Thursday, April 21, 2016

Book Review #38: Panorama-A Collection of Short Stories

Name: Panorama-A Collection of Short Stories
Author:
Shilpi Chaklanobis 
No. of Pages: 144
Genre: Fiction
Publisher: Notion Press
Price: Rs. 150/-
Published in: 2016

How did I get it? From the author.

The blurb of the book says:
A turbulent relationship between a mother and a daughter takes a sudden turn when the daughter stumbles across a past that she never knew.....

The golden period of a professor’s life is tainted by questions about his purpose until one night gives him all the answers he needs........

Desperate times test us all but when hunger drives a girl to do the unthinkable, her life changes forever..........

Woven around the lives of the people around us – the shy girl on the metro, your domestic help, your neighbors and perhaps even you – this collection of short stories will take you on a bittersweet journey that explores the spectrum that is part of any human relationship and all the complexity and chaos that secretly dwell within the homes and hearts of India.

Often laced with an element of introspection, the stories are sure to change the way you see the world around you…


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Shilpi Chaklanobis hails from the beautiful city of Kanpur and has spent the majority of her adult life in Delhi. She currently heads the Digital Marketing division at an MNC. The amalgamation of her years spent amongst the quiet, calm streets of a small city and the hustle and bustle of a metropolitan like Delhi has lent her a unique perspective towards life. She aims to translate her experiences and understanding of human relationships into stories that not only move people but also resonate with them. She believes that the beauty of a story lies within its ability to be interpreted by the reader in the way they desire as is evident from her writing. Apart from writing, she spends her time devouring books by the dozen. This is her first endeavor as a writer and her writing not only shows promise, but also has a sense of sensitivity that compels you to think about the lives you touch every day.

MY THOUGHTS:
The book is a collection of fifteen short stories. The writing style is plain and at times repetitive. I enjoy reading short stories. But frankly, I was not impressed by the book. Although the plots of the stories were good and had potential, I felt they didn't mature out with proper pace. A few stories were hastened to the end and lacked insight. A few glimpses:

Wok: It is the first of the collection and the only one which I liked. It is about a little girl who couldn't eat curries because her mother couldn't afford to buy a wok.

Bribe: I found the character and thoughts of the protagonist very confusing. He loves his daughter but preferred his newspaper rather than sitting by his sick daughter. He is happy when his tired wife brings him a cup of tea but is fussy when she couldn't cook a dish he likes for dinner.

Forever: I liked this one somewhat too. A pair of young lovers who parted ways due to different goals but their paths cross ways in a unexpected manner.

Mirage: I couldn't comprehend at all how a grown-up girl, who completed her studies and started working, behave in a silly manner. She thinks winning a lottery will bring her father who left her and her mother many years back. And she hates her mother who brought her up single-handed and dotes on her.

I give "Panorama-A Collection of Short Stories" 2 stars on a scale of 5.


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