Publisher: Leadstartcorp/Frog Books
Getting the book:
I got this book back in December from the author for a review but due to my infrequent travels and impulsive planning, simply kept delaying reading the book. Although I carried it in my bag almost the entire time, this week I finally decided to pick it up and read the whole thing before I get busy again. The only thing I kept thinking the entire time that I was reading it was why I kept procrastinating for so long. It’s a superbly fun read. The title ‘The Bogus Read’ and the illustrations on the cover give the definite first understanding- this is not to be taken seriously. No ‘anti-nationalism’ intended. This is satire at its best.
Story and Style:
The Bogus Read is a story of 5 engineering students who are addicted to Counter Strike. It is about them discovering a huge conspiracy by Pakistan to take over India without the latter realizing it. Would they be successful? Are five 20-year olds intelligent enough to take things in control and save the nation?
All prominent leaders from Indian politics and media and television industries are characters in the story taking place in ‘a galaxy far, far away’. There are Arjun Kejriwaal, PM Mody and his mitron, Arnub Gooswamy, Himaesh Rechamiya and his nasal voice, the Army Chiefs, Dawood Ebrahim among others driving the story. There are illogical explanations and events including a mosquito army, but then how far does logic take us anyway. The prologue is set in the times of the Kargil War but the plot doesn’t really focus on Kashmir or the war for that matter.
The writing style and story clearly talks about the sad state of affairs in Indian politics and the economy right now. It never says it but one can easily read between the lines to see the red-tapism in the bureaucracy that is being made fun of. The corruption, the star status of celebrities, the manipulation by the media and control of the media, the TV as a real idiot box and most importantly, the lowering IQ of the human race in general.
The author carefully mimics dialogues of the real life leaders. Reading the story makes you laugh out loud in those instances because you realize that’s exactly how they would say it and that someone actually wrote it down in a comedy. Of course none of it is to be taken seriously.
The imagination of the author is what impressed me- The timings of some jokes exactly like they would happen in real life and not a movie, the careless attitude of the characters and seemingly impossible tasks being carried out with ease, and most importantly, the idea that forms the major plot of the book.
Don’t expect literature when you pick up this book. The language is exactly how the youth of the country speaks today. It’s a fun read and should be read that ways. A great weekend read and travel companion it would be if you are looking for something light and witty.
My rating: 4.5/5
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