Friday, June 17, 2016

Book Review #43: Six Degrees

Name: Six Degrees
Author: Various
No. of Pages: 422
Genre: Fiction
Price: Rs. 349/-
Published in: 2016

How did I get it? From BlogAdda.com

The blurb of the book says:
“As part of their #CelebrateBlogging initiative, BlogAdda.com, ran the first edition of Game of Blogs in September 2014. Five characters and their descriptions were provided. The objective was to write a fictional story revolving around these characters. Bloggers came together as teams and after three rounds filled with its own set of twists and turns, three stories made it to the end.

The three stories in this book are a fascinating example of how one set of characters can have interesting lives with completely different dimensions. is a result of how collaboration can truly breed creativity in the modern day world of connected living.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Six Degrees, is the first book co-authored by 3 teams, consisting of 25 bloggers across India. For the first time in the history of Indian blogging, bloggers collaborated and worked to write a story based on the characters and twists given by BlogAdda, periodically.

MY THOUGHTS: 
The backdrop city is Mumbai. A common quote, "I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be."  The 5 common characters:
  1. Shekhar Dutta-- An unsuccessful/out-of-work writer, stay-at-home husband/father
  2. Tara Dutta-- Shekhar's wife, a successful career woman
  3. Roohi Dutta-- Shekhar and Tara's 9 year old daughter
  4. Aryan Ahuja-- Neighbour of the Dutta's
  5. Cyrus Daruwala-- A law student from Delhi, comes to Mumbai and enters the lives of the Dutta's with a purpose
  6. Jennifer Joseph-- A professional photographer, a young and beautiful Malayali girl, who gets connected to the story of the Dutta's
Story #1: THE AWAKENING
Plot: Shekhar, Tara and Roohi form a close-knit happy and loving family. Cyrus enters their home and things get disturbed. Shekhar's manuscript is getting destroyed on its own. Jennifer, the childhood friend of Shekhar, gives him groundbreaking news. Mysteries surface and the entire world is at stake.

I loved this story. The central characters , as well as the supporting characters were well-formed and pieces were connected very well. The plot is that of a sci-fi mystery and seemed like a rendition of popular sci-fi movies involving aliens. What Shekhar was seeking was right there in front of him, and later selfishness takes hold of him. With the help of Roohi and Cyrus, Tara finally re-discovers herself, and they all come together to save the world. Aryan shows that there is still hope in the human race. But their lives are no longer the way they knew it.

Story #2: ENTANGLED LIVES
Plot: Tara is successful, while Shekhar is not. Roohi loves her dad as he is always around while Tara has no time for her. Naina, the full-time maid enjoys dressing up in Tara's stuff. Cyrus comes to Mumbai with vengeance on his mind. Jennifer is desperate  to be successful. And then there is a murder.

I enjoyed this story as well. Again, the dots were connected beautifully and the characters well defined. Java, the investigating officer, was an interesting character too. But the two devils in his mind bickered too much at times. I loved the malicious poems echoing the killer's emotions from time to time. I had one doubt though. The fingerprints of the person who gets punished for the murder, were not on the weapon. So why was that point not used to oppose the arrest? But overall, it was a well-written piece.

Story #3: MISSING--A JOURNEY WITHIN
Plot: Roohi goes missing after school. Cyrus flees Delhi and comes to Mumbai. Jennifer plays a role in the search of Roohi. Shekhar and Tara rekindles their love when faced with adversities.

I didn't like this one. The blurb of the story at the start was very misleading. The central characters, except Cyrus, were not well-formed. There were many gaps in the story-line too. Cyrus's height was mentioned at two places and both were different. Cyrus heard a line about Roohi at Delhi and meets her almost immediately on reaching Mumbai; but it seems he doesn't realize it's the same girl. What he had scribbled on the back of a visiting card, was not explained properly. Why did Aryan behave in a suspicious manner when Jennifer asked him if he knew Cyrus? What had Jennifer misunderstood about him? Why people were knocking at the neighbour's door instead of Aryan when they clearly had the address.

Overall: It is really a remarkable effort and result, given that the stories were co-written by 8/9 authors. It is also interesting how a given set of characters have been used in entirely different directions. Since it is not the work of a single author, the style of writing was not entirely similar throughout a single story. Also, there were many, many typos; and typos really irritate me as a reader. ' were typed as > in most places and letters were missing from words.

As already mentioned, I loved the first two stories. They reflected that the whole assignments were well-executed. But I can't say the same about the last story.

I give "Six Degrees" 3.5 stars on a scale of 5.

6 Degrees is India's first book published through collaborative blogging, written completely by bloggers for the Game of Blogs activity at BlogAdda. Know more about Game of Blogs here. You can buy 6 Degrees: Game of Blogs if you liked the review. :)

This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books!


2 comments:

  1. Hi Natasha,
    Thank you so much for the kind review specially for Entangled Lives. And to answer your doubt, Jenny was arrested based on her confession. The knife was discarded as an evidence quickly because it was the common house knife and everyone's finger print were on it. Including Jenny, Tara, Shekhar, Roohi and the maids. Only Cyrus's finger print weren't in it. Coz he never went to the kitchen. When multiple suspects finger print are found in the murder weapon it is often overlooked as a strong evidence. (I had done the research on this and had spoken to couple of lawyers and a policeman.) :)
    Hope that answers your doubt. And thank you again Natasha for taking out time to write the review for us. - Team PotliwaleBaba

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Shoumik for clarifying. Keep writing.

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