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Saturday, 11 April 2015

Date Published: December 22, 2014

Publisher: Leadstart Publishing Pvt. Ltd.

Pages: 85

Format: Paperback

Goodreads Synopsis

The protagonist is about to turn forty, belongs to a rich and affluent family, lives a luxurious life but feels discontented because he believes that the world is ruled by fake moral values and suffocating bondages. He leaves everything and migrates to Kolkata to live a creative and meaningful life. He goes through many funny experiences in Kolkata in his quest to know what the real meaning of life is. He meets Debolina, an upscale prostitute, who loves to listen to his poems while making love. She tells him about many truths of life and finally he has the panacea for his confusions and doubts.

My Review

What would you call a rich man in his forty who leaves his family, job and career only to live a creative and meaningful life in Kolkata? Impractical? A dreamer? But, Sanjay Chitranshi in his book, ‘Poetic Penetrations’, asks, is it sin to dream?

Well, Sanjay Chitranshi’s protagonist not only does leave everything behind – his job, family and life – but also shifts to Kolkata and lives among unknown people to pursue a creative and meaningful life. As soon as I finished reading the book, I could come up with only one sentence which sums up the essence of this entire book – this is one such book which will cut across your heart and make you bleed.

And here’s why:

Story of Poetic Penetrations is probably the most unique one I have ever read. As soon as I read the blurb of the book, I knew I had to get my hands on it for two reasons: the book is set in Kolkata and, second, it is about the meaning of life. And, Sanjay Chitranshi didn’t disappoint me. His story deals with many incidences from Kolkata and paints a perfect picture of the city. His story has humor, emotions, thoughts on different issues and everything else which makes it a perfect story. When it comes to the meaning of life, at least according to me, happiness comes into the picture. In his book Sanjay perfectly deals with loneliness, happiness and in the end, the meaning of life.

Perhaps the most fascinating thing about the book is the language. Sanjay Chitranshi, an alumnus of IIT Roorkee, has done magic with his simple language in just 80 pages what rest of the authors couldn’t in more than 300 plus page books. His poetic language penetrates the walls of the prejudiced and imperfect world questioning the very foundation of our existence – happiness, morality and meaning of life – and leaves its readers flabbergasted. Apart from few type mistakes, which hardly hindered my reading, Sanjay’s language is to be noted by new and emerging authors.  

Probably the most unique feature of this book is spontaneous thoughts of author running spontaneously, yet smoothly and steadily, throughout the book. His narration in the first person, moves throughout the book flawlessly like a river flows through mountains; patiently and unhindered. The book’s narration kind of reminded me of James Joyce’s work.

His subtle yet effective way of directly dealing with social issues – from prostitution, publishing industry, education system to the meaning of life – makes the book, a must read! And for that reason, Sanjay’s book, ‘Poetic Penetrations’, reminded me of one of the quotes on books by Franz Kafka.

“I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound or stab us. If the book we're reading doesn't wake us up with a blow to the head, what are we reading for? So that it will make us happy, as you write? Good Lord, we would be happy precisely if we had no books, and the kind of books that make us happy are the kind we could write ourselves if we had to. But we need books that affect us like a disaster, that grieve us deeply, like the death of someone we loved more than ourselves, like being banished into forests far from everyone, like a suicide. A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us. That is my belief.”

This is one such book for me!

Will Sanjay Chintranshi’s protagonist find happiness among the unknown people? Will he find someone to share his loneliness with? Will he ever find true meaning of his life? 

Well, I suggest you to read Poetic Penetrations by Sanjay Chitranshi and find out…

I rate this book a 4 out of 5 for beautiful language, dealing with social issues directly and spontaneity of thoughts. This book is recommended to all those who love reading books based in Kolkata. Language and social issues deal with in the book makes it a read for ‘young rebellious generation’. This is a book not to be missed at any cost!

As an author, book reviewer, poet and reader, I sincerely request Sanjay sir for a sequel! I look forward to reading the sequel of ‘Poetic Penetrations’.

Note: I sincerely apologize to Sanjay Chitranshi for the delay in reviewing this wonderful book. But, I believe that a book such as this one deserves a book review which does justice to it. For that exact reason, the delay was caused in the reviewing this book.