Dreams in Prussian Blue by Paritosh Uttam, is one of the series of the Metro Reads introduced by Penguin. About 200 pages long, paper back, priced at Rs.150, by its dull blue cover may look ordinary and boring to some but has a story line truly distinct and well narrated by Uttam. He has to his credit a number of short stories published from time to time in well reputed magazines and online forums. His magic has worked yet again in his first long work.
The story revolves around a new age couple, Michael and Naina and their tryst to fight and fit into life, well, at least Naina’s. The story has it all, college day crushes, first kiss, rebellious heroine denying all comforts of life and defying her parents wishes just to be with live-in partner of hers and the aftermath miseries and hardships. Does it sound familiar and too clichéd? Well it may, but the beauty of this novel lies in the fact that Uttam has weaved around all too routine emotions with freshness and manages to give you a gripping tale.
The story starts when Naina develops a liking for her college senior Michael and finds herself drifting towards him even before she realizes. The two decide to live-in with a mutual consent, she carrying the responsibility of the man of the house and Michael enjoying the opportunity to just do what he loves to, painting. All through this journey she is pushed down the lane of retrospect time and again when the uncaring and selfish Mickey plays blind to her tribulations to provide the best she can for the both of them. The situation could not get worse for her with Michael losing his eye sight in an accident and her feeling guilty for it. What follows are her efforts to support him still, fight the good old college friend turned into a savior at times of distress turned into a leering vulture feeding on her mind and emotions. She treads on the path of lies just to keep up with Michael’s moods and preventing him from any emotional setback. While all this Michael finds his big break but just then the world of lies that Naina is forced to construct comes down crumbling on them.
The novel has its own twists and turns and has good literary content unlike most new novels on the racks these days. A very well thought out story, with the execution even better and has a smooth flow of events. The author has very ingeniously fitted many contradictions, whether it is the name of his protagonist or among the shades displayed by the three main characters. The author displays brilliance in writing with a good writing style and way above average vocabulary, yet maintaining its simplicity. The author is definitely here to stay and we can lookout eagerly for his new works as he is one of the most promising writer in the ‘young and emerging writers’’ category.
Overall Dreams in Prussian Blue… is a nice read with money well spent and leaves a lingering effect that lasts long after you have finished it.
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