A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce is the most boring book I have read in the last three years. I struggled to read. So, heard it on the audio book, but still it was painful. I have no idea why James Joyce wrote this book. Why would anyone be bothered with such a dry story? I couldn’t take it while reading. Therefore not going to relive it by writing a proper review about it.

Just happy that I got this tattered copy of the book free of cost and I didn’t spend a single rupee to read it.

Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi

Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi

Imprint: Grove Press, New York                                                              Review by Shwetha H S
ISBN: 9780802127358

The debut novel of Akwaeke Emezi i.e. Freshwater deserves all the praise that it has garnered. It is not your PR pumped book. Even if it is, it is not necessary for the readers to like it unless it is well written. I, a reader, like it. In fact, I love it. It had been a long time since I had last read a book that had good narration. Just like the protagonist of the story, you won’t know what is happening, what to feel, what is the right thing to do.

Freshwater revolves around a character called Ada, whose name means precious or an egg of a python. Why python? Because, in Igbo langauge, python is Ala, the mother of Ogbanje, an evil spirit. That is all the background I can give you in this book review. If I talk more, I will give out the whole story. No, I won’t do that. Because I want you to read this book. As you start reading the story, I didn’t understand what is happening, in and around Ada. After an unpleasant incident, Ada starts to behave differently, as if she is not herself. Now, the narrator keeps telling that they are Ogbanje. But I had my doubts. Whether Ada has multiple personality disorder or is possessed by the spirits. The first personality is a pair actually. Next, along with her orgasm comes another personality, a dominant one, called Asughara. This is an extremely sexualised personality that comes into picture whenever Ada is having sex with anyone. But it rapidly and completely takes over Ada, controlling her every action, better than the previous personality pair. Right when I decided that Ada had turned into a sex addict, Saint Vincent came into the picture. Until then, Ada won’t even know this personality is there inside her. Saint Vincent is the not-so-prominent low profile Ogbanje that when gets unleashed, makes Ada a bisexually oriented person, sexually feasting on boys and girls alike. In between this, another pair of Ogbanje just come and go, making Asughara, the first pair and Saint Vincent ensure that Ada goes mad, at least to the outer world. Until the end, I wasn’t sure whether I was reading about multiple personality disorder or actually Ogbanje. But how do they do this? Why do they do this? What happens to Ada? What is her story? What is the Ogbanje? Freshwater is a mesmerizing story that leaves you numb at the same time rushing a pack of emotions through you, still making you feel nothing. Until you reach the end, at least the last few pages, you won’t know what exactly is happening. Don’t worry. I haven’t given up on the story in this review. There is a lot more to Freshwater than just Ogbanje. To make things interesting Yshwa (Jesus) and the Odinani spirits have a few conversations on how to keep Ada alive or kill.

Freshwater is a must must read! You will definitely miss a lot if you are a bibliophile and don’t read Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi. The books is set in many countries, not only Nigeria, native to Odinani. So, even if you can’t relate to terminologies, you can relate to the countries. I, for one, could relate to a lot of things. Author talks about sari, roti, etc., that are found in India too. By the way, the word freshwater is used only once in the whole book, except the title. That is in the end. You get that?

Nerala Hejje by Tejaswi A C

Nerala Hejje by Tejaswi A C (ನೆರಳ ಹೆಜ್ಜೆ – ಕವಿ ತೇಜಸ್ವಿ ಏ ಸೀ)

ವಿಮರ್ಶೆ – ಶ್ವೇತಾ ಎಚ್ ಎಸ್

ನೆರಳ ಹೆಜ್ಜೆ ತೇಜಸ್ವಿ ಎ ಸಿ ಅವರ ಕನ್ನಡ ಕವನ ಸಂಕಲನ. ಇದು ಕವಿಯ ಜೀವನದ ವಿವಿಧ ಹಂತಗಳಲ್ಲಿ ಬರೆದ ಕವಿತೆಗಳನ್ನು ಹೊಂದಿದೆ. ವಿಷಯ ಅವರ ಮತ್ತು ಅವರ ಮಗನ ಬಾಲ್ಯ, ಅವರ ಶಾಲಾ ದಿನಗಳು ಮತ್ತು ಕಾಲೇಜು ದಿನಗಳು, ಕೆಲಸದ ಜೀವನ, ವಿವಾಹಿತ ಜೀವನ ಇತ್ಯಾದಿಗಳಿಂದ ಕೂಡಿದೆ. ಹೆಚ್ಚಿನ ಕವನಗಳು ಒಂದೇ ರೀತಿಯಾಗಿರುತ್ತವೆ ಮತ್ತು ಕೆಲವೊಮ್ಮೆ ನಿಮ್ಮನ್ನು ಬೇಸರಪಡಿಸುತ್ತವೆ, ಆದರೆ ನಾನು ಇಷ್ಟಪಟ್ಟ ಒಂದು ಕವಿತೆಯೆಂದರೆ ಅದರಲ್ಲಿ ಕವಿ ಏನು ಯೋಚಿಸುತ್ತಿದ್ದಾರೆ ಎಂದು ಅವರ ಪತ್ನಿ ಕೇಳುವುದು. ನೀವು ಓದಲು ಉತ್ತಮವಾದದ್ದನ್ನು ಹೊಂದಿಲ್ಲದಿದ್ದರೆ ನೀವು ಈ ಕವನ ಸಂಕಲನವನ್ನು ಓದಬಹುದು.

Review by Shwetha H S

Nerala Hejje is a Kannada poetry anthology by Tejaswi A C. The title means shadow of the footsteps. It has the poems written at different phases of the poet’s life. The theme varies from childhood of his own and his son’s, his schooldays and college days, work life, married life, etc. While most of the poems are similar and sometimes tires you, the one poem I liked is in which the poet is asked by his wife what he is thinking. You can read this poetry anthology if you don’t have anything else better to read.

Daatu by S L Bhyrappa

Daatu by S L Bhyrappa (ದಾಟು – ಲೇಖಕರು ಎಸ್. ಎಲ್. ಭೈರಪ್ಪ್)

English translation of the review is given after the review in Kannada

ವಿಮರ್ಶೆ – ಶ್ವೇತಾ ಎಚ್ ಎಸ್

ದಾಟು ಕನ್ನಡದ ಪ್ರಖ್ಯಾತ ಕಾದಂಬರಿಗಾರರಾದ ಎಸ್. ಎಲ್. ಭೈರಪ್ಪರವರು ಬರೆದಿರುವ ಕನ್ನಡ ಕಾದಂಬರಿ. ಅವರು ಕಾದಂಬರಿಗಳ ಜೊತೆ ಸಣ್ಣ ಕಥೆಗಳನ್ನು ಕೂಡ ಬರೆದಿದ್ದು ಅವರ ಕಥೆಗಳೆಲ್ಲವು ನಮ್ಮ ಸಮಾಜದಿಂದಾಗಿರುವ ಹಾಗೂ ಅದರಲ್ಲಿರುವ ಸಮಸ್ಯೆಗಳ ಬಗ್ಗೆ ಆಗಿವೆ. ದಾಟು ಎಂದರೆ ಕನ್ನಡದಲ್ಲಿ ದಾಟಲು ಅಥವಾ ಜಿಗಿಯಲು. ಈ ಶೀರ್ಷಿಕೆಯ ಮೂಲಕ ಜಾತಿ ವ್ಯವಸ್ಥೆಯ ಗಡಿಯನ್ನು ದಾಟಬೇಕಾದ ಅಗತ್ಯವನ್ನು ಲೇಖಕರು ಸೂಚಿಸುತ್ತಿದ್ದಾರೆ. ನಮ್ಮ ಸಮಾಜವು ರಚಿಸಿದ ಮತ್ತು ಎದುರಿಸುತ್ತಿರುವ ಜಾತಿ ಸಮಸ್ಯೆ ಕಾದಂಬರಿಯ ವಿಷಯವಾಗಿದೆ. ಇದು ಜಾತಿ ಆಧಾರಿತ ರಾಜಕೀಯದ ಬಗ್ಗೆಯೂ ಮಾತನಾಡುತ್ತದೆ.

ಸ್ವಾತಂತ್ರ್ಯದ ನಂತರದ ತಿರುಮಲಾಪುರ ಎಂಬ ಹಳ್ಳಿಯಲ್ಲಿ ಈ ಕಥೆಯನ್ನು ಹೊಂದಿಸಲಾಗಿದೆ ಮತ್ತು ಆ ಸಮಯದಲ್ಲಿ ದೇವತೆಗಳಿಗಾಗಿ ಪ್ರಾಣಿ ಬಲಿ ನಿಷೇಧಿಸಲಾಯಿತು ಮತ್ತು ಜಾತಿ ಆಧಾರಿತ ಜನಗಣತಿಯನ್ನು ಪ್ರಾರಂಭಿಸಲಾಯಿತು. ಕಥೆಯ ತಿರುಳಿನಲ್ಲಿ ಸತ್ಯಭಾಮ ಮತ್ತು ಶ್ರೀನಿವಾಸ ಇದ್ದಾರೆ. ಸತ್ಯಭಾಮ ಬ್ರಾಹ್ಮಣ ಪುರೋಹಿತರ ಮಗಳು. ಶ್ರೀನಿವಾಸ ಶಾಸಕರೊಬ್ಬರ ಪುತ್ರ, ಗ್ರಾಮದ ಊಳಿಗಮಾನ್ಯ ಪ್ರಭುವಿನ ಮೊಮ್ಮಗ ಮತ್ತು ಗೌಡ ಜಾತಿಗೆ ಸೇರಿದವನು. ಇಬ್ಬರೂ ತಮ್ಮ ಕುಟುಂಬಗಳ ಮುಂದೆ ಪರಸ್ಪರ ಮದುವೆಯಾಗಬೇಕೆಂಬ ಬಯಕೆಯನ್ನು ವ್ಯಕ್ತಪಡಿಸಿದಾಗ, ಯಾರೂ ಅದನ್ನು ಒಪ್ಪುವುದಿಲ್ಲ. ದುರ್ಬಲ ಇಚ್ಚಾಶಕ್ತಿಳ್ಳ ಶ್ರೀನಿವಾಸ ಇನ್ನೊಬ್ಬ ಹುಡುಗಿಯನ್ನು ಮದುವೆಯಾಗುತ್ತಾನೆ ಆದರೆ ಸತ್ಯಭಾಮ ತನ್ನಷ್ಟಕ್ಕೆ ತಾನೇ ಸತ್ಯಳಾಗಿರುತ್ಥಾಳೆ. ಅಷ್ಟರಲ್ಲಿ ಪುರೋಹಿತರು ಹುಚ್ಚರಾಗಿ ಆತ್ಮಹತ್ಯೆ ಮಾಡಿಕೊಳ್ಳುತ್ತಾರೆ. ಅದಕ್ಕೂ ಮೊದಲು, ಅವರು ತನ್ನ ಮಗಳಿಗೆ ಬಹಳ ಹಿಂದೆಯೇ ಅಸ್ಪೃಶ್ಯ ಮಹಿಳೆಯೊಂದಿಗಿನ ಸಂಬಂಧದಿಂದ ಜಾರಾಜ ಹೊಂದಿದ್ದಾರೆಂದು ಹೇಳಿರುತ್ತಾರೆ. ನಂತರ, ಶ್ರೀನಿವಾಸನ ಪತ್ನಿ ಸಾಯುತ್ತಾಳೆ ಮತ್ತು ಅವನು ಸತ್ಯಭಾಮಳ ಆಲೋಚನೆಗಳಿಗೆ ಹಿಂದಿರುಗಿ ಕುಡುಕನಾಗುತ್ತಾನೆ. ಆದರೆ ಸತ್ಯಭಾಮ ನಂತರ ಶ್ರೀನಿವಾಸನ ಮೇಲಿನ ಎಲ್ಲಾ ಆಸಕ್ತಿಯನ್ನು ಕಳೆದುಕೊಂಡು ತನ್ನ ಎಲ್ಲಾ ಸಮಯವನ್ನು ಕೃಷಿ ಮತ್ತು ಕೆಳಜಾತಿಯವರ ಉನ್ನತಿಗಾಗಿ ಪುಸ್ತಕ ಬರೆಯಲು ಹೂಡುತ್ತಾಳೆ. ಅವರ ಜೀವನದಲ್ಲಿ ಬಹಳಷ್ಟು ಘಟನೆಗಳು ನಡೆಯುತ್ತವೆ, ಆದರೆ ಅವರು ಎಂದಿಗೂ ಒಂದಾಗುವುದಿಲ್ಲ. ಏಕೆ? ಏನಾಯಿತು? ತಿಳಿಯಲು ಪುಸ್ತಕ ಓದಿ.

ಎಸ್ ಎಲ್ ಭೈರಪ್ಪರವರ ನಿರೂಪಣೆಯು ಎಷ್ಟು ವಿವರಣಾತ್ಮಕವಾಗಿದೆಯೆಂದರೆ ಅವು ಕಲ್ಪನೆಯನ್ನು ಸಾಕಷ್ಟು ಪೂರೈಸುತ್ತವೆ. ಎಷ್ಟರಮಟ್ಟಿಗೆ ಅದು ಭಾವನೆಗಳನ್ನು ಮುಟ್ಟುತ್ತದೆ ಎಂದರೆ, ನಿಮ್ಮನ್ನು ಪಾತ್ರಗಳೊಂದಿಗೆ ಅಳುವಂತೆ ಮಾಡುತ್ತದೆ, ಅವರೊಂದಿಗೆ ಪ್ರಚೋದಿಸುತ್ತದೆ, ಹಿಂದೆ ನಿಂತು ಅವರ ಮೂರ್ಖತನವನ್ನು ನೋಡುವ ಹಾಗೆ ಮಾಡುತ್ತದೆ. ಕಥೆಯ ವಿಷಯವು ಇಂದಿಗೂ ಸಹ ಸಾಪೇಕ್ಷವಾಗಿರುವುದರಿಂದ ನಾವು ಅಂತಹ ಸಮಾಜದಲ್ಲಿ ವಾಸಿಸುತ್ತಿದ್ದೇವೆ ಎಂದು ಜೀರ್ಣಿಸಿಕೊಳ್ಳಲು ಕಷ್ಟವಾಗುತ್ತದೆ. ಪ್ರತಿಯೊಂದು ಪಾತ್ರಗಳನ್ನು ನಿಮ್ಮ ಜೀವನದಲ್ಲಿ ನೀವು ಯಾರಿಗಾದರೂ ಹೋಲಿಸಬಹುದು. ಕಥೆಯಲ್ಲಿನ ಆಡುಭಾಷೆಗಳು ಮತ್ತು ನಿಂದನೀಯ ಪದಗಳನ್ನು ಇಂದಿಗೂ ಬಳಸಲಾಗುತ್ತದೆ. ಈ ಪುಸ್ತಕವನ್ನು ಓದಬೇಡಿ ಎಂದು ಹೇಳಲು ನನ್ನ ಬಳಿ ಏನೂ ಇಲ್ಲ. ವಾಸ್ತವವಾಗಿ, ಇದು ಓದಲೇಬೇಕಾದ ಪುಸ್ತಕ.

Review by Shwetha H S

Daatu is a Kannada novel by an eminent Kannada novelist S L Bhyrappa. He has penned many novels along with short stories, and all of them address the problems in as well as with our society. Daatu means to cross over or leap in Kannada. Through this title, the author is indicating the necessity for us to cross over the boundaries of caste system. The theme of the novel is the caste problem created and faced by our society. It talks about the caste-based politics too.

The story is set in a village called Thirumalapura, post-independence, and at the time animal sacrifices for the deities was banned and caste-based census was begun. At the core of the story are Satyabhama and Srinivasa. Satyabhama is a daughter of a Brahmin priest. Srinivasa is a son of an MLA, grandson of the village’s feudal lord and belongs to Gowda caste. When they both express their desire to get married to each other in front of their respective families, neither approve of it. Weak-willed Srinivasa goes on to marry another girl but Satyabhama stays true to herself. Meanwhile, the priest goes mad and commits suicide. Before that, he tells his daughter that he has a bastard from an affair with an untouchable woman long ago. Later, Srinivasa’s wife dies and he becomes a drunkard going back to the thoughts of Satyabhama. But Satyabhama loses all her interest in Srinivasa after his marriage and invests all her time in farming and writing a book for the upliftment of the lower castes. A lot of events take place in their lives, but they never get united. Why? What happened? Read the book to know.

S L Bhyrappa’s narration is so descriptive that they amply cater to the imagination. So much so that it touches the emotions, making you cry with the characters, provoke along with them, stand back and look at the stupidity of them, and so on. The theme of the story is so relatable even today that it is difficult to digest that we are living in such a society. You can relate each of the characters to someone or the other in your lives. The slangs and abusive words in the story are used even today. I have nothing with me to tell you not to read this book. In fact, this is a must-read.

Women Around Us by Hanadi Falki

Women Around Us by Hanadi Falki

ISBN: 9789353213985                                                                      Review by Shwetha H S

            Hanadi Falki is a writer of Indian origin. ‘Women Around Us’ is the first book of the series ‘Life Around Us.’ Through this series, the author is trying to show our societal life that we are not able to relate to because of having our heads constantly in social media. Through ‘Women Around Us’ Falki tells us stories of women who can be anybody we know.

Her Dream talks to you about child marriage and education of girls. No More Please is about body shamming, peer pressure and parental pressure among students. While Not Fair Enough is about our obsession with the fair complexion, Hello Again is about the harassment, both mental and physical, and stalkers. Never Too Late tells you about the husband and wife relationships straining because of the in-laws. It’s Not Love shows the true colours of domestic violence towards women. Stand By Me is the story of motherhood.

Of all the stories, I liked It’s Not Love. I loved the way it started. I thought at least one-story talks about the bad women. It’s not like all women are good and angelic. Yes, of course, other stories have female villains, but those are the secondary characters. So, I had high hopes from this story, but again, in this story too someone else was the villain. Not disappointed, but if author says that she is writing about women around us, I expected all kinds of women; stupid, villainous, intelligent, nerdy, etc. However, some of the female protagonists of a few stories are not your typical ones. So, happy to read them.

Women Around Us is a one-time read. If you are stuck in traffic and want to read to kill time, then go for this book.

Orson’s Farm – Sows The Seed and Cuts The Corn by Jim Davis

Orson’s Farm – Sows The Seed and Cuts The Corn by Jim Davis

Imprint: Ravette Books Limited                                                       Review: Shwetha H S
ISBN: 1853041122 and 1853041769

US Acres, known as Orson’s Farm outside the USA, is another creation by Jim Davis, the creator of Garfield and friends. Though it has the word farm in its title and similar characters, it has nothing to do with George Orwell’s Animal Farm.

The title character, Orson, is a pig. Booker is a chick and Sheldon an egg that doesn’t want to hatch completely and walks on two legs. Because Orson incubated these two while they were still eggs until they each completely and partially hatched each as he read his books, Booker and Sheldon call Orson their mom though he is a male. This farm also has a rooster by name Roy, two sheep siblings Bo and Lanolin, a crazy and cowardly duck called Wade, Cody a puppy, Blue a kitten, and a colony of random worms that keep taunting Booker often.

I remember reading Orson’s Farm books as a child. I used to laugh a lot. Sometimes, I even used to act like the characters in these books. Now that I am reading them as an adult, I find them less funny, but they are still as precious as ever. I feel like picking up my colour pencils and colour the cartoons. These are the books, the steppingstone, to my bibliophilic adult life. No matter what be the title, all the comics under US Acres/Orson’s Farm are random depictions of each characters’ lives in the farm and their interactions with each other.

Orson’s Farm is a good start for hooking children to books and to avoid video games. Adults too will not be disappointed.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Review by Shwetha H S

Genre: Classic, Literary Fiction, Drama, Coming Of Age, Young Adult

Louisa May Alcott is an American writer. She has written poems and short stories that appeared regularly in journals around 1850s. Though she is famous for writing Little Women, she has also authored other books like Flower Fables and Hospital Sketches.

Little Women is the story of four young March girls under the care of their mother Mrs. March for years as their father is away at the war. Margaret March a.k.a. Meg, the eldest at 16, Josephine March a.k.a Jo, second at 15, Elizabeth March a.k.a. Beth, third at 13, and Amy March the last at 12. The family is poor and is only able to look after themselves as much as they can. While Meg and Amy wish they had more money, Jo and Beth are happy with what they have. Mrs. March knows how each of her daughters are, and is close to each of them. The daughters too are close to each other. Due to their good nature, their neighbour Mr. Laurance and his grandson, Laurie, become close to the family. They interact with their grandaunt often at whose place Jo works. Laurie’s tutor, John Brooke, likes the girly Meg. Laurie falls for tomboy Jo. Beth falls sick, which is pretty serious in those ages when medical science had not developed much. Amy becomes an artist. What happens in each girl’s life is what you get to know by reading Little Women.

I first heard of the book on the famous sitcom Friends where Rachel and Joey discuss books. I later got to know it is a classic. When I started reading it, in the beginning I got bored. Maybe it was because I could not relate much to the times of 1840s and 1850s. The initial pages tell you about Marches’ lifestyle. As and when the story moves forward, I started to enjoy it. So much about the sisters bickering with each other and love back all the same. What got me glued to the book and did not let me put it down was the relationship between Jo and Laurie. Louisa May Alcott has described it in detail, with every expression and emotion, that I simply read on. I found myself rooting for them. Amy comes out as a surprise towards the end. Watch out for her!

I can say, the only two classics that I have thoroughly enjoyed are Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen, and Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. Little Women is for everyone, irrespective of age, gender and geographical location.

Pop the Bubble Written and Illustrated by Mary Eakin

Pop the Bubble Written and Illustrated by Mary Eakin

Review by Shwetha H S

Genre: Chidren’s book
Imprint: Sweet Lemon

Mary Eakin is a graduate from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. For many years she worked as a graphic designer for companies across the U.S. including Hallmark’s Gift Book division where she designed over a hundred books. She co-wrote the children’s book The Amazing Journey to Grandma’s House with Cheryl Hawkinson. Mary was the designer on several Hallmark Interactive Storybooks, which earned a Dr. Toy award. Recently, Mary moved to Bethesda, Maryland where she continues to design, write and illustrate. The most recent book she illustrated entitled Truly, Madly, Carefully by Molly Wigand is now available at Hallmark stores and online.

Pop the Bubble is a children’s book in which a girl is seen making a bubble and playing with it. The illustrations in the book are good, but nothing much apart from that. If you see it as a parent, there are a thing or two for your child to learn from this book, like numbers from 1 to 3, hand movements, and directions. If you see it is a child, then there is no purpose necessary. When the writer saying blow the bubble or brush away the leaves, the child might just keep doing it on the pages without any changes, in vain.

I would not suggest this book but if you have already bought it, then it is not a total waste.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Review by Shwetha H S

Genre: Children’s Book, Fantasy

Charles Lutwidge Dodgson used the penname Lewis Carroll to write. He was an English writer, mathematician and photographer. After writing Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, he next wrote Through the Looking Glass with Alice as protagonist again.

A young girl called Alice follows a talking rabbit down a hole that leads to a magical land that Alice calls Wonderland. Here she meets weird characters. Mostly they are talking animals and crazy looking and behaving humans. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland comprises of all the events Alice endeavors there.

Lewis Carroll must have been high when he wrote this book. The narration is good for storytelling for kids or picturization; not for reading to self. Alice is always either growing tall or short, talking nonsense. Was there a necessity to write this book? Reading this book is a great agony. ‘As soon as she had made out the proper way of nursing it (which was to twist it up into a sort of knot, and then keep tight hold of its right ear and left foot, so as to prevent its undoing itself), she carried it out into the open air.’ This is how handling a baby of unknown species described in the story. What kind of sick mind would do this? It is only when the Mad Hatter appears, that the story starts to make some sense. By the end of the story, you will sure of one thing: one of the 3 people – Lewis Carroll, Alice and her sister – were high. Or all were high indeed. When you finish the book, if you are my kind of a reader who doesn’t quit a book just because it is boring, you will let out a sigh of relief.

Don’t bother reading Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

Domechild by Shiv Ramdas

Domechild by Shiv Ramdas

Review by Shwetha H S

Genre: Dystopian Fiction, Cyberpunk Sci-Fi
ISBN: 9780143332985
Imprint: Inked – Penguin Books, India

Shiv Ramdas is a former media professional who is now completely into writing.

Albert is too emotional for someone who is a resident of the Dome. In his dystopian world, one day when he is going back home after finishing talking to random people on the network, that is what everybody does for work, he takes a route that is forbidden for people of the city. There he finds a child, Theo, gets fatally attacked by her and her friends, saves her from patrolling robots, and rescues her by taking her to his home. Next day, he gets blackmailed by a data management computer. It wants to die, and it wants Albert to file a petition to the governing body to pull its plug. It tells him if he doesn’t do as told, it will inform everyone about him sheltering a fugitive. What does Albert do? He can’t send the girl away as she has no one. If he doesn’t listen to the computer, he dies along with the girl. Read Domechild to know what Albert finally does.

Theo’s anxiety of not living up to people’s expectations is what I could relate to as a reader. Her grandfather, Robert, is the guy whose genius is misused. Albert is the frustrated guy who is fed up of waiting for a Messiah.

Domechild feels more like a dystopian satire than a cyberpunk sci-fi. Narration is not grippy in the beginning for such a genre. Conversations between the characters don’t have emotions in them though present in the words. As a reader, the murder of Castor in the story did not have any effect on me. The story gets intense only after 3/4th of the book is over. That is when you realize the dystopia of the book is not in the far future, but is the current time that we live in. Information is the dope that gives high here. Just like the useful and useless trivia that we find on our Facebook newsfeed. The concept here is about businesses run on pay-per-view income. Here technology has taken over everything. This is a clever dystopia by Shiv Ramdas. The dome here signifies the bubble. Burst the bubble to face the truth kind of situation. The concept of Information Epidemic is simply a marvelous concept. If not for anything else, the book is worth reading for the sake of this Information Epidemic. But in the end, it feels like the author has brought in assumptions of Albert in a hurried manner to bring book one to an end and establish that Albert is clever.

Domechild is not your regular dystopian fiction. You can relate to a lot of things even in the present day. Read it. That’s it.