The Law of Averages
It was another one of those lazy afternoons. The ones hen I have nothing to do in life but stalk people randomly on FB as they appear on my wall. Just for the record, in the words of the author “I’m not lazy, I just have a high inertia of rest.” This particular day was different. I was going through my inbox deleting messages of the “Do you want to do Fraaaandship with me?” variety when I saw a message by one Mr. Kshitish Padhy. Apparently Mr. Padhy had read a review of a book I had previously done on this blog and he was wondering if I would be interested in reviewing his book: Law of Averages.
I read and re-read the message about 3 times. Then I jumped up and did an impromptu jig in sheer happiness. Let alone the fact that someone who I didn’t have to arm twist into reading my blog -read friends and family- had actually read my blog, but now I was getting requests to review stuff. See since I myself am a PR professional and used to sweet talk bloggers to review stuff for my own clients, not all that long ago, the feeling of being on the other side of the scales was just.. so Boss! I haven’t really been blogging all that long, and the only other review I did was purely due to my love of reading. In my mind I kept chanting Oh how the petty have risen!
Since I’m a bookworm and have been known to blow huge chunks of my salary on books in the past, I try to steer clear of books now-a-days, considering I am unemployed. But I just can’t resist the smell of a new book and the sound of crisp pages turning, so like an addict craving her fix I often still blow money from my rainy-day stash on books.
So when Mr. Padhy offered to send across a copy of his book for my reading pleasure (ok for me to review) I was delirious with happiness. Getting to read a book without increasing the size of the already crater sized hole in my pocket- Christmas came early this year! (or considering the timing of the request.. just in time).Having said all that, this is supposed to be a review, so here goes nothing.
After waiting for ages (read 2 weeks) for my copy of Law of Averages to arrive, I was pleasantly surprised with the first look of the book. Since Kshitish is in the comic business, I wasn’t really surprised with the great cover art. What I did find intriguing was the name. Law of Averages, weird name for a love story wouldn’t you say?
To that I say read the Preface. Kshitish mentions, “The Law of Averages is bound to catch up with you and you are bound to win big time at least once in your life” and well in his mind this applies to love as well. So well when you think about it, in a round-about way, the name of the book is actually pretty ingenious. It doesn’t outright mention love, but when you finally make the connection; it certainly gives you this nice gooey feeling inside. Although I’d like to mention here that the preface is actually much better, than the actual sequence it has been lifted from, but that’s just my point of view.
The book is hilarious and filled with adventure, just as the back cover promises, however it is a little too filmy for my taste. At one point the protagonist takes a bullet for his prospective father-in-law whom he’s trying to impress (oh no that was the whole plot of the book right there) while battling terrorists on their quest for lost treasure. Like I said a little to Bollywood-y for my taste, but then I guess that’s to expect when a man writes a love story. It has more to do with a great adventure than the actual love story.
I believe when women write romance it deals entirely too much with the emotional turmoil. There is almost always a villain and it’s a lot of mind games. So in that respect Law of Averages is a really refreshing read. The story line is as interesting as the name. And well at the end of the day, no matter how filmy, I like the idea of a treasure hunt to win the love of your life.
Talking about the characters, I think this is one aspect Kshitish has got bang on. Ritwik, a lowly comic scriptwriter with a very high inertia of rest, is just the right mix of sweet and macho. Shubhangi, his lady love, is not a drama queen... well not a really big one anyway, and dictator, the prospective father-in-law is not over the top. When I read the nickname, I had this premonition of a totally over the top old man who is as eccentric as he is strict, but Kshitish managed to do a good job with all the characters.
As for the negatives, I thought the book started out a little stiff, it was entirely too formal and a little uncomfortable to read, with me, this has always been a bone of contention, when it comes to Indian authors. However by about the fifth chapter the problem sort of resolves itself and the book becomes easier to read. I guess beginnings are always hard. Also the book has too much technical jargon from the comic book industry for my taste, between issues, series and titles I was lost!
All in all however it’s a good read, considering that it’s the authors first book, I’d say it was great. By the end all I wanted to say was Ritwik.. Leave her.. leave Shubhangi immediately and marry me! You seriously don't find men like this anymore!