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Book Review: Speed Post by Shobha De

The relationship between mother and child is nothing less than beauty and happiness bonded in their blood. Shobha De’s Speed Post is proved to be a written record of such a wonderful relationship.

Speed Post by Shobha De is a kind of biographical book of a twenty-first-century Indian mother. Here the focus is on being a friend more than a mother, through letters. As we go through these letters we can visualize every aspect of Shobha De’s life, whether it is her childhood, her attitude towards the world, her approach to accepting modern views, or her motherly propensity to tackle the problems and issues of her children.

In ‘Speed Post’ Shobha De has written letters to her children. The letters are interesting for the teenagers as well as the parents too. The most glaring aspect of the lives of teenagers today is their disturbed relationship with their parents and guardians. Teen-parent relationships lack trust, intimacy, and frankness. Many teenagers are starved of parental love and affection. Shoba De deals with each and every point that concerns the teenagers. Mother’s love is the fuel that enables the normal human being to do the impossible. Mother’s love is unconditional. Mothering is certainly an uphill job and not everyone’s cup of tea.  An apt comment made on the television show ‘Golden Girls’ – it is not easy being a mother. If it were easy fathers would do it.

In ‘Speed Post’ we get a new portrait of Shobha De as a caring loving mother. In today’s world, where the normal attraction between the sexes is distorted by sexual explicit imagery in advertisements, music videos, television serials and the cinema, youngsters do need a guide in their lives.

‘Speed Post’ is about memory and love, confusion and uncertainty. A record of our dilemmas and moral choices as we struggle to come to terms with our respective expectations and identifies one as children, other as parent.

In the last segment of ‘Speed Post’, the heart goes on; Shobha De expresses her feelings regarding some special events which she has experienced with her children. In this segment, she has shared some important emotional moments with her children and readers too. The touchy story of her driver Vinayak is the best example of this. The experience of millennium’s last solar eclipse is another example. In addition, she has also shared reviews and knowledge about God, religion, Kargil War which she watched on television with her children.

Speed Post as the very title says, are letters written by a mother to her children on how to lead life, caring and love, dealing with the world. Shobha De has artistically shared her experience with her children. Seeing that we go from beginning to end read the written letters we come to know wonderfully Shobha De, as a mother, understands her children, their problems, their thinking, and feelings. In short, Speed Post is the ambassador of every twenty-first-century Indian mother.

In fact, Speed Post is a guideline not only for the children of Shobha De but for young guys and confused mothers. Segment wise division of letters pushes to analyze many aspects of Shobha De as a mother.


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