It’s been a while since I posted my last book review. Today seemed like a perfect day to post another!! So, today I am going to review “An Intellectual” by Shivam Chaudhary.
Book Title: An Intellectual (Part – 1)
Author: Shivam Chaudhary
Publisher: Blue Rose Publishers
Date of Publishing: 23rd August 2017
Total Number of Pages: 195
Review by Sohinee Dey
When I first had a chance to grab this book, I was quite fascinated by the whole “mental masturbation” concept. Hey, “mindful orgasm” doesn’t sound that bad either, no? Seems like an erotica to you? Think again.
“An Intellectual” tells the story of two intellectuals (as the author likes to address them), Swaraj and Najya. They stumble across each other in a metro station wherein Swaraj juts up his courage, approaches her and asks for the book which he saw her carrying in her hand. Now, the author offers a little bit of scene where he tells that they appeared for the same physics entrance test but at different centres. Swaraj was searching for a solution to a problem which he believed would be there in the book. Now, if I was that stranger, standing with another stranger, waiting to catch the metro, I would probably have kept to myself even if I saw that the stranger held the book where the solution to the problem could be. Well, doesn’t that make Swaraj a courageous boy?! Maybe? Oh, not to forget the letter which he writes to “The Universe”.
Now, as they start conversing, they get so lost in their discussion that they end up discussing about nothing and everything! Erm…whatever happened to catching the metro?! They are both passionate about the philosophy of life so they end up discussing every minute little thing that teams up with “life”, every atom, stars, protons, thoughts, mental psychology…oh and don’t forget the neutrons!
Najya has a very close friend and an imaginary friend with whom she discusses all her secrets and whatever crosses her mind. So, talking about Swaraj doesn’t seem to be a bad idea at all, not when they have indulged in “mental intercourse” and “conversational orgasms”!! Swaraj and Najya enjoy passionate (no, not what you are thinking) time together and in the end Swaraj receives a reply to his letter. The book ends with Najya getting proposed by her imaginary friend cum lover…and scene!
I think I have pretty much summed up the whole book for you except for leaving out the main story :p
So What is This Book All About?
Umm…I don’t have a direct answer to that question. From what I understood, the book mostly talks about the philosophy of life with a plot that is not the centre of attention. Yes, I felt that the thoughts which the author wanted to convey was in the spotlight rather than the plot. The plot is actually not that really fancy and is of a light and simple nature but the concept is that of an “intellectual”.
The concept is really unique, I must say. I don’t think anything as such has ever crossed a writer’s mind. So, I’ll give the author credit for that.
What Did I Like About The Book?
The first thing that I would say to answer the question is the concept behind the book.
The next thing would be the cover. It gives off a classic peaceful vibe which I really liked about it. The cover really enhances the title and the whole concept.
The title is kept simple and this is the best thing about a title!
The words that were put into the characters’ mouths. Yes, they were really different. The conversations they carried out was what mostly stood out to me in this book.
It was really thoughtful of the author to provide a list of idioms (which he used in the book) with their meanings at the end of the book. I found that I mostly knew them (score for me!).
The grammar and the language was actually really good. I rarely come across books by Indian authors where I could find no grammatical glitches. This was one of those rare books! Score for you Mr. Author!!
What Could Have Been Better?
The time has finally come when I become the big bad wolf! I have always been known to be a blunt book critic and it is not going to change anytime sooner!
The narration could have been way better. The book is written in the form of a play where the narrator describes the scene and the characters voice their assigned dialogues. But this one didn’t feel like a play in action to me. It felt more like dialogues were assigned to the characters but they were not actually voicing them. The words were written right on the page, but I couldn’t connect with it. It felt monotonous and robotic to me. No proper action was mentioned, like when you are speaking you would react in some way, right? Either you’ll itch your nose, maybe bite on your lip nervously or maybe you would move your hands while talking but there was no such action mentioned along with the dialogues which made the characters look lifeless and robotic. So, I feel that the author could have done a better job at that but was too preoccupied trying to convey his philosophy of life that he ended up neglecting the characters and the narration.
Just having an imagination doesn’t always work out. You’ll have to be equally convincing with how your characters react and how. Also, the narration is what creates the flow in a book. When you are writing a book and want to give a message to the readers through your characters, let them speak, not you! Because you are no longer in control of your words but instead you need to make your characters act out the words that you want to say! I think that’s the whole point of writing a book.
At times, I felt that some of the “assigned dialogues” were really unnecessary and they only ended up stretching and making the storyline lengthy. Sometimes, the dialogues felt more like a rant and less like a dialogue. So, maybe the author could work upon them and give a nice polishing!
Would I Recommend This Book?
Sure, why not. There’s no harm in reading a book. You can decide later on whether you liked it or whether…well, you know it better!
Would You Like Reading This Book?
Now I can’t really answer that as I am in no position to make the decision for you. So, the decision stands with you whether you’ll like it or not.
My Final Verdict –
What the figments of your imagination could do!
The language, vocabulary and the use of idioms were perfect. But the plotline wasn’t consistent and it ended on a rather superficial note.
Maybe if the plotline paced up a little bit and the characters seemed more humanly (and less robotic) and if they kept up with their dialogues, I would have been able to connect with them. Unfortunately, I felt detached from the entire storyline.
This book has a lot of potential but the execution could have been better. I know executing such an “high end” concept could not have been easier but a better job could have been done.
My final rating would be 3.2 star out of 5.
*Let me know what you thought about this review. Your feedbacks always helps me to improve. I will always be thankful to you, my readers.*
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