As You Sow, So You Shall Reap

Review of Of Tattoos and Taboos – A Flight Down The Forbidden Aisles; Anurag Anand; Sristhi Publishers 2012; Rs 100; pp 214

– Shana Susan Ninan

A flight down several forbidden aisles – that’s almost exactly what it is! Anurag‘s fourth book, told through the life of Sejal Patel, narrates a story that could well have been mine or yours. As mentioned in the Author’s Note in the beginning of the book, each one of us dons a dual mask, if not more, displaying a certain character at a specified time and place, and another at a different time and place. Taking inspiration from an earlier acquaintance of the author’s, he spins a story of ambitions, love, betrayal, revenge and dreams.

Sejal Patel dreams of working and living in the big city of Mumbai, just like any other girl from a small town background. Only, her life starts to spiral down the drain once she starts metamorphosing into a social butterfly in the limelight. She mistakes her freedom for the irresponsibility of living a carefree and a much careless life. She discovers, through sad and negative episodes, that the men who woo her are after her body, and not much her brains or her companionship. She, too, indulges promiscuously in several men, only to find that a no-strings-attached relationship is quite impossible for her to maintain.

Sejal’s transformation into Sherlyn Ahuja seems like the natural choice of change in behaviour and lifestyle, but I’m sure there are other ways to beat the big city, not exactly by succumbing to its lust and dirt. The story is quite predictable in a lot of places, similar to ones you’ve read and heard before, but what holds the thread through is Anurag’s lucid language and the easy flow of the plot.

I’ve read Anurag’s The Legend of Amrapali: another book with a woman as its protagonist. Both women are strong characters, a strength they aren’t born with, but gained over the years through life’s bitter experiences. And that’s something that helps them live through the years of their life, with their heads held high.

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Rating: 9.8/10 (6 votes cast)
As You Sow, So You Shall Reap, 9.8 out of 10 based on 6 ratings

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This entry was posted on Friday, November 9th, 2012 at 8:28 pm and is filed under Fiction, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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