July 05, 2015

Book Review: Love, Again by Shrruti Patole Clarence and Sumeetha Manikandan


Author (s): Shrruti Patole Clarence and Sumeetha Manikandan
Publisher: Half Baked Beans
Rating: 3.5/5

“Love, again” is for the die-hard romantics. The blurb is self explanatory. The book is different from the other novellas, in a way that it provides twice the pleasure and happiness of reading romantic fiction. This is because there are two heart warming stories in the book. The first tale, “These lines of mehendi”, revolves around Lalitha, who is adaptive, conscientious but a victim of her own fate. After going through a collapsed marriage and the sudden demise of her husband and she learns to live within her means. She runs a beauty parlour to provide for herself. But when her aunt Padma tries to coax her to enter into a “marriage of convenience” with Shrikant, she gives in, because it is equivalent to a port in any storm. Unable to argue the toss, she remarries. On the other hand, is Shrikant, who was left at the altar just a month before his wedding. Owing to the heat of the situation and the constant emotional turmoil, Shrikant wants a “marriage of convenience”, wherein there will be no expectations, no commitments and no physical or emotional touch in the relationship. Will Lalitha and Shrikant find their love, again? Read on, to know more!

The second tale, “A tulip in the desert”, is a tale set on the foreign grounds (Amsterdam). With a flavour of Egyptian History, the story revolves around Charmaine, who is independent, smart and iron willed. Charmaine dives into the world of Cleopatra and the other events of Egyptian history though she reads history for the very first time. And then destiny plays its role and Raj barges into her life. Does cupid strike Charmaine’s heart? How does Raj manage to choose between his love and the history? Read on, to know more!

My opinion
“Love, again” is a delightful read. The cover is picturesque, with all the dreamy colors and the title is self explanatory. The first story, “These lines of mehendi”, has been beautifully crafted but is predictable to a large extent. The narration is lucid, the expressions and dialogues give life to the characters. Lalitha is the protagonist opposite to Shrikant and both the characters balance each other pretty well. The content is grammatically correct. The author has successfully portrayed a character of a strong woman, whose husband, in some way, cuts the ground from under her feet, but still she learns to survive on her own. Overall, a delightful story!
The second story, “A tulip in the desert”, is different in the way that it includes the flavor of Egyptian history too. The author has done sufficient research on Cleopatra and the twists and turn of events in the story keep the reader’s attention intact. The descriptions are picturesque and the plot has adventure mixed with strong emotions. This is one filmic story which leaves the readers wanting for more (A hint for the author to try converting this into a full fledged novella). The author has created a perfect balance between the personalities of the protagonists making it, altogether, an interesting read.
Kudos to both the authors!

The major drawback in this book is the presence of ambiguous sentences which force the reader to read them twice or thrice to understand what is being said. One can encounter typing errors and proofreading errors time and again.

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