A Long Way Home (A Memoir) – Saroo Brierly
The book came highly recommended and I hardly had anytime to finish it before I could watch the Movie adaptation that too before the Academy awards it quite a few well deserving awards. And after reading the book back to back in flat 48 hours followed by the movie this morning – I have no doubts that it will definitely get those and are well deserved. The book is simply superb as hardly 115 pages but covers so much and in such great details with the simplistic writing one could read ever, genuinely from the heart. Story of a five year old kid separated from his family one fateful day, who travels unknowingly about 1600 Kms from his home, lands in Australia with sheer good luck – how he traces his life / family and journey back to home is the book all about. Right from the very first page it is indeed so gluing and engrossing that I just couldn’t keep it down, started on Thursday and fortunately had to work from home on Friday (didn’t work at all although) but finished the book and watched the movie first thing in the morning. As I said the book is written like a memoir and the best part comes as a surprise in the ending in the form of real pictures – the ending 30 odd pages are simply too good to be true as it takes the reader back on a visual journey of what we had read and lived with Saroo’s memory. Its an amazing amazing book which deserves to be read by all and I hope and guess that the movie and accolades will now make it pretty famous too.
Movie Adaptation: I had no expectations from Dev Patel as never liked him in any movie (apart of-course from Slumdog Millionaire) and find him overrated. I recently saw “The Man Who Knew Infinity” and the less said the better about him and the movie. But with “Lion” I will say he has certainly come of age now and is genuinely fantastic and in character, too good. Right from the very start the kid who plays the little Saroo impresses so much and you just cant but feel for him and fall in love with him so much that it is an unbelievable feeling – mostly I had a big huge lump in my throat throughout. By the time he grows up to become Dev Patel – my tears were almost ready to drop down seeing his pain and expressions to find his lost life back. The way his family, mother, brother(s) and sister must have cared and tried finding him. The way he tries to find them all back, his new amazing parents (equally good work by Nicole Kidman – not Oscar worthy though) is too good. As the book is too short – movie feels even shorter or may be as an audience I was looking so much forward to it that wanted it to keep going. Movie does full justice to the book but as is always the case – it does loses quite a lot (details) from the book but still a great adaptation I will say. covers most of it. For people who do not plan to read the book – I will say go ahead and enjoy the movie, do not miss it at any cost as it is one of those few movies which comes very close to a perfect 5/5 and I will rate it no less then 4.5/5. A must watch for all movie lovers.