Book Review : An Affair to Remember - By Harkeerat Anand
Cynicism and disrespect to the reader rule, throughout the book. The author has taken great pains right from her dedication and prologue to tell the reader how insignificant and unimportant he/she is to her and how 'she doesn't care' . Thank you, Harkeerat Anand, for saying those kind words to me after I took the effort to buy your book and worse, spent my time reading it because I bought it anyway. This is something probably no author has ever done to her readers. The prologue goes on to drone about how bad things have happened to her many times and by the time I finished it, there was a very bitter taste in my mouth and I regretted buying the book of an author who herself claims that I am beyond help because I had chosen to buy her book!
Coming to the story, it is about a young man who is stuck in the corporate ruckus of long hours of pressurizing work, peanuts for salary and bosses taking all the credit.How he gets back at the system is what the book is all about. But amidst the mangled mess of scenes that keep shifting back and forth between the confused happenings of the real world and the protagonist's even more confused mind, the main plot is hardly visible. Am I an unintelligent reader? Maybe, and the author has anyway repeatedly told me that throughout the book. Numerous detailed descriptions of various chemical reactions that can cause explosions (which, by the way, you and I being commoners unlike the author, would never know about - yes, she says that) do not add to the already failing 'charm' if any. Add to all this, continuous negative opinions about the city of Bombay, the protagonist's frustration over his pointless existence, repeated references to urinals and male private parts and viola!! You get 155 pages of negative energy for only Rs 67 if you buy from Flipkart. Oh yes, that can be quoted as a positive - the book size and the price. Though I now wish I had spent that money on a bar of chocolate or ice cream. I would have at least enjoyed them.
I feel sad to write such a negative review on someone's effort to write a book and have it published too. I may have forgiven all the cynicism and negativity the author has passed on through the book if she had not repeatedly belittled and disrespected her readers. Where is the need for this in a book? Is that what I get for taking the effort to encourage her debut novel? However, both Good Reads and Flipkart are filled with positive reviews hailing the book. I seem to among the minority who did not like it. If you have read this one, do tell me what you think about it.