Saturday, February 9, 2013

'B' Goddess for Dummies - A review

Oh ok!! I still can't make myself say the B***** word!

Not that I am a prude or anything - far from that. Believe me if you heard me while I manoeuvre the Delhi roads, you'd send me for the audition of the 'Roadies'.

Blame this (new found) squeamishness on the 'Mommy syndrome'. I cannot, try as I might, write or say words that I cannot use in front of the kiddos. Hey, but that doesn't mean that I have a problem with this particular word - I have successfully, in the past, used them to good effect - especially at workplace :-).

It was a pleasant surprise when Maya Sharma Sriram wrote in to ask if I'd like to review her book. Ofcourse I was ecstatic - in no small measure, because this also stoked my waning ego as a blogger. So here is the review, a la Nirvana

The first look : Its a Rupa publication book, with an interesting cartoon for the cover, which gives you the hint of the sense of humour you'd find in the book.



Plot : While the world may want to mock chick lit novels, the truth is that they are a force to contend with; and for good reason - most of them are pages out of real life, and most of the readers (especially women readers) would have that moment of deja vu in these novels. This novel is no different in that aspect - there are pages in there which look like scenes straight out of my office or my home.

The story revolves around a young woman with career aspirations and the competence to see the aspirations through, but with an element of 'goodness' in her which seems to hamper her perceived growth  - both in personal and professional life. So she decides to take charge, and change all that. Whether she succeeds or not, and whether it is indeed the new avatar that works for her is what the story is all about.

Set in two cities - Singapore and Chennai, it explores the feelings of a vulnerable woman who wants to take charge of her life. Nothing exceptional in that situation - except that the whole approach to the novel is with a pinch of salt, a dash of Worcestershire sauce and even a shot of vodka (what the heck!) which makes the book a completely refreshing read.

Writing style : Sometimes when you read the book, you forget you are reading, and are probably watching a movie - a bollywood movie at that! What I mean is that the book is easy to comprehend, with no heavy duty words acting as speed breakers in the reading speed. Which means this is something to read when you want to just laze out in the winter sun, with a hot cup of coffee, on a chaise lounge - with occasional giggling bouts.

The South Indian influence is evident in the book - and brings back memories of filter coffees, hot pakoras and absurd phone conversations with my mother. Again - something that every woman fondly remembers.

The author brings in an element of modern romance, but somewhere, there is a certain awkwardness in depicting love scenes - which is not uncommon in Indian writers. Maybe she could have avoided them, or only have notional depiction if required. There were a few jarring pararagraphs which seemed forced.

Another aspect which somehow, seems a tad too convenient - was that the love story seemed like a match made in heaven from the first meeting - from the religion to the industry...... Or maybe I am just jealous that the protagonist had it too easy :-)

Character Development : The author gets brownie points on this aspect. From clothing styles to hairstyles and quirks, you get a definite visual of the characters (remember I said it was like watching a movie?).

Also the transformation of the protagonist - the physical one, is very vivid. A certain amount of stereotyping does happen (the office b**** wears revealing but stunning outfits etc etc) but what the heck! Most of us have seen people like that haven't we?

Final Verdict : An easy on the mind, but entertaining read for a lazy afternoon. You will want to read the book cover to cover, but it is not a book that will demand your grey cells to work overtime. I read it intermittently, during a holiday, and it was easy to pick up from where I had left it (this is a boon for mothers, who get constant SOS calls from the kids). Oh! And do prepare for a few giggles that will escape your lips while reading. 

13 comments:

  1. have heard quite a few good reviews on this one.. will keep an eye out :D

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    1. Its a breezy one time read, which had me giggling like a college kid sometimes :-)

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  2. I love the title!! Even the cover is attractive. Would pick it up when I come to India :)

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    1. It is quite a saucy read, Nisha ....

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  3. Aaah, titles that shock... now where hv I heard tht one before...? ;)


    fc*klove

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    1. hehehe!!! someday, RAJ, I will tell you my reaction when clicked on an interesting lookng article and it landed on your blog, with the title screaming loud :-D .... and I was in the office

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  4. The cover is very interesting. I think I will check it out :)

    -Jas

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    1. Yeah! interesting it is. Thanks for coming by Jas.

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  5. Not a comment about your post, I'm afraid! I tagged you: http://www.bigaandlittlea.com/2013/02/twenty-questions-actually-morein-case.html! Have fun!!

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    1. thanks Roshni.... looks like a lot of fun!

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  6. I loved the title of the book. :)
    I have heard good things about it. Will keep it on my radar.

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    1. hehehe...... I know Amit, quite a few who love the title :-)

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    Team Scooze

    ReplyDelete