A Review: Let the Reason be Love.

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Book: Let the Reason be Love

Author: Tuhin A Sinha

Publisher: Rupa Publications

Genre: Love and Relationships

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This remains a conundrum – One that neither technological breakthroughs, nor the most passionate of lovers has managed to unravel. What some may attribute attraction to shared sensibilities or even a karmic connection, the fact remains that love comes without simple answers; it’s damn complicated.”

The blurb on the back cover of soon to be released latest fiction ‘Let the Reason be Love’ by best-selling Author Tuhin A Sinha seizes immediate attention and spawns requisite interest in me.

‘Let the Reason be Love’ is a topical tale of unrequited love and it’s forlornness; a stark version of modern day relationship and the not-so-easy interplay of emotional determinants in different layer and stages of it.
Somewhere the story even pitches to engage into a deeper introspection or dilemma of ‘what actually or truly love is?’ Throughout the saga, the strong emotional undercurrent which effortlessly flows and interweaves an entangled web of carnal passion to soul connection, contentment to heartache, trust to mistrust and even self-realisation to an extent, between the three main characters, weaves an enticing plot to dive into.

The Story:
The protagonist Rishaan and his love interests Kiara and Diya at different point of time and situation make relatable characters with their separate identities and inherent quirks and expectations. But they indeed share a commonality; an ever searching toil of filling the void in each one’s heart.
Rishaan is this dreamy, idealist, middle-classy boy-next-door. He is spontaneous, talented and great fun to be with but could also be extremely disorganised like most other husbands-in-making young men. Kiara as described by author himself is a spunky, liberated, free spirited Bengali bombshell. Someone who lived life with her own terms and brutally honest. Yet amidst the temperamental differences, the two begin their journey of relationship with intense infatuation.
Diya, to the contrary, seemed to be a strong, calm woman who is firmly in control of her life despite the chaos around. There is something very attractive about her femininity too.
Rishaan is drawn to her inwardly. Rather than carnal desires, shared empathy, companionship and long conversations is the basis of their bond. Since Kiara and Diya are bosom friends, how the interpersonal dynamics between the three creates stirring situation and the innermost feelings and universality of human reactions to love, betrayal and hurt is resplendently exhibited through the tale.
The end line of the story quips as :
Rishaan knew that life and Bollywood were indeed capable of throwing up some crazy surprises.”
I would like to disrupt my share of earful on the story here without further divulging any more details, trying not to spoil the reader’s appetite and allowing them to savour the original narration or compelling expression by the writer himself by reading the book itself.

Narrative, Style and My views:
This book was not a conventional pick for me as from past few years I have not indulged myself with fictions much. Yet it provided me an interesting read and sort of treaded me to nostalgia lane.
The simple plot, lucid free-flowing words and the identifiable characters with swift, zesty narrative style makes a light, engaging and easy read for us.
Characters strike a chord with the modern urban metropolitan readers especially Mumbaikars with everyday minute nuances(be it the quirky auto drivers or a smooth-talking boss in loveless marriage) and relationship dynamics being skilfully portrayed.
The beginning of the book will not disappoint the aficionados of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ likes, with expressions of some earthy, impassioned rendezvous between the lead characters.
Though it picks up a better tempo after first few pages but the twist after makes it engrossing quite instantaneously.
The author has added some vernacular lingo and famed movie songs to add his personal style. The book is an absolute page turner but somehow I wanted it to end differently. So there I was, a bit gloomy. But what the heck that’s not my novel or my story and the creative freedom belongs to Tuhin.
Finally, what strike me or made an impression on me is the way the story tried to explore the fragility and vulnerability of human relationship. That we are flawed being and with that comes perfectly imperfect relationships, which we agree or not but somewhere have to acknowledge the fact. No relationship is ‘happily ever after’. But then it’s our individual choice to persevere or not.
If all you want is a light, breezy and effortless but wistful read that takes you through that vulnerable, unpredictable, fallible love lane and expose you to the myriads of warm kindled sensibilities, soak into it. You never know after reading this, you might feel lucky enough for what you have or maybe what you don’t have!

About the Author: Tuhin A. Sinha is a best-selling author, columnist and a scriptwriter. Tuhin is widely acknowledged among the most prolific Indian writers with each of his four previous books, The Edge of Desire, That Thing Called Love, The Captain (formerly 22 Yards) and Of Love and Politics breaking new ground in terms of subject and treatment.
He is also a scriptwriter of several popular TV shows. Apart from his fiction novels and scripts, Tuhin is a keen political observer. His columns on Indian politics appear regularly in India’s leading dailies.

[This is not a paid review. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remains unbiased and uninfluenced.]

Why you don’t want to get married ?

 

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Why you don’t want to get married?
You are 19. This is the right age. The younger you marry, better it is for you.

I wish I could tell you this but I respect you so….with her lips sealed, she broods over ….

“~~~yes I am 19…that enkindles me with a hope.
A hope to fly with my wings to chase my dreams.
A hope to be me and topple and stumble and arise and learn to live fully, by being me.
A hope to explore and to enlighten myself to face this resilient world ahead.
And a hope to grow; grow into a woman well-grounded yet with a voice. ~~~”

You have crossed even 18 now.
When will you have some wisdom?
Why don’t you understand it’s your life?

With a deep sigh yet unruffled demeanour, she ruminates…..

“~~~Yes, I am aware I am above 18(legal age for girls to get married in India). As far as legalities are concerned, are you aware that forced marriage is a violation of fundamental Human Rights? That implies I have the freedom to choose whether I get married or not, when to get married, and whom to get married.

Obviously, marriage will not infuse wisdom into my mind, may be time and life experiences will but how is it concerned with being married or not!
I understand too it’s my life and that’s why I don’t want to comply on this. Getting married is a choice and I reason out that I have the right to make crucial choices about my own life. ~~~”

Don’t you see, Nina already got married and nicely settled in New York. Why it is that you don’t want to get married?

If only I could tell you this aloud but I love you so as it might hurt you..words playing all over her mind, she is thinking….

~~~To make you feel better, perhaps Nina always waited for this Prince Charming from time immemorial. Or may be she was choiceless. This might hurt you though! Now I remember why in the whole world New York was her favourite destination! ~~~”

Haven’t you studied for 15 long years? What is it with all these unnecessary excuses you got? More studies? What is the use of higher studies, when after marriage all you have to do is to raise kids and take care of your family which is so important?

With a heavy heart and sullen face, henceforth she ponders….

 “~~~Oh yes I knew this was coming! Interpretations like this makes me feel numb at one side and on the other to revolt with whatever strength I got. It makes me cry, makes me scream, scream it out. But then I realise that somewhere you have lost your own voice, your own self with years of conditioned mind and prejudiced heart toying all over you. So I feel helpless for you and care to remain speechless.

Fifteen long years..let me rethink….that makes my sweet little brother got only three more years to pursue his education. But how on earth, can he be a doctor or an engineer as much as you desperately want him to be going by this ’15 long years’ logic. Or is it that he is entitled for more than 15 years to seek for whatever he aspires to be!

Now I realise that the scope for any kind of pursuit of knowledge and learning has to be eyed through blue&pink colour scheme(gender specific). How dumb I can get! It’s there for a long long time, so why question? Does it even matter if I say that I am all flesh and blood with a heart and soul too just as much as him!

And the thing you said about family; Raising kids and taking care of family is a big, big responsibility and requires tremendous maturity and endurance. I honour those family values. With kids, It’s like little life in your hand. And I am not prepared for it.~~~”

I just pray that everything is normal with you! I am asking you now, don’t play with my patience. Why don’t you put some words in your mouth and respond instead standing there mum like a figurine, from that time? 

With a colour of mischief in her eyes she playfully muses…

~~~Normal! What does that mean now! Oh, I so get it! Thank God you didn’t scout my personal diary which still got that post card of Cristiano Ronaldo intact… He is so…. I feel flushed now. Let’s talk something else~~~”

But then suddenly she collects her bearing. With those doleful eyes tearless yet drowned with melancholia… words floating all through her veins, she deeply reflects…..

“~~~There is so much to say. But will you understand what I mean to say!
Would you open your mind whole heartedly to embrace fresh new unbiased ideas?
Would you be my confidant and guide and let me be what I want to be?
I just want to live a fulfilled life. Will you take that from me just because I am a girl!
And have trust on me as I will never break your trust. If you would then I have so much to say…
As much as you think I am against marriage, to your surprise, I value marriage. Marriage is an institution in itself and it brings meaning to your life. With marriage starts a new chapter in your life,momentous and delicate and appeals for lifelong commitment and calls for two different shared life.
I don’t want to get married just to settle down. Neither I want to get married to follow a religious convention or to maintain a traditional belief.
I don’t want to get married to enhance my individual status or identity; just for the sake of being called Mrs…and definitely not for some economic or immigration benefit(I just hope Nina is happy there!).

At 19, I barely know myself. Whenever I want to jump the wagon or decide to get married, I want to do it for all the right reasons. I want to get married too but for love, for togetherness, for commitment, for a family of my own, for someone whom I can trust and devote no matter what, for time perpetual.

Haven’t you heard ‘Happily ever after’ is not a fairy tale….it’s a choice.
I will be glad, if you did rather asked me :

Why you don’t want to get married ‘Now‘?

How I wish I could have told you all this and more! But somewhere I am aware that it’s pointless and moreover I choose not to distress you so. ~~~”

This time you better respond as Why you don’t want to get married?

“~~~I thought….In my silence, you will find my confession and my utterance as I was sure you will understand that. But if you still insist…~~~”

And finally for the first time, she retorts aloud:

“Because, I don’t want to be another you.”

Only god can help you!

With a spring in her step and raring to go,  she picks up her Canvas Jute college bag and chuckles confidently,

God helps those who help themselves.”

 

 

Ref: The genesis of this short fiction comes from a real life incident. In certain stratum of society, the sad truth lingers; when a boy is born, there’s jubilation, songs of success and prayers for his bright future but with the birth of a girl, the first thing which crosses parent’s mind is her marriage. As if a girl is born to get married. An inexperienced, immature girl is emotionally coerced to get married in her early young age pressurised by these partial standards. It’s a vicious cycle and a blow to her self-worth. With this practice, a path towards individual aspiration and self-realisation is brazenly compromised just because she is a girl. How justifiable or reasonable is that?