Saturday, November 23, 2013


The Author of "Amidst the tides lies a beautiful island" and a Sulekha blogger Ms Mangala Nagarajan reviews Dimple Saxena's "Life beyond conventions" exclusively for Litereads. 

The book  lured me with its title---‘Life beyond Conventions’. The cover too had its own way of highlighting the title with the light smiling through, breaking its conventions, the dark clouds. It is generally the title that holds me to the book and this book did too.

The author Ms.Dimple Saxena, a software project lead in one of the reputed IT companies in India has done a very good job in her debut novel. She can add this endeavour to her other accomplishments with pride.

Truth is always beautiful, so is her novel as it shares with us the real life experience of a girl- Naina, who hails from a small town Yamuna Nagar. It is a joint family where her father is the sole breadwinner who finds it difficult to make both ends meet. He strives hard to make his kids study. The middle class life is portrayed beautifully by Ms Saxena. I could smell the town’s air and walk along with her enjoying the small tiffs with her brother Priyanshu, tasting the yummy food of her mother who thinks twice before buying something for herself and sympathising with her father who works day and night sacrificing his happiness for the sake of his family.
Naina wants to achieve and she makes every effort   to reach her goal not deterred by the hurdles on the path. Her thirst to achieve is seen when she argues with her father about staying outside Yamuna Nagar in a hostel. Her love for her brother and her maturity is seen when she reasons about her brother’s engineering   seat. I too rejoiced when she succeeded along with her parents who were responsible for her victory.

‘Fences are made for those who cannot fly’----It is very true for Naina. Nothing stopped her from doing what she wanted, nothing could stop her from dreaming and achieving her dreams   and nothing could stop her from marrying the man she loved. She broke the barriers laid for the girls in Indian towns and villages and took off from Yamuna Nagar to Delhi, Gurgaon....USA. I was so happy for her. For whom travelling in an AC compartment of a train was a dream was able to travel by air. Hats off to her hard work and mental strength.

Her lucid style of writing impressed me. I loved the way she has expressed herself in simple words, not using bombastic words which would have destroyed the effect of the novel. This style actually I feel will attract many to her book. The bondage between the members of the family was beautifully brought out in simple words. One thing I felt lacking in her novel was –She could have given some more description about the way her family had to suffer to give their children education and something more about her struggle to enhance and create an impression in the heart of the readers. 

When I closed the book, I felt proud of Naina. I wanted her to keep going up the ladder, setting an example to the girls who give up citing the traditions as an excuse. Parents of Naina stand high in my esteem. It is not easy to leave behind the life we had been used to and the society we belong to and support the kids. The father who wanted his daughter to shine, and the mother, who gave all her confidence and courage (It made me think that she lived her dream through her daughter), whenever her daughter crumbled, commanded respect. Priyanshu’s character showed gradual change in ideas with his experience and maturity. It was clearly evident when he felt sad that his dad did not want to add the surname of his sister’s would be, in their marriage invitation, being  afraid of  the society’s wrath.         

Naina has made true Bach’s quotation—‘You are never given a wish without also being given the power to make it come true. You may have to work for it, however.

This book will inspire the ambitious youth. I wish Ms. Dimple Saxena more and more success and happiness in all her endeavours. I was all smiles when I read about her heroine’s present and when she wrote Naina’s mom was busy shopping. As she now did not have to stay tight with money. I am sure that Naina will be a source of inspiration to her cousins and the generations to come and to the girls of that small town Yamuna Nagar.  Really a worthy read.

The book is published by Kalpaz Publications and distributed by Gyan Books Pvt Ltd. It costs Rs 180. The ISBN is 9789351280200.                                                                                                                         


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