Saturday, May 24, 2014

#BookReview: Transactions of Belongings by Jaya Padmanabham

On the jacket:

 The short stories in the collection blend emotion and introspection. Moments of urgency and sweetness are fully canvassed and explored. The stories draw out and examine the texture of emotional belonging. In "His Curls," a mother suffers the anguish of wondering if her son is a terrorist. The ending is left to interpretation and several possibilities. The reader is forced to teeter between laughter and sadness in the tragicomedy of "An Indian Summer." "The Blue Arc" is a redemptive tale of a young woman who shows enormous courage. Each story in the collection is a journey of insights. Transactions of Belonging is a unique, intense and gripping work of short fiction.  "In this debut collection, Jaya Padmanabhan has brought together a diverse and memorable group of characters from many kinds of backgrounds. With meticulous details and keen observation, she brings them to life and makes us care about them-their poverty, their loneliness, their tragedies and their triumphs."-CHITRA DIVAKARUNI, author of The Mistress of Spices and Oleander Girl.


An anthology of twelve short stories, Transactions of Belongings by Jaya Padmanabhan is a beautiful bouquet of human emotions. A attempt to write short stories in one's debut book, is a very daring attempt, in m opinion. However. Padmanabhan has touched all the right chords and explored the correct emotions, making every story exemplary.  

In a collection of twelve short stories, my personal favourite is Indian Summer, a story of teenage girl and her trouble relationship with her mother.Very gripping tales, they manage to involve you in the plot, body and soul. The Blue Arc is heartening, to say the least. Strapped For Time is about an old man and the sexual tension he shares with his maid. We also have a mother being torment with the idea of her son being a terrorist in His Curls.

Rating: *****/5

[This review is for Leadstart Publishing. The opinions are strictly my own and not been written under any obligation.]

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