Hours and hours of a Sunday afternoon, better part of a Saturday evening after work or even holidays, spent frantically looking for that perfect book. One that will feel right the moment you hold it in your hands. You read the first page and then are filled with this overwhelming desire to read on andÂ never stop till you have devoured the book. Till you have assimilated every fine detail, everyÂ intricate sentence, you feel restless and unsatiated. The Last Song of Dusk, by Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi,Â is one such book. It makes all those hoursÂ spent hunting for a novel worthwhile.
In the sprawling backdrop ofÂ Udaipur and Bombay inÂ colonial India, Shanghavi unravels a book so riveting that you cannot help but readÂ on.Â The narrative transports the reader to the 1920’s to live and experienc the joy, grief, love, loss, separation, ofÂ Anuradha and Vardhaman Gandharva.
The colorful language is fresh and really bold.Â The personifications, allegories, analogies, are what makes it interesting. It has a mix ofÂ fable, magic and folklore and followsÂ in the steps of Salman Rushdie, Arundhati Roy and Paulo Coelho.Â His style of bold story telling will really go down well with those bored with an overdose of Jhumpa Lahiri’s tales of second generationÂ indian-Americans (hope she comes up with something more refreshing next time).