When I got the book in hand for the first time, the first thing that crossed my mind was: “This book must have a melodramatic, girly storyline and I surely I will have a tough time going thorough it.”
Now that I am done with the book and have settled down for writing this review, the first thing that’s crossing my mind is: “I am happy that I have read this book.” This self-talking may sound as cliched, boring and melodramatic as the title of the book, but this thought also reminds me ‘not to judge a book by its cover‘.
FFAFW (as I will fondly call it now onwards) sorrounds the story of the lives of four major protagonists – Tara, Neel, Jenna, Anand, and sorrounding them runs the lives of other small-time-yet-considerable characters of the story. Neel returns to India from the USA to take care of his old parents, and in contrast, Anand, the other male protagonist settles down in the USA going from India. The setting maybe different that way, but the emotional settings are all the same. As they say, ‘Once an Indian, always an Indian’, though Anand stays happily with his family so far away from his motherland, but sometimes his heart skips a beat for his weakness towards anything related to India.
Tara Mehra is the epicentre of all the tremors that run through the hearts of Anand, and Neel. In its path, it devastates Anand and as at the end of the story states, the same tremor makes Neel realise his inner calling; and also his love for Tara. In the meantime, Jenna, the American girlfriend of Neel who comes to India to settle down with him realises that India have just taken Neel away from her. And the sweet and intelligent character that she has been portrayed as, accepts it and returns back to her country.
The story line may sound like a boring printed counterpart of any Bollywood family saga, but here lies the twist to the tale – the storytelling. Bhavna Rai, the author, is an impeccable storyteller. She mixed up experiences from her thirteen years of experience in the IT industry with suitable imagination, and what finally churned out was a fast-moving, you-can’t-help-continue-reading story of new age Urban young Indian professionals. The story is very true to the age that we are in, and in many ways, relevant to our society and personal lives. Ample practicality and simplicity is what makes it a sure-shot winner!
For a reader like me who is just about to set his foot forward to the big, old IT industry, this story is an eye-opener. The intricate details of the interior functioning of the IT industry, along with the risks that it carries as an extra baggage, the office politics, the motivation to work hard to reach your goal – all these have been nicely expressed as live images by the author. Love is not just another thing – Love is the feeling around which the world revolves. Love for his woman is what gives a man the intent inspiration to do good in his life, in his workplace.
Negatives: Editing could have been better. Paragraph-divisions could have been more controlled and reader-friendly.
I feel the biggest win for an author is to make the readers brood/think about what he/she has written. Bhavna Rai is a winner that way too!
Rating: 8/10. (Surely going to be one of the better reads of this year)