Sunday, September 7, 2014

Bubble Wrap Review: A well-deserved assault on society

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Book: Bubble Wrap
Author: Kalyani Rao
Publisher: Harlequin
Genre: Fiction
Number of pages: 185
Cover Price: Rs 250
Rating: 3 out of 5

Review: The first thing that delights the mind is the cover pic which is eloquent, powerful and picturesque, not to forget relevant and engaging. Second good thing about the book is that its publisher is a more notable one in this world teeming with a sudden mushrooming of publishers and self-publication firms. The third good thing is that the story is not what the title suggests. 
“Bubble Wrap” may ostensibly appear like another bubble-gum college romance (a genre which has become the favorites with readers and sadly with publishers too). But “Bubble Wrap” is everything but a cheesy college romance.

It is a touching and realistic story of a young girl (Krishna) who gets married off even before she hits puberty. The setting of a small town, the plot revolving around the theme of child marriage and the society’s hypocritical and callous take on widows are the reasons why this book is worth a read.

Also, the fact that the 12-year old Krishna (the girl who gets married off at such a tender age) takes the role of the narrator and the readers see her world through her eyes is a winner. Her cousin’s widow Gudiya (slightly older at 15) assumes the role of her mentor and despite the mud which society flings at her widowed status and despite getting raped by an old man, she shoulders the courage of shielding the 12-year Krishna from similar torments. They escape!

The second half goes slightly wayward as the plot thins though the reader does not lose his grip over the book. One must not dissect ‘Bubble Wrap” from the perspective of plot or of narration or of language which are simple and staid, but rather from the perspective of the bold story-telling which is a brutal and well-deserved assault on the society.

The job done by author Kalyani Rao is a credible one because she maintains simplicity and innocence in language which reflect the thought process of the juvenile narrator. Perhaps, the second half could have been tauter but the shocking climax more than makes up for the languidness. The book will not stay with you till ‘forever’ but will stir a few emotions and make you sigh as you turn over the last leaf.

-Ritesh Agarwal

The book is available at throwaway price at Flipkart. Kindly use the below link to check it out. 

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