Have You Met A Stranger Lately? A Book Review of When Strangers Meet.
Book Title: When Strangers Meet
Author: K. Hari Kumar
Publication: Shrishti Publishers and Distributors
Price: Rs 100,
One fateful day.
A small room.
And a story of a lifetime…”
We need no spirit to tell us what we actually aspire for in life, what is of value to us ultimately in life but sadly, these are exactly the things we bungle up in life. Especially when we are young with fresh aggressive blood running in our veins!
While reading this book, there were many places that I could either identify with the characters or remember having seen them somewhere or even interacted with them! What makes this little book of 206 pages an utter delight is its extremely simple narration and the theme of re-discovering oneself. Most importantly, one gets to understand through the characters what is really important to oneself before the sands of time create a horrifying storm, destroying all desire, ambition and relationships.
The book is thoroughly entertaining even while retaining the elements that are needed to make a story worth reading and also carry home certain points that we hide deep within our souls.
The lives of three persons Jai, Iyer and Pathan are interwoven in this unique tale of want, desire, need and redemption. The author is currently working in the film industry and has used his experience in acting, writing and directing to come up with a novel which appears deceptively simple!
Jai from Gurgaon is at an age when he wants to decide what he wishes to do with his life. And that is certainly not doing what his father wants – and that is engineering! He wants to do animation instead. Mathematics is a subject he dislikes terribly more so because his father teaches Maths and is insistent that he too becomes adept at the subject.
Iyer aka ‘Thalaiva’ from Tuticorin wants to be an actor but his father wants him to pursue …yes, you got it right –Mathematics. Finally, the day of reckoning descends and:
“Now, we stood there, face to face.
Man to man.
Father to son.
Son to father.”
Arshad, the son of Hussain (Pathan), a tea seller wants to “ …dance to the tune of the rain like other kids his age, like his brothers.” But, he had the responsibility of assisting his father in his work. He had little desires like the children who had everything in life but as of now only what is father said mattered.
All are trying to play their cards choosing paths that lead them away from the usual stereotype secure situations they have been living until now.
Where would it lead them?
Will they be able to fulfil their dreams on their own?
Will desires and aspirations based on the conflicts, trials and frustration of dear ones ever fructify?
The author has done full justice to the story plot. And the nice thing about the book is that anyone, practically anybody irrespective of the kinds of books that they read will enjoy reading this book. A fit manuscript for a movie in fact!
And the best message lies right here:
“Ignore things that provoke you, instead of reacting to them. Laugh your way through everything, everyday. It is funny but at the end of the day, we are all dirt in the sand. What is the point in wiping off the dirt, when you know you will be covered again soon?”
A great way to wind off! Don’t miss the book.
K.Hari Kumar is the 24-year old author of WHEN STRANGERS MEET.. He’s also an international award nominated Photographer and independent filmmaker who has worked in over twenty television commercials, directed 6 short films and two documentaries (one for an international artist).
The Stranger’s second short film ‘The Man who loved me’ was a commercial suspense thriller on homosexuality. The film was selected at the IFF 2011, Melbourne. His debut novel ‘When Strangers meet..’ is an adaptation of his first short film ‘My name is Iyer’.
When he’s not writing or travelling, he works with his father in a small farm in the South Indian countryside where he lives with his parents and three cats.