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Showing posts from February, 2017

My Beautiful Shadow - Radhika Jha

The first phrase that came to mind as I began reading ‘My Beautiful Shadow’ by Radhika Jha was that of ‘keeping up appearances’, albeit in Japanese society. The story is narrated in first person by the protagonist Kayo who you first know as a humble Japanese girl married to a very eligible young man holding a secure bank job. You are then drawn into Kayo’s everyday life where she is seen coping with loneliness and a desire to be accepted into modern day Tokyo. As an outlet, she finds an escape into consumerism and her experiences can best be described as exhilarating and haunting at the same time. Yes, two very different emotional experiences but its when you read Kayo’s story that you understand their coexistence. Kayo takes retail therapy to a new level. This is aptly demonstrated in her experience of entering a shopping centre with its overarching domes and glittering displays or how she narrates to us her experience of entering a changing room. What’s so magical about these mundan…

Sab Moha Maya Hai - For The Sake of Valentine's Day!

14th February, Valentine’s Day. A day we are told we must “celebrate” as it epitomises this wonderful emotion that we as humans are capable of – Love.

“So, what are your plans for the day?” I was asked this question about a million times today and all I said was “Oh! I don’t know, I’m very unromantic!” to which I got responses like “But it’s the day of love” or “Come on! you need to celebrate love!” and so on. Having reflected upon this small talk that people often engage in to ease the awkward silences, I felt the need to put my thoughts to paper about the difference between romance and love as I find the two are often confused- one for the other. Romance is an expression of love, not love itself. Love is when you consistently strive for the wellbeing of another despite it causing you discomfort or pain. It is unconditional, not based on trivialities like tokens of affection which have sadly come to become measures of the extent of love. If you buy me a cake, you love me 30%, a design…

Short Girls - Bich Minh Nguyen

I was intrigued by the title. Of course I was intrigued by it! Having grown up as a ‘tall’ girl in India where the average height of a female is around 5ft 0”, I learnt how to tactfully deal with ‘tall’ girl comments whether in school, at the cinema or even when trying to buy a decent pair of shoes! Having moved to the UK, this is rarely a matter of interest to the general populace. This post however is not about tall girls. It is about those at the opposite end of the spectrum. Obviously.  This post also doesn't adhere to the geographical boundaries of South Asia. However, books by other diverse writers will now make an occasional appearance on Desi Lekh.  Short Girls by Bich Ming Nguyen tells us the story of two sisters Van and Linny Luong of Vietnamese origin living in the US. Apart from their short stature, they seem to share little else. Van is a studious lawyer who seeks comfort in a stable job and relationship. Linny on the other hand, is more adventurous in both her career t…