In life, we often get imprisoned in a “self-created” jail. It is said that the mind creates the barrier and if we can overcome it, we can do wonders in life. All true. But, is that so easy? Don’t circumstance and situation play an important part there?
You might be wondering, why these philosophical questions! Well, they may sound philosophical or even hypothetical, but, they are an integral attribute of realities.
|Book Title||:||Invisible Shackles
|Publisher||:||Leadstart Publishing Pvt Ltd (11 December 2019)|
|# of Pages||:||
2143 KB 160 (Kindle EBook)
|# of Chapters||:|
Recently, from our team, I got a chance to read Invisible Shackles, a thought-provoking book by Anuja Aroa, that irked these thoughts/questions in my mind. “Invisible Shackles” is published by Leadstart Publishing. We are thankful to the publishers for providing us the review copy. The reviews are uninfluenced by all means, as always.
Let us take a look at the cover page of “Invisible Shackles”.
We strongly believe in not judging a book by its cover. At the same time, we also acknowledge the impact a cover page can make (both positive and negative) for the book (or for that matter, any media). So, we always talk a little about the book cover when we talk about a book.
The title of the book “Invisible Shackles” is challenging enough for the designer to come up with something interesting. The designer (team/individual at Boomranng Studio) has decided to go with a graffiti representing modern art as the core of the design. Using these attributes the designer has represented the face of a lady looking sideways with dropped eyes. The cover page represents the internal dilemma of the female protagonist quite well. And the colors make it look attractive too.
The book explores the fictional story of Naina Oberoi and Amrithum aka Amrit.
Amritham is a forest officer who lives practically in the jungle (in his official residence at Charikosia Wildlife Division). His wife Durgavathy aka Durga and daughters Divya and Shweta lives in the city with Durga’s family. Amrit’s parents passed away a while ago.
Naina was living a high profile life in a metro city with her husband Vikram Oberoi aka Vicky and son Siddharth. Siddharth, when reached a certain age, was moved to a boarding school and the couple was enjoying life altogether in each other’s company.
Situations took interesting turs for Naina and she came to Odisha running away from her home. She knocked the doors of Amrit and coincidently their paths crossed.
Why Naina ran away? How Amrit and Naina are attached to their respective families? Will these two fellows coming from different circles of society get along as friends? Will they learn something from the experiences of each-other’s lives? Are there any similar attributes in their different-looking lives?
Well, all these questions can get answered by reading this interesting book. And yes, on the way you meet so many characters including (but not limited to) Probir, Dhumusi, Babusa, Virendra Trehan, Sabrina Trehan, Partho, Shangram, Venugopal, Vignesh, Revathy, and others.
Let me start with a disclaimer that I will try my best to keep spoilers away, but, some of them are inevitable. So, please read with the consent.
The book has some positive aspects that make it a nice read. The way the social canvas is explored, the relations in a typical family are elaborated is superb. The authenticity in the exploration of the relationship and fragile bond between a couple with different life values, is simply commendable.
What comes to us as a surprise is the second half of the book. Of course, it continues the same story but becomes a thriller from a simple novel. The climax doesn’t disappoint. The last scene of the book shows the psyche and nature of almost all the characters.
Strong characters – is a positive attribute of this book. While you love some of them and hate the others, they all have reasons to do that, their mindsets. What we can deduce as right or wrong easily as a third person, is not easy for the person him/herself to see it that way.
Here is a simple yet interesting way a scene is explored in the book:
As he entered the house, the rooms within sprang to life, illuminated by yellow pools of light from the old-fashioned bulbs and easily visible to Naina through large windows.
See how effectively the author has shown the interior of the room, changing mood of the surrounding and announced the owner of the house! I like it.
You will find detailed explorations of relations in the book. Be it the relationship between a husband and a wife, parents and children, and more. I will suggest you to read conversations and descriptions about Amrit’s visit to Coimbatore – 20 days a year. The feelings and the turmoil explored is realistic. Here is a block of text where you can find a heartbreaking conversation.
She sounded confused as she replied, “I am well. What is it? You do know today is Wednesday, right?
“Yes. I know it’s not Friday, 9:30 pm, my allotted time to call you,” he replied with sudden sarcasm. “Can’t I call my wife when I want to?”
The differences between a couple would affect their bond with their children too, especially when one of the parents spend to much time with the kids. A simple and humble person may want to do everything selflessly for his/her family, but, sometimes the response he/she gets is not what is expected.
From past experience, he knew his daughters already had the best clothes, accessories and gadgets money could buy and were well-exposed to all the luxuries available in the city of Coimbatore…
The book also emphasizes the fact that after a certain point, one has to make decisions for his/her life and family on his/her own. Too much influence and interference in a daughter’s home will break it. Of course, it all depends upon a person’s wisdom and one cannot be taught the lessons of the life beyond a limit.
Amrit’s hesitation when his parents wanted to marry him with a girl from a wealthy and influential family, his reasoning and his parents’ vision is explored in a realistic manner.
When a couple (or one of them) is totally money-minded they tend to harm themselves and the family as a result.
Money was the third person in heir marriage. It was money which gave them high and plunged them back into abysmal depths.
It is no wonder that when someone cares only for material happiness, he/she even scheme against his/her spouse.
A little loving can do wonders, you know. Especially if your moneybag wife is a gullible fool.
When one starts scheming against his/her spouse, the relationship is reached to a dead end. It is heartbreaking. It is better to get out of the bond formally then.
The author is good at wordplay. The book has some small yet impactful lines. For example:
I need a clean break.
The protagonist’s nature and real persona in his field are explored pretty nicely:
In his forest, he reigned supreme as the “man”, intelligent and powerful amidst dangerous beast, In Odisha, he had subordinates who respected him and bosses who treated him fairly. … It was the penance he had to pay in order to enjoy the rest of his year in peace and with self-respect.
The last line is in quite a contrast to the previous ones, right? Well, that is what a dishonest relationship does to a person.
The author seems to be a nature lover, be it the jungle or beaches, she explored nature very beautifully in her writings. The soothing presence of natural elements is seen in her writing:
I love the non-stop twittering of the birds. Don’t they pause for break in between their incessant chatter? What do they twitter about anyway? … I feel I’m in paradise with these friendly creatures entertaining me all the time. I am away from human negativity, malevolence, and harshness from those whom I trust. Just experiencing the simple existence has made me want to live again.
There are some cuss-words and references to adulteries, but the things are mentioned in a matter-of-factly tone and don’t look forcefully added for just marketing purposes. Of course, it makes the book exclusive to mature readers.
It is comparatively a simple “self-realization” or “finding thyself” story. Love is obviously there with many other attributes of life. If you like a book with rather simple storyline where nature is explored like a character, you will enjoy reading it.
Around 7 out of 10.
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