Happy Friday Guys! Today I am going to post my review in a different style- Bullet point style, hence the title. This review style is inspired by Marie from Drizzle & Hurricane books. When I saw her review, I instantly made up my mind to some reviews in that style. I think I am going to carry this review style for books that I didn’t like that much and don’t have elaborated paragraphs to write about, or if I am really busy and want to post quickly 😀 I find this way really quick too. So I hope you will enjoy this review style!
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Publication Date: November 20th 2016
Publisher: Write India
Part of Series? No
Source: Review Copy
Goodreads Blurb: This is a story that falls through the crevices of pitiless anonymity, yet miraculously waits to be told.
Shijukutty, a Malayali fisherman, leaves his tiny hamlet of abject poverty in the coastal village of Vizhinjam on the outskirts of Thiruvananthapuram, the capital city of Kerala, that picturesque vignette of searing beauty on the southwestern coast of India.
Shiju, like millions of other Malayalis, seeks his destiny in Dubai, that gleaming global hub of fortune on the southeast coast of the Persian Gulf. What unfolds is a stirring story of distilled hardship, exploitation, identity, and friendship, and the heartbreaking choices Shiju is often forced to make. So what he sees is not what he experiences when he lands in a world of glimmering towers, fast-paced life, and unabashed opulence. For what he was not prepared for was the dark underbelly of Dubai beyond the shimmering mirage.
Shiju’s life is no more the same. But he holds his ground, drawing on ancient instincts of his seafaring ancestry. As things settle down around him, he is inexorably pulled into the canyon of recession… Will Shiju be able to hold on to his dreams? Will he able to pull out himself from the whirlpool? Will he survive against all odds? Will he redeem himself?
What I Liked
- Good depiction of Malayali culture: This point will also appear in the “What I didn’t like” section but first let’s talk about the positive side. The author has very aptly depicted the culture of Malayalis. For those of you who don’t know what’s a Malayali is- Malayalam is a language spoken in the Indian state Kerala and the people of that state are called Malayali. The exact details of the Malayalis and the people living near the shores, mainly fishermen, was accurate and will tell you many details about the culture of Kerala.
- An Apt description of Dubai: Dubai is the second place in which the story mainly takes place and the author has used his words beautifully to describe Dubai and its fast and rich life.
- Heart-breaking description of immigrant workers: The main theme of this book is depicting the truth behind the glorious life of Dubai and basically making aware of the conditions of immigrants workers in that country. All that description was really heart-breaking. You will feel bad for those people after reading the poor conditions in which they were forced to live just because they wanted to earn and send back home some money.
- The good writing style of the author: I have to confess here that I was going to leave this book in between, at one point but it was the writing style of the author that kept me going.
- Perfect satire: Author was humorous at times and the satire was perfect when he was saying “how it is a dream of every Malayali to go to Gulf to earn more money.”
- Simple language and narration: The author has used a very simple language and narration is quite good too. So if you would be interested in such stories, you can complete it quickly.
- Author has raised some intense issues like human exploitation, recession, suicide etc. That’s is really a good aspect of the story.
Being buffeted by wind or tossed by the waves after a while becomes routine, so much so that anything other than that can be alarming.
What I didn’t like
- Over explanation of Malayali culture: I should explain here that why it is both a good as well as the bad point. It feels good to read about a new culture and its people. But how would you feel if the starting 3-4 chapters are just about that, repeating same things again and again? And it didn’t stop after a few chapters, but it returns after a gap! Now I bet that’s really boring. For me certainly it was!
- The blurb reveals too much: Yes, in fact the whole story has been revealed there. After finishing the book you will feel as if there was nothing extra in the story apart from the characters description.
- Weak storyline: This story was character driven. It’s not that I hate the character-driven storyline but there should be at least something in the plot to keep your interest.
- Boring cover and title: Yes we can judge a book on these aspects too, especially a person like me who proclaims to be a “cover hoarder” 😀
We were the deracinated underlings, the disembodied voices, the buried-in-oblivion low life.
This is a simple story about immigrants and their situation working in the Gulf. The emotions have been portrayed beautifully and the writing is simple. I would recommend it only if you like a character-driven story. Also if you like books with multicultural aspects and don’t care much about the story then you will enjoy it.
The 365 Days by Nikhil Ramteke is not a story but the immigrant experience in the gulf. Aching emotions delivered via words!
**I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
Have you read this book? What do you think? Do you plan to read this?
What’s your preference – character driven stories or plot driven?
Do you like stories with multicultural interest?
Do you like this new review format?