Friday, January 25, 2013
Rakesh's Story by Malika Gandhi
I was asked to review this book, and I was happy to do so. Amazon lists this book at 48 pages so it's a short read, but it took me more than just a couple hours to read it. Getting my own book ready to go was a major obstacle to reading anything here recently.
But here it is, my review, finally:
Malika, the author, was born in India, but she has spent the vast majority of her life in the UK. It is obvious the ties to her homeland are still strong. She is a very talented story-teller, but I feel she could do better. One gets better with practice and it is my belief that she will go far with practice and the proper feedback.
The story is about a young man named Rakesh who follows his brother, Dilip, on a revolt against the white occupiers. The date is August 1942. I can't tell for sure, but I think this might be a true story. Don't quote me on that though.
I have never been to India and I don't really know anything about the country or its people or customs. Not really. I've seen pictures and such, but really, aside from being able to point to it on the map, I'm pretty clueless about it all.
I rated this book with only 3 stars because I feel it could have been so much better. It is a beautifully written tale with a lot of tears, but I didn't feel any passion. These men, these families were passionate about freeing their country from their oppressors; I could tell, but I just couldn't feel it. They went from secret place to secret place to meet and plan what to do and when. And therein is another thing missing from this book - background - scenery - sights - sounds - smells. Like I said, I don't know much about India and Malika failed to take me there.