Monday, July 8, 2013

Book Review: India Was One by An Indian

On the jacket:

…Suddenly, he saw something shiny at the bottom of the abyss. He squinted his eyes to see what it was. He ran back to his binoculars and turned them to see what it was. Sharp barbed wires that separated the two mountains came into focus. He had come as far as he could in his country. But she was standing in another country.

He was in South India and she was in North India…

Have you ever imagined India being divided into two countries? What happens to the millions of Indians who are from South India but are now residing in North India? Kaahi & Jai were two such people who got trapped in this situation. Everything was going smoothly for them and suddenly, their world turned upside down.

How will they get together? Will India become one again?

Take an exciting journey with them from their college days in Mumbai to their life in the US and back to India when they find out that India is divided.


A simple love story, between a boy and a girl, weaved with a lot of facts about India, something that would really appeal someone who wants to add to his knowledge about this country. The love story doesn't have a lot going about it, by itself. What, to me, worked wonders, was how nicely India is described. The author has explained situations and emotions very nicely and with utmost ease, and a lot of events mentioned, are something, most of us resident Indians would identify with.

What the title had led me to believe was, that the book is about the past - about un-partitioned India. But no, here is the twist. The couple, Vijay and Kahani, after their married, move to the US and trying to settle, when suddenly news flashed that India, today's India has been divided into two - north and south. They come back, to look for their parents, to find the entire nation in chaos. Here, you cannot help and wonder...what if? Arguments between north and south Indians are age old, yet still fresh. What is such a partition really happens? *shudder* 

As we can expect, even imagining what if this happened, hell had broken lose, when Vijay and Kahani come back to India. Shut downs, economy was at it's lowest, and basically, everything that could go wrong, went wrong. The terrorist attacks in Mumbai  The climax, is worth reading the entire book for! 

Characters have been well-formed, and their actions justified by their characteristics. A few clichéd situations do exist in the plot, but that can easily be overseen by the easy flow of words with which the author has spun this tale. 

What is special about the book, is you can feel the care that has been taken to write this book. Loved how the content page depicts the various chapters, and how Hindi words have been used liberally, and the translation right there. So are the informations about India. I loved how some texts are in italics. (eg) when the author is talking about Hotel TajMahal in Colaba, Mumbai, he has included two paragraphs in italics, about it's history. 

Rating: ****/5

[This is an author request review, however, the opinions expressed are honest views and my own.]

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