Troubling Twenties

Something we’ve all been through and still are. Follow the girl, she makes a lot of sense.

Troubling Twenties.

Week One: The Rozabal Line by Ashwin Sanghi.

Short Mein Bole Toh: The book felt like I’m lost on Wikipedia, clicking article after article through links and inter links; finally forgetting what the original point was.
If you’ve time then read the rest of my opinion of the book.
Desi Dan Brown. Long stories. Great research. Funny. Don’t read.
Those were some of the reactions I received when I announced that I was planning to read Ashwin Sanghi’s The Rozabal Line.
Let’s rewind a bit. I got the three books by Sanghi a little after Diwali last year just to see what was it that people were talking about! Itna hype kyun?! Then I wondered if I should read Krishna Key or Chanakya’s Chant or The Rozabal Line first. I decided to read his first novel for two simple reasons:
  1. Hmm.. this book takes up the missing years of Christ and brings him to India. That’s new, should try this book.
  2. Too much overdose about Krishna and Mahabharat; and I know literally nothing about Chanakya. So why not read about Jesus, who has been written about so widely that there is nothing new to say!

Boy was I wrong. Thanks to a misrepresented assignment in my first year of BMM, a classmate had said to the class that Jesus was in India and we had laughed. The professor included. What she said that day, came from the book Jesus Lived in India by Holger Kersten, I suppose. Every time I was reading a new line, I was reminded of something from her assignment. Obviously, that’s where Sanghi’s story was inspired from as well. 
As for nothing new being there to say, let’s just say that I lost it when the book said Mary Magdalene was from Magadh. If that’s new, I think we should totally throw the term “new” out. There’s a thin line of difference between new interesting and new ridiculous.
The book is gripping but shifts between periods in history and myth too rapidly for my taste. I barely understood what happened to someone in Jerusalem during Christ’s crucifixion that I was thrown into present time Afghanistan or London. Characters going into past life, discovering secrets of mankind, Dead Sea scrolls, Buddhist monasteries in Ladakh, Vatican City, the Sossoons (Same Jewish family of David Sassoon I suppose) in England etc. are thrown into one huge cauldron expecting a broth that is delicious simply because it has all the rich ingredients.
What it ends up as: Parmesan cheese grated on top of rasamrice. It may work for you, but certainly not for me!
A book with a typo on the back cover?
(Violent as voilent)
After a while, the book got so tedious that I started counting the number of typos and errors in the book. Needless to say, there are many! (See my book copy’s picture) However, that wasn’t what irked me the most. 
The simplification of the concept of Karma, is a little too stretched in the book. (Bookhad explains this better by using math language/sign/symbols I will never understand. Link at the end of the review.) Someone was treated so and so in a previous life and hence in this life will be with that person with good taking over or justice being served or whatever. I couldn’t care less because it was just too convenient as a plot device.
All said and done, I have to acknowledge Sanghi’s thorough research. The book is sprinkled with Greek, Latin, Hebrew phrases along with countless obscure references to texts and events around the planet. All of which is true and credible. Then again, I started to imagine the author sitting with a huge white board and Encyclopedia/History of the World open with Wikipedia open on the laptop and drawing a link between random events.
All in all, this wasn’t the best book to start neither the year nor my challenge with. But it’s done now. Needless to say, I am not going anywhere near the other two books any time soon. I’d rather sit and read C. Rajagopalachari’s Mahabharat again. It’s complex, but not as farfetched.
Who should read: If you love Dan Brown novels and want to see a desi rip off. Possess immense patience and want to try an Indian author of popular fiction who is not named Chetan Bhagat.
Who Should not read: If you’re like me. You demand a good book! And /Or are sad to see a plot line with good potential go waste.

If you want a proper review of the book and not the opinion of a crazed 22-year-old book lover then you can read it here on BookHad.

Ramblings and Randomness…

Two years back around this time I was preparing for the “boards”, like it was the biggest achievement of my life. Now, I’ve cleared them, survived two years (almost) in the under graduate world and now I am thinking of the next exam to come up. NEXT YEAR.

Is it just me or are all of our lives revolving around passing the next hurdle in life that we’ve quit thinking of the time in between? I have a life, I roam, watch movies, listen to music, hang out etc. But has the sliver of tension ever left me? No.

Sixteen years back, around this time, I didn’t know the difference between a penguin, peacock and a mynah. I didn’t care! I cried out “penguin!” when we would pass by mynahs on the building parapet. Today I fret over  ’s and s’ used in the wrong place. I can’t stand a person with wrong grammar, seriously is it so tough to speak properly? Distracted.

The headache’s been on for 3 days now, and I am editing a news bulletin, not knowing in what way is it EVER going to help me (At least penguins peacocks did help!). There is renovation on next door, and I could murder the workers who’re breaking the walls there. Pabo sings… “Muskuraaoon kabhi toh lagta hain jaise hoton pe karz rakha hain…”  Talking about ironies…

I am getting off the deadline circuit for now! J I have decided to convince Mr. Kautuk Vishal Bharadwaj Srivastav to cast me in Janardhan Caeserchand as the lead and the scriptwriter, the cinematographer, the lyricist, the AD and the DoP if possible. I’m going to steal a Russian folk song as my “inspiration”, call it Sweethearrrrrrrrrrrt and then dance in it in a ghaghra choli… J Have Asha Bhosale do a jugalbandi with Devangg Patel and then lip sync both voices.

In short I’m on the brink of losing my sanity! And frankly, random ramblings do bring out clarity. I am clear now. I want my birthday pre-poned! I want books, clothes and chocolates for my birthday. I am celebrating an Anniversary today, so I should get lots of phone calls to survive two years post HSC! J

What’s this post about? Ramblings and randomness. You know that. But there is an anniversary today, and I am proud of it…

Okay, so the movie’s rendered now, I am back to editing the news bulletin, I have a deadline to keep you know? 😛

The work that I’m doing right now…seems fancy eh?

P.S. The only thing I can be high on is happiness.
P.P.S. I am happy! 😀
P.P.S. First post that’s less than 500 words!