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Book Review: Like a Bird on the Wire

Bird on the Wire

Chhavi Bhardwaj, an IAS officer currently posted in Jabalpur, as Collector. “Like a Bird on the Wire” is her first book. It’s a fiction with a lucid narrative style that oscillates between past and present. The plot is set around the life of the IAS officers and people related to them and all of it is blended with a romantic story between NethraKaul and AvinashRathore.

The story begins with, “…It had been seven years he had last heard from her. Seven years! And though a part of him was relieved, even happy; the other part was already ruminating on the pun- the subliminal implications of that terse ‘hard work paying off.’ Was is relief?Nostalgia?

Anxiety?

He couldn’t put a finger on that flustered him all the more..because even today, seven bloody years down, nothing, nothing could affect him the way she did.”

As the story progresses, you will realize that there’s actually a love triangle. The novel has an honest tone, which gives an impression that the author has literally bared her heart out.  You’ll find it in the author’s ways of explaining and language, which has a lot of “Hinglish” and “Hindi-influenced” phrases even like “maalmaam,” “Humara GL kaisa ho..,” “patta,” among others. To add to this, there are colloquial phrases like “Avinash-Rathore-sort-of-reply,” “how-to-stop-sulking-and-start-living’,” “no how-have-you-beens, etc” – making the entire story look more real. It feels as if someone’s story is written with different names, and some slight changes in the backdrop. It sounds that real!

Throughout the story, Avinash is described as a sincere and clean IAS officer. There is also a glimpse of author’s personality in it. For example, author loves trekking and exploring places. Its an eight-part story. The story can lure the y-generation spirit by also talking of “Game of Thrones”, “Fifty Shades of Grey,” “One Direction,” DeepikaPadukone’s Kurta-palazzos combo, “Comedy Nights with Kapil”, and so on. It also throws light on the trendsetter, OMG, a 24×7 news channel run by one the largest mass media companies in India, and the materialistic character, Amit Bhargava. For Amit, his friends were “vital inventory resources,” starting from Bacardi Rum/ Smirn Off/ Johnie Walker Scotch to free-dining in seven star hotels, and paid holidays. He is a true opportunist. But what is he doing here in the story? Why was Nethra staying aloof from him despite of being engaged to him? They’re engaged yet she doesn’t want Amit in her life. A lot of confusing questions will sprout in your mind. To get answers to all your questions, read this sweet yet complicated novel by Chhavi Bharadwaj.

Publisher: Amaryllis

Available on: Amazon India & Flipkart

Price: INR 319 & 320, respectively