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Book Review: Notes from an Imperfect Life by Jithu Biji Thomas

Notes from an Imperfect Life by Jithu Biji Thomas is a short novel built on themes like family allegiance, love and separation, societal pressure, relationships, death, philosophy of life that shows the failure side of life and so on. The book is easy to read and many people can relate that have endured hues and cries while being in the family bonding.

In the story, a father expresses his feelings and bitter sweet learning of life to his stepson through a journal. The father shares his own love story and under what conditions he accepted the step son and his mother. While narrating his tale of love, he sheds light on relationship that goes in the family with all members. He is of the opinion that bad relationships are capable of darkening the lives. This short except may sum up what he was trying to focus on:

“Regarding relationships, it should be placed where people grow. No relationship should stagnant your growth. Places where people are trapped have different names. Don’t cause one or be in one. Son, your life is just a matter of finite days. Lessen the darker days, if possible.”

Next, he also expresses his honesty about being a step father. He did not go for another child for the sake of his step son. “I may have been totally indifferent to you if I could father another child.”

The father expresses his depression and distraught state of mind with his son, because it could be possible that the father may embrace death in the aftermath of suicide of the woman he loved. She was the mother too. She went mentally berserk when his only son chose to be a gay. LGBT is one of the hidden themes in the book. Does the society accept gay relationship? May be…the book leaves it on a cliffhanger?

“Your mother couldn’t take it along with her mental battles and she committed suicide.”  

But the another dark side of the story is that the father always considered himself a failed person all his life due to some decisions he took. However, it doesn’t matter as a lot of life lessons can be leant from an imperfect life. The following excerpt says it all.

“I guess I have not performed well in the roles that were assigned to me. But who cares? Isn’t there some beauty in the imperfect?”

The novella is straightforward with a predictable plotline, however, in between the story becomes gripping with short sweeps and back stories. Narration is simple and to the point, the author has tried to keep the story as progressive as possible. It’s a satisfactory novella with thought-provoking societal elements.

Buy from Amazon/Kindle.


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