Book review : Things Fall Apart




I got acquainted with this book, perhaps a year ago- thanks to Wikipedia. It was the topper in ‘Best books of all time’. My mind was sonly stroked by a wave of ‘want-to-read’ sensation, even though it was the first time I was hearing about this Nigerian author. The story pushes through the life of a wrestler, who was nothing short of glory-which he well earned-until he accidently kills a clansman and then havoc is unleashed upon his life. He was boxed out of his clan and forced to live some years in abandon. All his life, he carved for dignity at the highest prospect and he fails just soon before he reaches the point. Once back to his clan after serving the time, misery continues to rot his life as Christian missionaries (Europeans) lure away his elder son from him, and at last to the suicide of this leader.

The first part of the book reveals the unbreakable respect and dignity he enjoyed as a wrestler and a clans leader. Okonkwo’s fame was spread in air throughout West Africa. The author deliberately throws the readers to the realm of African culture which I reckoned as the purest but strangest of this criterion. The superstitions and traditions of these people were brought to the limelight with a pitch of irritation in it. But this is overpowered by the mind-arresting descriptions and jaw dropping chronicles of the African routine. Chinua Achebe may be the only one among the breed of such thought-provoking list.

The simple way of narration helps us to adjourn skipping even exclamations. Tangling us to the end of each sentence, the author pulls us from the start of other. The author pities and criticizes the westernization in Africa, which started as a mere missionary group converting clansmen to Christians. In addition, readers should be grateful to the author, mesmerizing them with the life of a person who is as motivating as tom Sawyer.

The author ravishes the book with a charm that makes the readers turn the pages desperately, wishing it would never end, and when finished the book; the disappointment of nothing-more-to-read was highly crucifying my reading senses.

This author alienated me from this time to the days when Okonkwo breathed the soul of Africa and spoke the spirit of the same.

Thanks, Chinua Achebe…!



Who Was The Last Man In Tower???


As soon as I started reading ‘The Last Man in Tower’, written by the effervescent, soul-deeming and dark humour bound Aravind Adiga, I was sure, it would another spell-bound cracker and my intrusions didn’t deceived me, at least not the hosiery of my 20yr old common sense. And as soon before reaching 100 pages or so,
I was really overwhelmed by the author’s efforts to implicate the never-Before-Used-Way-Of-Storytelling which I’ve never found in the genre of Indian authors. And well soon before I hung up the book, this story plotted by the much-talented Adiga had already baffled me with a souvenir for reading – “who was actually the Last man in tower??”

The story depicts the insurgent greed for money, salient thirst for freedom as well as, at some points, the silhouette of a common Indian. In brief, the story shows the life of some middle-class Indians living in a green-oiled, leech-stricken apartments, at the skirts of Mumbai, and how it changed when a big corporate builder Mr.Shah bullied them with a fortune of their life time. It goes like a fantasy story for all immigrants of the building, but one man stood alone from the rest of the crew and he was Mr.Yogesh Murthy, a retired teacher always deemed with the recipe of physics. He stood his ground, nevertheless from the advice, plea and menace of his neighbours and the builder. But his defiance was broken at the end as his own ‘lovely neighbours’ banged his head with a hammer and pushed him from the top of the tower..!!

Now the question pops up..!! Who was actually the last man in tower??

And the cliché is “is there really a last man??”

For me, unlike the author, Mr.Murthy could’ve been a resident of the bottom floor, because his unwillingness to leave the building was his shrewd persistence of the respect he was beholding rather than his need for one to be free. With signing the permission he could’ve been saving the pleasure of all the residents.

Mr.Pinto and Mrs.Pinto was following Mr.Murthy at the beginning but later they too fell for the inceptive notions of a better standard of living, even at their late 60’s. Behind the likes of the Pintos, Mr.Kudwa, Mrs.Puri, Mrs.Rego were all on the major side of the battle so they all got a pass to the tower, but only in the lower floors

Mr.Ajwani who played the shabby melodrama of threat for Mr.Murthy at the initial stages, regretted for his actions and tried to secure the life of our old teacher at the end, but was par late. He may be getting one of the top floor.

Mr.Shah, the obese builder with gutka stained teeth was not a resident of the Vishram society but his brutal ideas of getting the ‘simple work done’ by the natives of the building leaves him in the topmost floor(along with his assistant, Mr.Shanmugam-although he’s somewhere in a middle floor).

And my fellow readers, the tower in which all these people are residing, I’ve named it as “The Tower of Judgement” and you may call it as “the Tower of Indian Shame”.

But there is still a paradox. Dead people cannot be outrunned.So at the terrace of this tower we may see Purnima, the late wife of Mr.Murthy. In that case, Mr.Adiga, the name of this book should be “The Last Woman in Tower”.


What ‘The motorcycle Diaries” left in me…???


I was deemed up to read ‘The motorcycle diaries’ by Ernesto Che Guevara, reverently called as ‘Che’ by people all over the world for time since the day I turned to be a Communist idealist. Last Thursday, I got the latest edition of this book and as soon as I started reading this, I could picture up the tenderness and humanity behind the so called iron heart of this Rosario born Revolutionary. Courage, Intelligence, plodding behaviour, implausible ideas and there’s one thing about Che which the historians failed to inscribe on the tiles of Eternity-his love for humanity. And  This page-turner is all about those.

This humanitarian’s placid and slap-happy journey right through the heart of Latin America reveals the need for such a revolutionary at that time. The role of his fellow comrades, Alberto Granado and La Poderosa,a 500cc Norton, in this journey is indispensable as they were being something entirely else than what you could anticipate.

The book starts with handful of wits, jolly scenarios (except some rash bruises from falling of La Poderosa) and as soon the plot turns up to the harsh, pathetic and heart dropping visions of the poor Americans, especially the proletariats. Considering the setbacks Che and Granado faced during the expedition leaves such an idea impossible for the ordinary. Leaving the motorcycle behind, lack of resources, shades and shelter, deplorable fettles of transportation, vulnerable set up of funds,  and the list goes on but the highlight among those is his never ending hype of along born Asthma.

The way of story-telling Che deployed is stone for stone and leaf for leaf. The descriptions are so mind tracing and eye catching that I got a vague feeling of sightseeing the likes of Argentina, the hospitality of Chile, The tradition of peru and not the least, the hunger of Venezuela. For sake of myself, the walk of those two through the Chilean mines not wasting the heavy sunrays, not even for their eyes, left me in a frying pan of which a break is not possible

These 160 pages guide us well thrashing the earlier set boards of brutality and hardness. And among what others don’t know, or never tried to knew, Che was a great footballer as well. And after finishing the book I sympathize for the blunt historians whom flaunt Che as a thirsty Murderer and not as a meek revolutionary.

Che is more than just those 3 letters