First of all, i would like to thank IndiBlogger to give me this opportunity to read such a book.
Mr. Sharad Paul has to be applauded for his effort..!!
This book has 3 main characters & couple of supporting ones too.
Kumar, Raman & Lakshmi – 3 Inseparable friends
Gowrie – The Teacher
Rajinder, Mira & Kama lam – The Eunuchs
MGR – The Marlon Brando of Tamil movies
The story begins in Tamil Nadu, India with 3 friends who pass their time watching the river Kaveri, where Kumar, the best in kite flying, teaches Raman how to fly kites with Lakshmi who gets her special home made burfis for the boys.
They go to a local school together, listen to their teacher Gowrie who inspires them everyday & pass time like all school going kids would do.
Kumar & Raman get wind of a competition in a nearby state, & they falsify their health state for absence from school, to participate in the kite flying event.
Their kite is given a name by the bookie, “China Moon” . China Moon wins the duel, & they get money for the win. As they head back home, their act was over & the local head master caught them red-handed. The result being, they get suspended from school for the rest of the year.
Lakshmi’s parents let her know that she is to be married to her perverted uncle. She tries to say no, but to no avail. She had fallen in love with Kumar & wanted to live with him. But seeing no option, she jumps in the Kaveri, & ends her life.
As their life moves on, Raman’s parents send him to Madras, so that he can stay with his uncle & help in the family business. He boards the train, which is an unpleasant ride for him due to the worthless commuters whose dirty habits got him nauseous.
Now here is the twist in the story!!
When he reaches Madras, & searches for his uncle outside station, he is abducted.!! Raman wakes up in a dark room, with his hands tied to a chair. He manages to free himself of one hand, & tries searching what has he lost. He finally realizes what he lost…
The Eunuchs had abducted him, & now had made him one of them. They took good care of him, christened & gave him a new name….
Ramani, took many weeks, months to get adjusted to this life. Once on the beach, she spots her parents walking & when she cries out to them, they get scared saying, run for your life the eunuch has arrived..!! that broke her heart completely.
The Alis ( eunuchs are also called as Alis) go & gatecrash weddings, attending a newborn’s christening, ward off bad luck from new flats & that’s how they make money.
Its in one of these functions when everyone gets to know Ramani, who can’t hide her love for Micheal Jackson’s songs, & usually does the Glass walk (Moon walk) with perfection.
Ramani starts to get used ti her new life, but ultimately her inner self always wants to be free, run away from here.
Mean while, Kumar has opened his own salon, i.e Cool Cut.. The only salon which is fully air conditioned. He has a poster of MGR, who is like a demi god for everyone. Every house has his picture, people can give up their life if he asks them to! That’s his status.
Also, on the wall is a kite which he never flew post the news of Lakshmi’s death. He happens to get in contact with a news article, which stated a girl was found, left to die in River Kaveri, now given a home in Convent. Kumar goes into a frenzy. Millions of doubts, probabilities roam in his mind. Is she alive? i hope she is.. Is she OK?
When he reaches the convent, they get a girl on the wheel chair. Kumar’s happiness knew no bounds when he looked at Lakshmi. The jump in Kaveri ended on a rock, giving her a slipped disc. Kumar who had longed for her, wasted no time & proposed to Lakshmi, who was hesitant, as she didn’t want to be a liability to him, but later accepted.
Meanwhile, Ramani waited for the perfect opportunity, which she got on a day when Rajinder, the head of the group & Kama lam, the mysterious healer went ahead with their duties.
Mira, had known that Ramani never belonged here & let her leave. As Ramani runs far away from this place to her hometown, she stops for a break & finds out about a kite flying competition. She readily agrees to participate & names her kite as “China Sun” as “China Moon” was already taken. The duel reaches to the finale & Kumar starts doubting the competitor as they had both made the same moves, but Ramani won!! As Kumar spoke to Ramani, he realized it was his friend, Raman!! He thought, there was nothing more he needed in life. He took home Raman to meet Lakshmi, who too was overjoyed to see him. They lived happily ever after with Ramani being the first woman barber to cut hair.
Rajinder, on the other hand had always had a soft spot for all her Alis, & even for Ramani. She would pay a policeman 500 rupees every month to make sure Ramani has no problems. She inquires about the people she stays with, & gets to know about Lakshmi who is crippled.
Kamalam being the mysterious healer, goes to Goddess Kali, prays for a day by fasting, and asks for the girl to get life back in her legs. Lakshmi gets her feet back, & she can have a good life ahead.
The story ends with Kumar, going to his town to search Gowrie the teacher & telling her how much of an inspiration she was to them.
Honestly, i had never expected the book to turn out in such a way.
But this is really something which made me write so much.
I read this book in one shot, & it was worth it..!!
My rating – 4.5/5