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|Evoked Déjà vu !!|
Title: Down The Road
Edited by: Ahmed Faiyaz and Rohini Kejriwal
Publisher: Grey Oak Westland
Price: Rs. 195
Genre: Campus Fiction- Short Stories
Down The Road is an eclectic compilation of twenty eight campus tales by sixteen authors. Some writers, some bloggers and some even writing for the first time. A small bunch are still living their campus lives in different parts of the country right now and that made their stories a little extra niche above the others. The whole flavor of the book binds you and impatiently wants you to move to the next one in store. It couldn't have been titled more aptly. I finished with college last year and this book evoked waves of déjà vu for me.
Caffeinated long assignments, punishments, a look here, a smile there, jumping at the sight of food like you're kept starved at home, fighting, crying, laughing your brains out, breaking up, little sweet gestures and then patching up, bunking just because you feel like it today, that first porn video you accidently saw in your friend's phone, that first stolen kiss, ragging and getting ragged, dressing everyday like you're running to meet your biggest enemy, shopping all kind of crap, crushing over the disturbingly handsome programming professor, nudging him into a laughter, xeroxing notes, doodling little hearts all over his oh-so-pretty notebook during the lecture, studying a day before the sessionals, cheating, failing terms and still not letting them affect the next days plans, missing classes every friday to catch the latest, and not to forget, the lamest release, celebrating everybody's birthday with equal enthusiasm, you and your bff bitching evil and nasty things.
Heaven it was. Our very own.
Heaven it was. Our very own.
Ahmed Faiyaz is a writer with substance and he has proved this time and again in this book. Its divided into sections for the reader to grasp its purpose more clearly. Although Knockout had a confused end for me but I praise Ahmed for the rest. But Paritosh Uttam stole the limelight for me. Sororicide was touching and showed that people may choose to show you one part of them but that doesn't mean they have nothing more to them. A young school teacher is handed a bunch of bratty kids to handle. Her awkward hands dangling by her side conveyed much more than Paritosh might have meant to. Although the books mentions that Between Friends has been repeated from Urban Shots but I don't see a valid justification there. The first section Attendance is Compulsory is more of a fun roller coaster which also contains the lovable Smells Like Home. Ira Trivedi's Rishi And Me was built on teenage betrayal and it turned out really well. I was sad and sorry for her characters. But then again, her second The Music Room was even better. Read this book for her if nothing else.
The unmistakable character description by all these wonderful authors was a high for me. The stories ranged from excellent to good to bad to boring but all in all I don't think I can complain. Remember Me ? is a mere promotion of Another Chance by Ahmed Faiyaz but then again he can't blamed for that. If, by God's grace, I get my work published someday, I know it in my bones that I'd promote myself shamelessly at any and every provided opportunity. The second section deals with much mature issues like Placements, Politics and College festivals. The Cafe With no Name was a mature innocent tale. It couldn't have been better.The Worm That Turned by Malathi Jaikumar steals the show in Lights Out. Fiction on Campus was not as good as it promised it to be.
My Rating: 3.5 on 5
You can buy it at Flipkart.com here.