Author: Kishore Modak
Published June 4th 2014 by Grapevine Inda Publishers Pvt. Ltd
Reviewed for The Tales Pensive
Life is not always what it looks on the face value. Similarly the as the story reveals itself in the end, you realize it lands on different dimension that you earlier thought.The entire story is told from the eyes of a protagonist who is a drunk broke man. He has a darker side and it take time to adjust to his way of thinking. I hated the protagonist, the main hero (supposedly) but I loved the book.
The Premise: "It is every dad’s nightmare – his little girl goes missing."
The story starts when a father looses his daughter in the streets of Pattaya while he is busy dealing with the drug peddler in a corner. His addictions have taken over his saneness and everyone blames him for the loss. His married life was already on a rocky path and due to this incident, his wife leaves him. The police too is not very helpful for him. His work too suffers and eventually he looses his job and there is no hope left for him. There is a ray of hope when he meets a lady who narrates him the story of how she rescued her daughter from the beggar mafia in Thailand. Determined to find his daughter, he sets out on a journey which will shock him to the core. Will he find and rescue his daughter or loose himself to Pattaya?
My 2 cents: The book is an interesting casual read with good narrations and character built up. It is narrated from the eyes of Palash, the lead character, father of a young girl, broken, drug addict and most of the time in drunken state. The way he thinks is not expected to be too sane, and so it took time for me to understand his point of view. There were places where I hated him and felt justified for his loss as it was difficult for me to put myself in the shoes of the narrator. Questions kept propping in my mind such as 'How could a distressed father of a missing daughter call the drug peddler for his regular dose of coke, even before landing at the police station?', 'How could he be lost and narrate to us the beauty in the eyes of a prostitute when he is on a mission to search for his baby?'
These kept me going through the book, but I would say this is a positive point. Generally, in most of the novels I fall in love with the lead character, or at least feel empathy for him. This is the first book where is felt strong antipathy for the protagonist for a good first half. The characterization done by author is so damn strong that he wants to peek into the thoughts of a helpless man caught in addictions. I felt this was one strong point along with the use of awesome language and flow.
The second half gets better when the mystery unfolds and it leads to strange revelations. It becomes more of a personal quest for Palash than for his daughter. Though the title and cover page with a sad girl suggests that the story is about a lost girl, it is more about the father. There are narrations about the lanes of Pattaya, drug peddlers, prostitution and other dark alleys where you would never want to venture, but can be virtually explored through the book.
All in all, the book is a good read. Read it for powerful narrations, good vocabulary, some magical sentences and to visit the darker side of the world.
My rating : 3.5 out of 5 stars.
The book was received as part of the Reviewers Program on The Tales Pensive.