Brink & Beyond by Supriya Saraswati is a collection of ten short stories. The book is poignant in bringing forward a gamut of female voices in the various circumstances. It’s not a piece of feminism but most of the stories giving battle cries for their women protagonist. Not necessary that these characters are rebels or loudmouthed, rather they are quiet and determined.
Clearly the book is meant for serious audience, and for sure grabs the attention of women who has endured the trough and crest and equivocal vagaries of life. If the destiny rolls out is wrath, it is the women that bear the heat of suffering most.
The first story is quite powerful about a girl who has been cheated by many to work as a prostitute. This story may bring a lump of grief to anyone's throat. It will shock you, leave you drained and trying to muffle screams of despair.
All stories walk around the different aspects of womanhood, shedding light on the trials, the pains, the triumphs and the debacles. Each story reflects truths that we see every day, at times right before our eyes and sometimes safely tucked away to nibble at our souls, bit by bit.
Some of the stories are preceded by lyrical poetic notes. Supriya's narration is subtly intertwined, you may need to reread some part in every story. She wrote an intensity but with an introvert heart. Despite all, the collection is readable and may leave you with absolute brooding if you value the life of a woman around you. These stories spiral off from different figures like a suppressed prostitute, a mother cogitating about her child loss, a blogger in search of someone who could stay long, an elder women longing to have a conversational ambience in her house. At some points, the stories do not come clear but the message.
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