Sunday, August 14, 2016

Book Review : The Story Of A Suicide (by Sriram Ayer)

I love it when a book leaves me with a hangover ! If you haven't experienced that kind of a feeling ever, I have to say that you have not been reading the right kind of books. For books have the power to take one on an emotional roller coaster and change the way we perceive life in general. Good books are capable of providing an high that can last for days or even months.

'The Story Of a Suicide' could have been just another book based on the lives of a bunch of college students. But for the powerful narration that holds one spellbound till the very last. It deals with real and perceived issues faced by youngsters in a society that has undergone a tectonic shift on the moral front. Sriram Ayer has touched upon a plethora of topics like child sexual abuse, homosexuality, sexual liberation, voyeurism and egotism by painting his four characters in various shades of grey. This is a story that begins with an attempted suicide and ends with a real one which brings to fore the fact that youngsters view suicide as a quick escape to their myriad problems. Problems that have been aggravated by their self centered behavior and addiction to social media.

One of my favorite chapters in this book is the battle of wits between Caesar and Draupadi. Camouflaged beautifully as a stage act, it portrays the character of Charu and the battles raging within her. When Draupadi mouths the words "Why is being chaste, the cornerstone of a woman's character? And why does that rule never apply to a man?", it may as well be Charu speaking her mind. And this assumption gets vindicated when she puts up an explosive post on Facebook berating men and their sexually laced motives behind every achievement.

After reading the book, I could only conclude that if this generation gives up it's 'Me, mine and myself' approach, things would be much simpler. A cool headed and rational approach like Alex or atleast the presence of a person like him is what they need. After all, everyone can do with a person who does not judge them. Doesn't matter if it is a friend, family member or even a stranger.

Ironically, for a book that is based on sexuality, this one does not resort to sex to sell a few more copies. Not that it needs to .

This book is available online and can be read HERE.

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