Saturday, August 23, 2008
Trust her, she is my sweetheart.
'Trust me' is the title of this chic-lit book. Its authored by my sister, Rajashree, and published by Rupa. This book is moving well, they have printed the eighth edition in one and a half years. You will find a well written review here.
Since she is my sister, I am not qualified to review her book. There is too much sibling rivalry here. After all, she is my younger sister, and her novel got published before mine! Yes, she wrote it earlier too, but but but...
But, I am qualified enough to review her!
Let me go as far back as I can remember. No one else can evoke childhood memories like a sis.
We used to tease her that a buffalo once stepped on her nose, thus it lost its shape.
I think this could be why she became a writer. Imagine all that angst, the confusion of not knowing whom to trust.
Yes, their were signs and symptoms, but no one had warned us that they could lead to this. For example, in class two, Raju had written the first page of a novel, 'the list of characters'.
When she grew out of Enid Blyton, her concentration increased.
Once, I walked into the house and Raju was lying on the floor, blocking my way into the room, feet up on the sofa, reading a novel. I stepped over her but she didn't miss a word.
'I could have been a rapist!' I said, pissed at being ignored so blatantly.
I loved to snatch the book she was reading and make her run after me. The times when both of us were reading the same book, the only 'safe' place was the toilet. Our favorite haunt, during the teen years, was not a disco, but a library. We hid the special books behind the boring ones so that no one else would get to them.
I don't know if this is connected, but Raju was always in a hurry, always late, and always looking for lost books. She drove her bicycle standing, and the mohalla boys stole her cycle seat to assert that they noticed.
The best part was that she didn't yet have her own personality, she was my sheput (tail). She allowed me to cut her hair, she accompanied me with a pen and notebook to note down points, (during the eve-teasing article we wrote for nagpur times, where we interviewed thirty boys), she even went to the university library to take notes for me to study for the competitive ftii entrance exam.
She danced with me at new year parties, she defended me in face of society (mother dear), she looked up to me. She stood outside when I was being interviewed for ftii. She was the most loyal sister one could ever hope for.
And then I broke her heart.
I went off to ftii, and began to discover a new me all by myself.
And that's how Raju became Rajashree. She won a national award for her diploma film, The Rebel.
And then she announced that she was going to write a novel. It was a seven year nightmare. The room had to be with a view of the mountains in the middle of Mumbai. The writing table had to face the window. Whenever she traveled, she took all her handwritten sheets, printed sheets, and plain sheets. And when she wrote, she couldn't be disturbed. Not for a movie, neither for a drive. Never for a chat. 'Not now, I am writing,' was the standard response.
Culture is born in absence of culture.
Is it that undigested words have to get churned out when they are swallowed with intensity, that makes a reader into a writer?
How dare I try to dissect the muse? She is no less than a Goddess. May she always keep us at her feet.