Sunday, August 5, 2012

Book Review - Flirting With Fate by Preeti Singh


Genre: Crime/ Fiction

Publisher: Mahaveer

‘FLIRTING WITH FATE’ is the first novel by Mrs. Preeti Singh, and finally, I have got an opportunity to read something different from usual college love stories. Set in 1980s, during the time of Contessa cars and Doordarshan, it is the story of Anand, who was abandoned by his parents and left at an orphanage – Palash, when he was just a baby. As he slowly grew into a beautiful boy, the lack of love and respect from the society developed negativity within him, which resulted in anger and a yearning for love, and which ultimately resulted into crimes.  What started from small and subtle crimes, like stealing, quickly turned into bigger ones like rape and well planned murders. The hunger for love, respect, status and power made him disrespectful, and deadly dangerous. But is money and status everything? Can you escape your wrong doings? Do you pay for your bad Karma? The answers to all these questions are answered in this book, and you better read it to find those answers.   

Now, the REVIEW... 

As a first time writer, Mrs. Preeti Singh has done an outstanding job. I just loved the way she has described everything, minutely – be it the crimson colour of the sky, or the gruesome rape scene, or the intelligently planned murders, or the pain and anger suppressed within the characters. The character of Anand is so meticulously sketched that it almost looks real. The reader feels connected to it. All the supporting characters like Mr. Gonzalves, Sunita, Miss. Joseph, Aslam Bhai, Gauri, Patty etc. are perfectly sketched as well. And how can I forget the highlight of this book – Fluffy, the dog. The expressions and thoughts of Fluffy are expressed as dialogues, and this is not only unique, but also well written. Among the many well-written scenes, I particularly liked the one in which Sunita is raped by Anand. The expressions and feelings of both the characters are so well written, that the reader is filled with anger for Anand, and sympathy for Sunita. Like this scene, there are many such scenes which look very lively.

The book is not at all predictable, and this is a major plus point. It is a complete page-turner. The book sends across a very strong message of Karma Returns, and Mrs. Preeti Singh has conveyed it successfully. Congratulations.   

And, the negatives...

The book has a few editing flaws, which I hope the author and the publisher will take care in the next edition. But the major negative, which I personally feel, is the too much usage of Hindi, especially in the later part of the book. I don’t know what extra effect it creates, but it looks a bit fake and forced writing to me. If a particular character, like a rickshaw puller, has a dialogue in English (which is the default language of a book), and then he speaks another line in Hindi, it looks unreal, because, it is highly uncommon that a rickshaw puller, can speak in Hindi and English both. Considering 1980s, only the elite class would have used English + Hindi lines in their conversation.    

On the whole, Mrs. Preeti Singh’s ‘Flirting with Fate’ is an engrossing read that sends across a strong message, successfully. The author has arrived with a bang, and if the book is marketed and distributed well, it will be a sure shot best-seller. I am going with well-deserved 4 out of 5 stars and a thumbs up for Mrs. Preeti Singh's 'Flirting With Fate'.