Monday, October 7, 2013

Never Mind Yaar- Book Review

About the Book
Title: Never Mind Yaar
Author: K. Mathur
Publisher: Southpac Publishers Ltd.
ISBN: 978-0-473-17480-4
No. of pages: 220
Price: INR 350
Genre: Fiction
About the Author
Born and brought up in Mumbai, K.Mathur lives with her family in New Zealand. Mathur showcases her unique perspective into her city’s psyche in Never Mind Yaar. She holds a blogspace at 'Never Mind Yaar'. Her articles on the environment have been published by the "Green Dream Foundation, India".
“I’ve always enjoyed my city except when violence has erupted between communities. On the whole people seem to get along fine. We are proud of our own community but accept that others are proud of theirs. The food we eat, the clothes we wear and the languages and dialects we converse in are diverse and most of us say vive la difference. But there’s a handful in every community who are extremely suspicious of those differences.”
“Why is secularism or a different way of doing things such a threat to these people? This issue has disturbed me since the 1980s when I witnessed communal riots in Mumbai. I felt compelled to talk about it in Never Mind Yaar. But first and foremost, the book is a love story and a story of friendship and fun between three young girls from different backgrounds – Hindu, Parsi and Christian – who meet at college.”
The Cover Speaks
The cover is a bit of bizarre. With watermark of banyan tree, the small cartoon of three friends and a fancy gate of Gyan Shakti college don't make a good combination. Had it been a plain color with small subtitles , it would have been better.
The title is an attitude - our tendency to feel defeated by the scale and nature of certain problems. Rather than meet them head on, we circumvent them with a sigh and a consoling “never mind, yaar”.

When long time friends Binaifer Desai and Louella D’Costa meet Shalini Dayal at Gyan Shakti College, a true friendship that transcends cultural and religious backgrounds is born. Louella is a Christian, Binaifer, a Parsi and Shalini, a Hindu.

The novel’s main plotline surrounds Shalini who has fallen for an impetuous student activist, Bhagu. Where does his desire to help the less fortunate lead him? The challenges are many - Shalini’s tradition bound family, the couple’s youth and inexperience and the travails of life in Mumbai, a city the girls love but know, is fraught with communal tension.
The book has been endorsed by several readers and it's evident from its dust jacket.
"To me the book is a mixture of history, cultural information and a lovely story rolled into one. Unique and compelling."- Sarah, UK
"I read, I related, I loved." - Benifer, Mumbai
"Never Mind Yaar is driven by a strong narrative, a rich cast of characters and a strong sense of place which is intriguing for noth Indian and non-Indian readers."- Graeme Lay, reviewer, NZ
"A page turner." - John McCarthy, Author, NZ.
The author, KayEm has also made a lovely video on the story. You can watch it HERE.
Book Review
College, canteen and friends - three most intriguing words when come together takes you back to your good old days and you find yourself in the best of your time. The book depicts the friendship of three friends- Shalini, Binaifer and Louella and a love scene between Shalini and Bhagu. The mingling of different cultures between the three friends Louella, a Christian, Binaifer, a Parsee and Shalini from a very orthodox Hindu family has been well penned. The author has given a political tinge to the story through Bhagu. The expected indulgence in college fun lacks in the story. It's a slow paced one-time read.
In a Nutshell
Though I found the book a bit verbose but it provides a good read taking you back to your college days and take a dip in your old memories and some lost-forgotten friends.
My Rating
Hioy'oy Hoi Polloi

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  1. Thanks,Surbhi.
    Book seems worth the space it will take o the shelf.
    Will read it.

    1. Yes, you will feel yourself in your golden time once again. :)

  2. well, i personally loved the is such a big draw for me....good review

    1. Opinions differ from person to person. Thanks for dropping by. :)


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