Wednesday, August 5, 2020

A Second Chance by Sudeep Nagarkar (Book Review: 3*/5) !!!

24th Book of 2020!

When I had started reading books a decade back, I always loved reading the debutante Indian writers. I don’t know why but I felt that these authors wrote with heart – then and even now. And mostly, all the books I read during those days were love stories and it continued for next 4-5 years after which the next set of writers that came up with their 1st book were on different topics such as mythology, historical fiction or quite in-depth emotions. But there is a kind of emotion which got developed with the first few writers I read and Sudeep Nagarkar is one of them. I had read his 1st book and saw him developing as a Bestselling author with 12 book titles under his name. I have just completed reading his latest release which is his 13th book named “A Second Chance” released just yesterday itself.

The book speaks about the protagonist – Disha majorly who is a girl suffering through mental issues right from her childhood due to her parent’s disturbed relationship, their treatment with her, her bad luck at school etc. She has only thing constant in her life that is her friend – Kajal. Finally, she falls in love with a classmate which just makes her life more miserable and few things happen here and there (not disclosing to avoid spoilers) and she is being made to go through the process of Arranged Marriage. The book starts with her concern regarding Arranged Marriage with which I could relate so much. I believe Sudeep set the right segment to initiate the book with as it talks about the trauma and dilemma every young boy and girl has to go through because of the confusions and panic they have regarding setting up with a stranger for rest of their lives.

The narration of the book is simple and written in Sudeep Nagarkar’s style itself which he has carried right since his 1st book with which the youth and his readers connects with him. This is a book which talks mostly about the school and college-days romance where you might not find something great happening but in the 2nd half of the book when the story moves further and the dilemma of marriage begins is where the characterization of Disha is utilized nicely. I liked how Sudeep has taken the story post-marriage and this is where I found him speaking his thoughts regarding how ideal a married life should be in today’s time. The role of in-laws, how a husband should treat his wife on the first night, how the relationship is grown gradually day-by-day and how there shouldn’t be any secrets between the two in order to keep the bond pure and lively. This is a topic which deserves to be spoken to the new generation.

Rather than being directly preachy, Sudeep has tried to speak things in the thoughts that Disha writes or thinks in the italic font throughout the book. Also, the pre-climax and climax has a proper ending rather than keeping anything open or purposefully sad in order to get empathy from readers for the character who loses out. The characterizations of Raghav, Kajal, Dhruv, his parents and Disha’s parents are also done nicely and you can relate with them. The nice edit of the book as it has been summed up in within 225 pages is another great factor which makes this book a light and short read.

Talking about the drawbacks of the book- I feel that the story could have had more layers and it should have involved more sub-plots and intense conversations – currently, I found it to be quite simple considering that few of Sudeep’s previous books had great layers hence there were certain expectations. The way the book starts- I felt I shall be made familiar with many such youth traumas, but I could not find much after that. There are still few clichés that has been used in defining the emotion of love which I believe could have been narrated in more deepening manner. The character of Kajal should have been used more and involved with the main story. I found the narration to be old-school and was wondering why the author did not write it little more aggressive discussing lot of things youth indulges in these days.

Overall, this is a nice attempt considering the target audience of Sudeep Nagarkar as this story speaks of strengthening the bond of marriage and relationship whereas the new generation these days does not believe in the institution of marriage. This is something for which I would like to appreciate Sudeep’s intention as this shall surely change views of some of the readers at least. I give the book 3 stars out of 5.




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