Title: Truly, Madly, Deeply
Author: Faraaz Kazi
Year Published: 2011
Genre: Romance, YA
My Rating: 2 on 5
It’s hard to read and judge a book when you are not part of the target audience. No matter how hard you try to be in someone else”s shoes and try to judge unbiasedly, you will eventually end up giving out a wrong judgement. That’s what I call my review of Faraaz Kazi’s debut book. This is meant for young adults, who are still looking at the world with rosy glasses. I am not one of them and that could explain why I did not like this book as much as I had hoped.
Truly, Madly, Deeply is about a school going boy, Rahul, who falls helplessly in love with Seema. The novel starts with Rahul shown as a heart broken young man who is indifferent to everything happening around him. The first few chapters etch Rahul’s character as an aloof, reserved and a no-nonsense guy. The novel sets the right mood and you find yourself wondering what on earth is wrong with Rahul. The following chapters take us down the memory lane where we see Rahul meeting Seema and how their relationship turns into love. We see obstacles and hurdles, and how the novel ends is something that you have to read for yourself.
The novel gets a great start with the prologue. The setting, the description, the character – it sets the perfect mood. The first few pages were a surprise for me. There are some descriptions which I really like. The flowery language, the intelligent use of similes and metaphors – the book was an easy read. I really liked the fact that Kazi has tried to give poetry a re-birth by including quite a few popular poems and sonnets in the book. Never mind that they are all about love.
Somewhere down the line, the book loses its grip over the reader. Instead of sympathizing with Rahul, I found him irritating. I wanted to give him a good shake and ask him to get a grip on his life. The usual ingredients of a love story – a fight, a misunderstanding and the other usual ingredients of a teen love story – cricket to display the hero’s heroism, quiz to show that he is also intelligent and references to SRK’s popular scene of ‘palat’ in DDLJ (groan) – after some time, it becomes an over dose. I blame this on my age and hope teens enjoy this better. And is it really necessary to use all capital letters to show an outburst of anger? There are quite a few mistakes which really put me off – spelling mistakes, words with missing spaces in between, using ‘his’ and ‘her’ interchangeably. This book needs another round of proof reading.
All said and done, the book was okay while it lasted, but I wouldn’t call the journey memorable. Love story is easy to write, but difficult to get it right. The fate of a love story depends on how strong the relationship is between the protagonists and this is where this book fails. Apart from the flirty scenes and candle light dinners, we never see the relationship evolve. So when they eventually do break-up, you hardly feel anything for them. If this relationship had touched the reader’s heart, you would hope that they get back together, no matter what the odds are.
Some pages in the book show that Kazi can write and pretty well too. Let’s hope he continues to write more books and spread his love of poetry to others.