I got this book from the Author couple of months back and unfortunately because of my busy schedule (of-course of book reading) couldn’t adjust it in between. But this year, I have decided to finish off the Author sent books first before heading back to my heavy duty books planned for this year. Now this one was on the top of the pile that I have on my book-rack, smallest in size and with a very attractive and glossy cover so I decided to read it last night. It was such an easy to read, a breeze of a story and shockingly a chapter out of my own life that I just couldn’t believe, how unreal it all felt. I could not only identify with the protagonist of the story (Hari) but felt as if the character was based on my own-self. A bunch of kool colony friends on their own kind of adventure right before the Holi festival, going all out to prove a point that they have grown enough to take care of the festivity in their area. Terrific school life, classmates, a brooding elder sister who is good for nothing (especially for him, I have an elder brother), Dad almost as good as Hitler (not that my dad is any bad. Wink Wink! he is on Facebook), a loving and caring mother who always knew what he was thinking (just like my own) and a little too much of adrenaline for his age to make him a part of crazy adventures that we all did back then (especially in mid 80s).
The book kind of took me back in our own times when we did what we did then which now I feel is too embarrassing to tell anyone rather I will be ashamed to say what all we had done, I still can’t think of a reason why we were the way we were. Like breaking of the tables, chairs or anything which we could find in the neighborhood which as per us was of no use to the owners and using them to burn in the pyre without asking anyone (a lot of that stuff was actually stolen or jacked). Exactly how Hari and his friends did in the story, as I said earlier it was a chapter out of my own life and too close to the absolute reality. Especially the brother sister bonding (or lake of it) was unbelievably true too, I still remember it was the daily ritual of a fight that we always followed every night, the big question always was “Who will turn off the light before we hit the bed” and it had to be always me as I was the youngest :). Taking a poor man for a ride, never get caught, feel sorry later and try undoing it or regret for life. Wow! I just couldn’t believe it. The things that Hari the protagonist goes through in the little story and how he learns a lesson for life is simply mind-blowing. Another terrific thing that I loved about this book was its simplicity and a believable story written in the most subtle way. Take a bow Rajesh M Iyer, you’ve made me a fan for life and I am looking forward to your other work(s) one of which you have already sent me. And my expectations this time are sky high after reading this.
Have you read “Hari and Friends”? Do let me know how you like it and if you haven’t, you better do it soon or do it before Holi :).