Looking for Love?

September 9, 2011

Book Review - 45 : A Waiting Wave

Author: Kulpreet Yadav
Publisher: Cedar Books

When Harry decides to move away from his wife Kareena, to faraway Port Blair, he is hoping the distance would blur the differences the two have acquired after marriage. But it is not to be. Gloomy, tired and already a pessimist, he is boating in a bay close to his father's house, when a catastrophe strikes – a tsunami. In the face of a sure death, Harry realises how shallow his expectations from the marriage have been. He wakes up later, alive, but where he shouldn't be – in the Island of the Sentinelese, a violent Negrito tribe, still in the stone-age. From Delhi, Kareena rushes to Port Blair and begins her search. As they near one another, both sick and wounded, the mistakes they have committed dance on their retinas.

Will the spirit of their love triumph over the impossibility of the terrain they are up against? Will the newly realised depth of their bond and the expanse of their love bail them out?

A waiting wave is a story which most of us can relate to - a hot-headed, impatient man and a submissive, professional woman. Their differences, deliberations and desperation in continuing this relationship form the basic core of the narrative. However, with constant switching back from present to past, the author does not allow you to emotionally invest in the characters. The author fails to bridge the gap between the characters and the audience, there is certain unexplained distance that never lets you feel the "pain" of the lead couple. It is book written with noble intentions, but one never feel sorry or happy for any of them....something which, in my opinion is essential for any good love story.

What is different and engaging are the portions where Harry encounters the tribals of Andaman Islands. These adventures of Harry with the tribal people brings in a refreshing change from the monotonous main track of the lead couple. We are exposed to a host of various plot points at this time in the narrative - the savage Sentinelese tribe, deadly salt-water crocodiles, the blood sucking leeches, the rampant malarial mosquitoes, abandoned British mansions and the ghosts in the bunkers of world war 2. All this, even though interesting to read, is buried under too much non-linear narrative style and ultimately, fails to enthuse any empathy with the characters. Yes, we are exposed to beautiful Andaman islands... but what would have worked far better for the book is a beautiful love story as well.

I am going with 2.5/5 for Kulpreet Yadav's second book, 'A waiting wave'. There is an inherent sincerity attached to the book but there are too many awkward pauses, cringing dialogues and logical loopholes for my liking. Read it for the lyrical descriptions of Andaman, if not for the love story.

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