but it isn’t. Silas Marner is the central figure around whom the entire story revolves. Silas has epileptic attacks which leaves him in an unconscious state for some duration was a great place to explore. The author plays around the medical condition which was interpreted as an unnatural interference from the divine or the devil in varying degree of interpretation. This sets the stage for the entire novel in many ways. The odd practice of deciding using a lot was an actual practice was surprising; but quiet fresh understanding. As a radical read, I found this book very interesting to intellectualize in my mind.

Image Source: http://www.loyalbooks.com/book/silas-marner-by-george-eliot

Stories That Border on Euphemized Indian Lives

Book Title: At Close Quarters

Author: Sonia Narayanan

Translator: N/A

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Get Your Copy: N/A

A Bird’s Eye View

About the Storyteller:

Sonia Narayanan is based in Bangalore and as a writer; she creates stories that are captivating with a nice human twist to it. The storyteller of these pearls of stories has a unique understanding of human mindset. The author weaves in and out of each story with relative ease and she has set them in different parts of India, thus diversifying the whole collection. The characters are built with such care and details that it showed the writer’s sparkle of writing talent.

Story in a Nutshell:

The short stories in this collection are really interesting with multiple level of flavoring, that it covers all the reader’s entertainment requirement with ease. The collection has 10 short stories set at various places and with different types of personalities. The stories start off, as if ambling into the park of storytelling, while holding the feeble thread of an audience attention with great care. These stories are emotionally mature and yet so filled with human fallacies that become the part of our everyday commoner’s life.

Review

My Likes and Dislikes

More than likes, I would say I found a writer who conversed with me. I was captivated by her storytelling style. I loved the fact that the characters were either casual stroke of the brush or intricate painting of Dorian Gray personality feel. There was a taste of R. K. Narayan in the description of the settings but the characters were Sonia’s own. I enjoyed spending time in the scene, while my emotions were the crumbling fourth wall.

There wasn’t much that I disliked about this book, but I did feel that she was hiding from actually placing the dark side without any obscurity. Because in the short story “Anand” I felt she played it safe and left the death of Anand’s wife as a mere apology. Maybe that is the only thing that I felt that the author was not doing it right. I think euphemism is good for certain stories and sometimes one just has to be brutally true in some stories.

But that brings up an unique question within me. Do we have to be graphically explicit in our stories to be authentic? Or just not talking about the bad stuff makes us more palatable writer of reality and social activist causes.

My Opinion

I enjoyed all the ten stories and would love to read it again. But the first impression of the stories can never be replicated. It was a wonderful Indian flavors presented in gentle spirit of being socially right. Great read!

6 Degrees Game of Blogs | BlogAdda.com

Book Title: 6 Degrees | Game of Blogs

Translator: N/A

Rating: 3 of 5 Stars

Get Your Copy: @Amazon | @Flipkart | @SnapDeal | @Bookadda

A Bird’s Eye View

About the Storyteller: The Blogadda webportal had introduced a storytelling contest in which ten members get together to write a story. The final output of the Game of Blogs contest was the book titled “Six Degrees Game of Blogs.” There are three stories in this book written by three group of ten members:

The Awakening by Team By Lines

Entangled Lives by Team Potliwale Baba

Missing – A Journey Within by Team Tété-à-Ten

The stories by each of these team of ten had one thing in common all of them. They all got the same characters and they had to come up with a story that is complete and integrated.

Story in a Nutshell:

  • The Awakening was set in the present with aliens and human-aliens mix character.
  • Entangled Lives is a murder mystery story and how the outcome changes the lives of important characters.
  • Missing – A Journey Within is about kidnapping and how the plot revolves around it.

All the stories have been written well and of course I was happy to read it.

My Likes and Dislikes

I liked the fact of collaborative story telling because I have enjoyed writing one such interactive story myself. I was happy that the team of bloggers have worked at random levels and completely via online interaction. But of the three stories I was partial to The Awakening but even in that I felt there was a need to be more futuristic.

Entangled Lives is a wonderful story because I am partial to murder mysteries. The way the bloggers took the story was interesting too. It kept reminding me of various Hercules Poirot detective novels. I had too many sleuth to compare and crime scene didn’t get my throat constricted. That was missing in this story. But it was a great read though.

Each story strayed into my imagination and remained a gentle reminder that creativity in collaboration is quiet possible. I felt the Missing – A Journey Within, the writers took a bold step in storytelling; but yet something was missing in the story. I was searching for it throughout the story. But I liked the way it ended.

My Opinion

I would recommend one time read of the Six Degrees Game of Blogs and get the feel of integrated presence of a team effort.

A Wondrous Carpet And a Woman’s Life

Book Title: The Blood of Flowers

Author: Anita Amerrizvani

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars|

Get Your Copy: @Amazon | @Flipkart | @SnapDeal | @BookAdda

A Bird’s Eye View

Author Bio | Anita Amerrizvani is an Iranian-born-American writer. She was born in Tehran but raised in San Francisco. She got to choose a carpet for herself when she was fourteen years of age where the bug of writing this story got her under its spell. That magical quality of the carpet and weaves are been beautifully explained in her spellbinding work.

The Story in a Nutshell | The story is set in the 17th century in Persia where a young woman finds her ways in a trouble-filled life. She contends with all the various religion and social incrimination to reach her goal. She gets married not the way all girls of her acquaintance are getting married. Yet her spirits not to give up comes out beautifully. The story begins in a small village and shifts to the Isfahan where the hustle and bustle of life in the capital are beautifully portrayed in choicest words.

My Likes and Dislikes

The parts that I liked about the story was the weaving and carpet-making details. Especially when a carpet is being described the narrative takes on an interesting level of fascination that needs to be enjoyed.

The lifestyle back in the 17th century has come out with great details and the social setting also has been given equal importance. The lanes and households of a carpet-maker in Isfahan in those past centuries have been brought out beautifully.

Even the unpleasantness in the story has been handled with an excellent blend of panache and style. When the main character undergoes a lot of trouble in her life and you would think that the story is going to be a tragedy, a turn of event happens to better the situation.

There was very little that I disliked about this book. The memory of the Arabian Night kept coming in between my flow of thoughts. That makes this story unique and interesting.

The scenes set in the hammam have been treated like a reference point of woman folks varied conversation that is personal and emotional at the same time. The women in this story are being objectified by the society and her value is nothing more than the dowry that she brings into the family. The author doesn’t try to judge it by the main character. She merely agrees to it as the plot progresses through the various twists and turns.

There is an incredible force in the narration that allows you to see the social setting being challenged and given a new interpretation which is unique in keeping with where the character comes from. That docile village girl who gets cheated by a buyer of her carpet is a turning point by itself for the character’s growth. That section of the story is handled with great care and wonderful sensitivity.

My Opinion

I feel this book is great to read and can be read more than once. The author’s descriptive words bring the past to life and there is an interesting quality in the scenes that a set for readers. There is much that can be understood of a particular culture and how they function.

I read this book more than three times and it is my favorite book to pick when I have a lot of time on me with nothing organized to be done. There is such great feeling of connection with the past and getting that experience of pure fun of a well-told story.

Simply Put Senti-Flick Karan Johar

Book Title: An Unsuitable Boy

Author: Karan Johar with Poonam Saxena

Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars

Get your copy @ Amazon

Movies are great ways to live a dream and believe a lie that stands out like a sore thumb in your logical mind’s eye. When Karan Johar’s Kuch Kuch Hota Hai came out I was just out of college going through an identity crisis. But the movie’s song track was the regular loop song that I would listen while working on my writing. Those were the tape recorder days. About a fortnight later, singers sound as if they were crying in my ears because of over listening to the songs. The electronic tape had been abused once too often.

My mother was visiting my brother and sister in the US and I was in charge of the house. Every three days in a week, I would stomp off to my Veena classes at my teacher’s flat. I would be so in the songs from this movie that it was such a fascinating package of lies that I fell for hook, line, and sinkers.

The Karan Johar that I recognized as he was from Koffee with Karan series. I never thought Karan as an effeminate person, but saw him as someone who spoke his mind. Of course, he was hip and fashionable for the moment. But I did feel his K3G was passé. Of course, I understand that bringing together the family that is in disagreement is simple stuff blown beyond.

But heck, I love all the songs from all of Karan’s films. I tell you; just try selling a non-musical to an Indian audience, the seller would be in deep shit. Indian audience wants to be wined, dined, and danced around trees to boot. Honestly how many album sellers make it with just audio?!! Mix the audio with a visual you get the magic in the roundabouts.

Karan was never my favorite, but then there is no favorite in the film industry. I just go to movies for the stories, if I laugh, cry, sigh or just be emotional just a bonus. But of late, I have stopped watching movies in multiplexes. I just do the waiting game, and then, low behold the movie gets screened in one of the movie channels of the satellite television.

Karan sold off India in the crème of crème lifestyles and you don’t go to his movies thinking that you have discovered the deep-seated truth. Maybe you would see the illusion of truth, where you are in mid-heaven for three hours. In that duration, you forget your surroundings and at the end of which you land with a thud on your cushioned multiplex seat. Welcome back to reality!

Karan’s autobiography is also about feeling good, nah! He is an old hand at making you feel comfortable, and then, drop the bombshell of his specific spice of understanding.

Of course, he made the socializing sound like as if it is just drinking tea in the afternoon. Excuse me, let me tell you I am a social freakout case, I have a hard time talking in a team meeting for just four people. I am not risking my butt for anything social.

There was something exceptional when you listen to Karan talk his mind and that magic came through in this book. I read the book non-stop until 174 pages in a day. It was only when the forced break of my life came in that I had a hard time finishing the balance of the book.

Karan was everywhere in the film industry. From picking costumes to lines helping roles to manhandle the camera with sensitivity, I must say I was impressed. He threw titles of movies that smacked of wealth and panache. I wondered if Satyajit Ray is turning in his grave.

Yeah, I’m that brand of viewer who is looking for purpose and deeper meaning to life and other factors. But even they would like to be entertained and have fun. That way Karan’s movies are fun to watch and sometimes overly sentimental. Then get ready to check out that heart-soul-mind mingle in his book too.

A lone cameraman trying to see this world with his color tint glasses in search of the truth and realism interested viewers must once have a watch of those movies that were completely just fam-dram-cram. I was totally taken in by his insecurities and strengthen which is as unique as he himself is. He is not afraid to voice it. Interestingly his entire voyage with the movie industry is exceptional and funky like him.

I would recommend a onetime read which would be fascinating as a Geminian character alone can bring to light. But surely I found a match with my reading as a true undecided Libran. Now I have comfortably boxed him into a stereotype that will revise as I go along. Worth it for once, at least!

Rishi Kapoor Goes Candid

Book Title: Khullam Khulla | Rishi Kapoor Uncensored

Author: Rishi Kapoor with Meena Iyer

Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars

Get your copy @ Amazon

Rishi Kapoor has been my childhood hero whose acting used to have a light and frivolous carefree feel to it. There were innumerable of his movie songs that I remember swinging to with no sense of movement. But heck who cares how you danced as long as you were happy with the song.

So this year’s The Hindu Lit for Life 2017 book festival was a welcome invitation to pick some books. So, as usual, I hit the bookstall like I was the bull in the Jallikattu with the right touch of patience. I didn’t wish to be the charging bull in a China shop.

Anyway, I was skimming the shelf for a book to pick. Of late my interest in Creative Non-Fiction has become an obsession. So naturally, Autobiographies comes under Non-Fiction category, my eyes zeroed in on the two prominent celebrities and the book was being charged for on my card.

I was waiting for a workshop to begin, so I just found a nice cozy corner that I could possibly find in the crowded festival venue. Soon everything public just vanished as Rishi’s words captured my imagination.

Words have a way with my mind and I must say that there has been a great effort on the writing team to make it simple and easy to understand. I felt so relaxed as I was reading up the incidence and experience of the actor spoken from the angle of someone finding his way around his profession.

Rishiji didn’t get everything easily though he did have someone to launch which meant that he had to come with the baggage of expectation. With his father being a recognized actor, it is far more intense because the old timer attitude for actor’s sons and daughters make it filmistan as an immediate superstar is rather hard on the child.

Even though Rishiji doesn’t talk a lot about his time trying to manage all those thoughts that became a part of his character set in the industry. He is very careful with his angle towards his emotion. There is a marked restraint of a seasoned actor and yet he does speak of his relationship with such candor that the reader will like him for his plain speaking.

But there was some aspect of his industry based relation that seems to be rather affected. My inference on this point has been based on the way the book flowed from the point of his entry in cinema with the scene of walking in the rain in a raincoat for a song sequence in Raj Kapoor’s movie.

There is much of little of everything that Rishiji speaks about in his work that gives the reader an insight into the actor’s mind. Given that the Kapoor family is known as actor-producers, I am wondering if Rishi Kapoor was a reluctant actor but eventually got interested in his career while being subjected to pampering and heightened expectation.

Though his friends are almost all from the film industry and I didn’t get to know anyone with whom he had created a bond. That reserved part of Rishiji is clearly felt throughout the book.

Seriously, there is no information about having an incident in the set expectations for his multiple angles shot and repeating the scene multiple numbers of time until it is perfect. His gripe about not being able to pull off n-number retakes from different angles seemed so out of sort for his sensitivity.

Eventually, as we encounter the grown-up Rishji it was very interesting. The fan following that one finds in past and in the present and maybe even in the future is that actor is 360 degrees from social media boom day. I fear for the current day actors because they can’t be themselves away from the maddening crowd.

That way Rishiji era hero is given an innumerable view of the past, present, and glimpse of the future trend of an actor. His book brought out that beautifully. Because, after all, Romeo of Shakespeare, is still the young man with his heart beating in synch with the romance in the air.

Rishiji has evolved in his movies and his book might seem like a list of movies that he had done and nothing much. But without his knowledge, the color that he had given his work reflects in the angle of narration.

An enjoyable read if you are a fan of Rishiji if you are more for the old-fashioned restrained hero who couldn’t be wrong. But Rishiji as a person, I would love to have a cuppa with him and talk about his work. If you want that feel, then I suggest that you grab this book and a cup of steaming tea and rock that conversation.