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Wednesday, 24 August 2016

The Reengineers - Book Review

Indu Muralidharan’s novel is named the Reengineers. It has a young man, who with his well kept sideburns appears to be an engineering student. The initial impression which the book gives is that this is yet another love story set in the engineering campus. But thankfully it isn’t.

The Reengineers is the story of Chinmay who is contemplating suicide. His parents are undergoing a divorce and it is taking a toll in his life as well. I could absolutely relate to Chinmany’s emotions. The author has done a good job in articulating his feelings, his insecurities.

One day Chinmay and his friends go to his uncle’s library. From the window of the library they enter into another world which is the Seeker’s school. I feel this transition should have been smooth. As a reader I was having difficult time comprehending what is happening. How a realistic novel suddenly turned into a fantasy or was it a dream? I could not find answers to these questions even when I reached fag end of the novel.

The Seeker’s school exposes the big spiritual market. It tells us how spirituality has become a lucrative business. I liked this part of the story. How people come in search of something and get entangled into another materialistic pursuit, is narrated quite well. Then there is Siddharth who too has gone through the same fate as Chinmay. He has written a book with Chinmay as protagonist. Chinmay finds some advice through this book.

Too many cooks spoil the broth is an old English adage. The author mixes too many things albeit unsuccessfully. Siddharth’s angle should have been explored more. Chinmay’s sudden transformation is hard to digest. Naked couple behind the bushes near the lake, bizarre looking people try to create a fantasy around the Seeker’s school. Unfortunately the fantasy ends there itself. Had the author written the book in more linear fashion, the book would have been effective.

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