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April 29, 2011

Book Review - 24 : Love over Coffee



Author: Amrit N. Shetty
Publisher: Penguin India


Anup, a happy-go-lucky boy next door, finds himself a misfit in an IT company. On the bright side, he has great friends in office- Chetan, Subbu and Parag - to help him out of sticky situations. Also, in the same office is the love of his life, Rajni. But Rajni's strict family and her paranoia of tongue-wagging colleagues play villain in their love story forcing him to be satisfied with clandestine meetings, secret phone conversations and emails. Just as Anup decides to turn over a new leaf, sinister happenings at work force him to take some life-changing decisions- to quit his job and pursue his long-cherished dream of becoming a writer; and also, to marry Rajni.


There are bad books and there are really bad books. And then there are books which makes you feel like burning them... after you have mustered enough courage in completing them. Trust me, there is nothing more exhausting than going through such painful experience of reading and then reviewing such books. Love over Coffee is a book that is deliberately designed to confuse rather than engage. It's esoteric in parts, and plain indecipherable in others. Everything about it is so astonishingly incompetent, you are bound to think about the people associated with it - what the hell they were smoking while publishing this junk?


The holes in the script are so big that even MCD will feel ashamed filling them in. The author never feels important to tell the name of this IT company or its exact location in Delhi or even give any pointers in which time period this story is set in. It is never fully comprehended why Rajni's parents are against their relationship neither there is a reason provided why suddenly Anup's parents stop pestering him for marriage. And this one takes the icing on the cake. He writes one story in a night which is, hold on to your breath, praised by Rajni and he thinks it's enough to leave his professional career and start working as an author. Ever talk about practicality, dude!!


It's hard to care for any characters because the emotions are never real. You don't bother for any of them because not only they have written carelessly, they are so frigging boring. Every time any character need to curse the boss or take out frustration, all friends go to a shady and cheap restaurant 'Shiva' as if they are living in some remote village of India and IT people get peanuts...that they can't afford to have a nice meal or a drink at a proper place. This is invariably preceded and succeeded by the customary half page description of the order they take to travel, who gets dropped first and last, every frigging single time.


Anup is the most stupid character you will ever come across in books. He is confused, used as doormat, can't code to save his professional life and don't have the guts to talk to his parents about his GF. It is such a half baked, pathetic character that you can pull out all your hairs from the root canal, you will still be searching for consolation. To make matters worse, you at least expect some chemistry between the main leads in a so called clandestine love story. But there is no let up in this moronic tale. Infact i was tortured out of my wits going through their scenes. They are written so monotonously, i won't blame you for not connecting with their so called superficial pain. And seriously, someone needs to tell the author that corny dialogues like 'Tum to bade woh ho" interspersed between the narrative is neither funny nor romantic. This is such poor writing, and i am surprised no one at the publishing house noticed it.


There is huge build up to a short film made for a presentation to the higher management. But even that turns out to be such a farce because no one from the gang of friends hardly bothers to do anything when the credit for it is taken away from them. After that, when the so called twist comes as late as 200 pages into the book...you have clearly lost your patience to even appreciate it slightly, if at all you want to. There is zilch stability in thoughts as no particular direction is offered to the narrative to explore the minds of the protagonists.


I would like to take this opportunity to demonstrate the magnanimous nature of my personality. I am going with a generous 0.5/5 for Amrit Shetty's, Love over Coffee. It is a book which i read in appalled silence. It is dull and deary and there is absolute no saving grace in this travesty that's as memorable as a bad dream. If you are smart enough, exercise your right to buy books and stay away from this one completely. And idiots like me who invested in this novel should seriously think of legal options to sue the author. Such a shame!!


4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I finished reading that kiss in the rain . Total Bollywood ,rather Ekta Kapoor Serial.

Ben said...

But it has been published by Penguin, no less! How did the author swing that ????

Amit Gupta said...

@Anonymous

I haven't read it. Though i liked his first book, which was part thriller-part romance.

Amit Gupta said...

@Ben

That can be answered only by Penguin India. This was released along with 2 other Metro reads. One of them is Paritosh Uttam's 'Dreams in Prussian Blue' and i liked it. This was a complete SHOCKER!