Author: Rabindranath Tagore
Price: Rs. 195/-
Being a Tagore Book, I expected “The Wreck”, translation of his creation “Naukadubi” to be an extremely complex book full of similies and metaphors and complex words and characters difficult to comprehend in general. I know pre conceived notions aren’t good to have but that’s what you get when you are picking up a book by a Nobel Prize winner in literature! So it is with these feelings that I started turning the pages of “The Wreck”. However, what I came across was a 350 odd page dramatic yet simple narrative, enlightening in its own sense.
The book is divided into 62 short chapters, very fast paced, so much so, that you keep turning the pages without realising that you have reached the very end.
The story revolves around four characters – Ramesh Babu, Hemnalini, Kamala and Dr. Nalinaksha. Fate works in mysterious ways and causes a mix up in the possible combinations in which these four people could be made into couples. One by one they all come to know the truth which is both sad and good. Sad because when the first one came to know partial truth, he could have told the others and saved all including himself a lot of trouble, to some extent. Good because it is ultimately this truth which comes to their rescue, to some extent.
In a very subtle manner, Tagore has interspersed the story with the difference of caste and creed prevalent at the time. What strikes the reader (or at least a reader like me) apart from the ingenious plot and brilliant writing is the beautiful relationship of Hemnalini with her father, Annada Babu. In times of today in a country like ours it comes as wonderful surprise to know of a father daughter relationship so beautifully open and deeply meaningful.
All in all, highly recommended but for the last page, because it reads, when you don’t want it to – “The End.”