There are hardly any books that are written in Hindi. Hence, when Dil Dhoondhta Hai arrives, you look forward to what the author has to offer. You also keenly await the material that unfolds in these 200 odd pages since the author here is Rakesh Madhotra, who is long standing CEO with Sajid Nadiadwala's production house Nadiadwala Grandson. While he has been associated with the world of films and television for over two decades, now that he has written his first novel Dil Dhoondhta Hai, there is good interest to check out what he has to offer.
As it turns out, the book is a dramatic affair of a man who has loved and lost and while the chronicles of his life right from his childhood is well detailed, there is a psychological layer to Dil Dhoondhta Hai as well which keeps the reader captivated.
The book tells the story of Rahul who discovers love at different stages in his life. Whether it is the crush during school, first love in college, marital relationship with his wife or the infatuation that he has with his office colleague, he tries to explore love multiple number of times. However, call it his sensitive self or the fact that the way he approaches love is not always the most appropriate or plain bad fortune, there is struggle that he experiences at every quarter. How be battles his inner turmoil, tries to find peace with himself and his surroundings and ultimately there is realization that strikes forms the crux of the film.
One can definitely sense literary command in the written words by Rakesh Madhotra. He has flair for bringing in poetic 'andaaz' to every passage and that reflects in the flow of narrative as well as the vocabulary that he boasts of. For some, this may turn out to be a bit tough to read since the Hindi used isn't everyday kind and at places one needs to have a good command over the language yourselves in order to follow the intent behind it all. That said, this is what sets Rakesh apart as well because instead of taking a safe passage of bringing in everyday vocabulary, he makes sure to bring in literary element too.
There are also places in the book where one may question the core characterization of the central protagonist, Rahul. Is he really right in his thoughts, are his actions truly justifiable, is he a flawed individual, does he drop his guard way too soon, whether he truly deserves true love in his life, is he being unlucky way too many number of times - there are questions galore that one has while going through 20 odd chapters in the book.
However, all of this also means that as a reader you are involved in the life and times of Rahul. What is he searching for, will he really get that, how will he eventually manage love in his life, is there going to be a point of no return for him - these are quite a few questions as well for which you hunt for answers as the chapters unfold.
Of course, the conclusion does leave you with a heavy heart and you empathize with the lead character. While the storytelling as well as the situations do belong to a small town with an old fashioned appeal to them, on also gets an impression that perhaps Rakesh had designed the book intentionally in this manner so that his written word reaches out to the interiors of the country.
Though one waits to see how urban India picks up this novel, in those parts of the country where life still moves along slowly and the true sense of love still stays in a person's heart for years and sometimes even decades, Dil Dhoondhta Hai should make for a good read.
Price: Rs. 175/=
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