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Showing posts from July, 2017

Book Review: The Tribute by Dash Benhur

‘The Tribute’ is a short story widely popular in the Indian schools. Ironically, the author of this great story is anonymous.
The relevance of this story never chugs out of time; it is a fit story for all times, as it shuttles between the strong themes, like redemption and sacrifice. Babuli, the protagonist of the story, often remembers his schooldays and the contribution of his elder brother in shaping his life. Subsequently, he is settled in a city and living a happy married life.
However, a sense of contrition never leaves him because he has not written a letter to his mother and the elder brother, who live in the village, for almost two years. He is settled in a city, have a job and a wife, i.e. life. Probably, for this reason, he feels not so much concerned about his family that lives in the village in not so good status.
One day, he receives a letter from his elder brother. The letter is about the partition of the ancestral land, home, and everything that was heaped by their pa…

Book Review: A Handful of Nuts by Ruskin Bond

A Handful of Nuts means a few friends who roam around the small town and make each other’s lives tough, if not hell. It is a story of Ruskin Bond by Ruskin Bond – especially when he newly entered into the vertices of adolescent. The story is set in Dehradun – of 1950s – where the narrator lives alone and to accompany him are a few friends who like him are ambitious but empty on pockets. Thus, he being a struggling writer often gives them his money, which he not so frequently receives from newspapers or magazines that publish his work. The only worry of his life is that the pay cheques don’t come regularly. Despite having less money, his life is at large good and going.


Initially hesitant, but soon he develops friendship with a funny Sitaram, son of a washerman. Sitaram is tired of his quarrelsome parents, thus he begins living with him and he proves to be a good and valuable company to the narrator. Sitaram brings pot plants and a pair of trousers and bed sheets for him not with mon…

Book Review: Umrao Jan Ada by Mirza Hadi Ruswa

Was Umrao Jan Ada a fictional character or existed at some point in time - there are plenty of guesses for this famous courtesan?
The figure sounds all the more fictional because several Bollywood movies have been made on it, from old cinema days to modern times.
Umrao Jan Ada is also a novel written in Urdu by Mirza Hadi Ruswa. It was written in late 18th century and covers the events of around that time. The book is staged against the time when Mughal Empire was declining because of decadence and the rise of the British Empire was at the peak of its encroachment.
After reading this book one aspect becomes certain: Umrao Jan Ada was a simple character and her story of struggle was not that great but the penchant with which she learned to dance and poetry made her a famous courtesan of North India - she often tussled between Lucknow to Kanpur to Faizabad. According to the story, she was a simple loving teenage girl of her parents in Faizabad. One day Dilawar Khan, a criminal freed fr…