The New York Times called Chetan Bhagat as the biggest-selling English-language novelist in India’s history. With his first three books already being widely read in India, he released his fourth book recently which generated a lot of anticipation before the release on Twitter and other online spaces.
Chetan Bhagat released the new book on Oct 8th, titled, 2 States: the story of my marriage. It’s a story of inter-state marriage in India. Love story of a Punjabi guy Krish, and a Tamil Brahmin girl Ananya. Marriage of paranthas and idlis, paneer and coconut. Chetan, in his own style, dedicates this book to his in-laws. In the disclaimer, he says, though the book is inspired by his own family and experiences, he requests the book must be seen as a work of fiction.
The initial pages of the book are set up in IIM-Ahmedabad. Krish and Ananya meet in the canteen for the first time and eventually over a few days of combined study, fall in love. Life is great for them until their families meet each other. It takes sometime before they realize that they may not be able to convince their families to support their marriage. The twist in the tale is, they want to marry with their parents’ consent rather than choosing the easy way of eloping. Inter-caste marriages are still a taboo in India and let alone an inter-state marriage of a Punjabi and a Tam Brahmin.
The meeting of two families on the convocation day at the college, sets the drama into motion. Rest of the story is about how youngistan fights oldistan to get the approval for marriage. The boy tries to get acceptance from the girl’s family and the girl tires to get acceptance from the boy’s family while both of them are trying to get acceptance from their respective families. I am not going to reveal everything here as I don’t want to be a suspense spoiler.To ease the nerves of those who involve too much into stories, let me say that it has a happy ending. In fact, how can it be made into a bollywood movie if it has a sad ending.
The cultural differences of north-indian families and south-indian families are portrayed very well in a funny way.
Humor is one of the best things in this book. Loaded with some really good similes and metaphors.
If you are a Chetan Bhagat’s fan, you will enjoy this book more than his previous book, Three mistakes of my life.
For those who are not fans of Chetan’s books, or haven’t read his books yet, I would say, you pickup this book if you want to kill a boring afternoon with ‘a quick read’.
If you are a fan of literary fiction and classics, if you read more of Tharoors, Seths, Roys, and Ghoshs, I would say it is better you stay away from this book.
Coming to me, I am not a great fan of Chetan’s books. I enjoy reading his books as they are very easy to read. Yes, I do admire what he has achieved: success, fame, and of course money, with his books. I like his diction and his subtle observations and the way he weaves them in to the stories. I think, the best from him is yet to come. For me, the best till now is no doubt his first book, Five point someone.
To end, I am sure this book is going to be made into a movie. Unlike his previous books being made into bollywood films, this story best suits for south-indian movies. Chetan, any of the Telugu movie producers already approached you?
By the way, do you want to write like Chetan Bhagat?