Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Memsaheb and the Thief by Chandra Ghosh Jain

The ten tales in Memsaheb and the Thief are a collection of stories that make the reader travel from rural India, small towns and the great metropolis with ease.

In Memsaheb and the thief, life as a pampered daughter and wife had been easy for Simran. As a Memsaheb she is fond of Hindi film songs and sings one befitting each situation in her life. But somewhere along the way, she finds herself alone with only a thief for company…

Politics of the Virtuous shows us how the innocents are betrayed and misled…
The loneliness of a career woman is captured in the Net as Netting?

The allure of power associated with politics can undermine all relationships and loyalties as Kolya the hapless son discovers in the Cadaverous Chief.

The stories are often less than linear in structure; and they have a knack for the ungracious character - the one who gets kicked under the table, argued with, and often sighed over. The tales present such people in all their irascibility and mess, and then somehow like those psychologists who prove that pessimists have a more accurate view of reality than their optimistic and normal counterparts.

By the end the tales reveal the cranks' greater humanity and even make the "better" characters seem cardboard in comparison.

This is a collection of stories of anger and bitterness, love and loss, loneliness, change, oppression, grief, endurance, fear and death. They move one through a gamut of emotions but most importantly they move the reader to give a cry of recognition - yes this is what it feels like being a human in this way, time and time again.

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