Book Title-She : Ekla Chalo Re
Author- Dr Shayan Haq and Santosh Avvannavar
Available Online on Amazon
About the Book:
I started reading this book with a bit of apprehension.Mainly because of the sensitive subject involved in it.Nevertheless,I decided to take up this review,mainly because I wanted to do my bit to shed light on the plight of transgenders.It is not a voluminous book.I ended up finishing the book pretty soon.
The authors need appreciation for taking up a not-so-popular subject and coming up with a story around it.We need more books in this genre,so that one of the most marginalized sections of our society finds a voice.
About the Author:
The book is co-authored by Dr.Shayan Haq and Santosh Avvanavar.
Dr.Shayan Haq is a medical professional.Originally from Bihar,he is currently working in Bijapur,Karnataka.
Santosh Avvanavar is a NITK,Suratkal alumnus with many research publications to his credit.He works as an advisor for different organizations. At the same time,he dabbles in fiction writing.Some of his other works are Adhuri Prem Kahaniya;Be A B.B.A;Black,Grey and White;Get a Job without an Interview.
The story revolves around the life of a transgender,Kusum.The story is set as though Kusum narrates her life to a stranger she meets on the highway.She gives an account of her life right from her childhood to the present.Hers is a life of struggle,heartbreaks,humiliation and sheer grit.Her story is one of hope of survival against all odds.
The story focuses more on Kusum’s realization of herself and her acceptance by the society.The author aptly quotes Rabindranath Tagore’s ‘Ekla Chalo Re’ lyrics to portray the lonely fight of transgenders in our society.
Most of the plot revolves around the socio-gender complexities involved in her relationship with Debu, the love of her life.I personally feel more importance could have been given to the struggles the transgenders have to endure.Especially more emphasis could have been given to the problems they have to encounter to secure an admission or a job.Finding love is a second priority when day-to-day survival itself is a question mark.
Even in the scenes where Kusum describes her rejection and dilemma,I feel the narrative could have been more emotional.Less of emotions and feelings gives the book a documentary film feeling.
On the whole,a good book focusing on the plight of transgenders in our society.Makes you feel if a person like Kusum can find happiness inspite of all odds,why not a normal person like you and me.If need be,be prepared to travel alone in life’s journey.This is the motivational message the book conveys.
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