Story of Tublu

jahid akhtar

Book Blurb:

Devastated by the floods, Bipin and his little boy Tublu move to a faraway land, where they meet the Sharma’s. This marks the beginning of a long and enduring relationship between Bipin and the Sharma’s, and the growing friendship of their children Tublu and Maina. The book captures the journey of this friendship through childhood to adolescence and into adulthood. From some interesting school and college humor, the story progresses on and develops into a mature narrative. As years pass, Tublu’s plain and silent crush on Maina develops into deep love and longing for Maina which bears the potential to conquer all of life’s challenges. The story has its share of drama, that entertains; humor, that makes one reminisce; love, friendship and emotions that defines the amazing journey that is, life.

I liked the story, the innocence of the characters, and the easy plot. It gave me an old world kind of feeling. Though there is not much twist and turn in the storyline, it still keeps the readers’ attention. It is not that eventful, and the plot is predictable, still you’d want to read on and on to know what happens to the characters. I liked Maina, Tublu, their families and all the supporting characters. The language used is simple, aimed at readers of all age groups. But the third person narrative and the lack of good dialogues seems mundane and drab at a few places. Anyways, considering it’s the author’s debut novel, he has done a really commendable job.

There are many cute moments in this coming-of-age novel. We see the lead characters grow through childhood, and teenage years, achieving academic excellence and accomplishing so many things while living and evolving constantly. I liked that scene where Tublu brought home a big framed colored photograph of his parents’ marriage using modern technology on the black and white photo. Bipin, his father was so touched and was in awe of the modern technology. I liked the tea stall and gossip stations scenes where Tublu met Rustam whenever he returned to him hometown. And the characters grow, start their own lives; it is emotional full of poignant partings and meetings. Though the end is not unpredictable, the readers would get attached with the characters to accompany them in their journey till the end.

The book was received as part of Reviewers Programme on The Tales Pensieve.


Queeristan by Parmesh Sahani

  Queeristan (Amazon Link) Thanks to Audible Free Trial I listened to this amazing non-fiction on LGBTQ inclusion in Indian workplaces. Author Parmesh Sahani identifies as gay Indian, working closely with Godrej higher management and employees for years to create an inclusive workplace, both legally and in spirit. This book is a result of those years of experience, research, collaboration with individuals from difference spectrum of the society and organizations who has successfully transitioned into a queer friendly one.   Indian history is inclusive. From the Khajuraho temple architectures, to Konark to the Rig Veda, there is existing proofs even 2000 years ago of Indian inclusiveness of queer. It’s the draconian British law that criminalised it, which was scraped in 2009, came into effect once again following a sad judgement in 2013 and eventually was scraped off for good in 2018. I am in awe of the lawyers who fought this legal battle- colleagues and partners – Arundhati Katju

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