There is no telling that I was an ardent Chetan Bhagat fan when the initial three, no four books released from our most acclaimed Indian fiction writers. They set a precedent that the later books by Chetan Bhagat failed to live up to – with Half Girlfriend I had almost thought I had it all and decided to completely give up on Chetan Bhagat. I almost never noticed that he had a new book released until during my recent visit to India, a friend gifted me the latest installation from Chetan Bhagat, and a signed copy at that, there was no way I could stop myself and repeating what I do every time a book from this author comes to my hand – give it another chance. Surprisingly, this time Chetan Bhagat had a different concoction of story.
As the opening episode of the book correctly relates with Bhagat taking a stab at himself for what his recent books had become, the IIT/IIM love stories, this, quite unlike the others is an un-love story. Of course, we still have strong IIM links (guess Bhagat can’t let that get away completely), this story is quite unlike the few Bollywood storyline like scripts that he has been delivering through the last few books. A welcome change after all.
“I felt I had done enough love stories, and it is sometimes equally important in life to unlove and move on, as much as it is to fall in love,”said the bestselling author while revealing the preview of The Girl in Room 105
When Keshav fell deeply for his immensely talented junior in IIT, Zara Lone, little did he know the extent of things that love could lead him to do or the trials that life would throw his way. A struggling IIT passout rendering classes in an IIT training institute, Keshav tries hard to win back his love, Zara who eventually settled down with the millionaire and ex-IITian Raghu. However, the story takes a dark turn when Keshav and Raghu lose Zara from their lives. The final messages from Zara to Keshav sends him down a path that leads to several wrong evidences on what really happened to Zara and the storyline travels from Delhi to Kashmir and Hyderabad before Keshav and his naïve friend Saurabh finally decodes the mystery behind Zara’s demise.
“Thank you. For showing me what love is all about. And thank you for also teaching me to never love someone too much.”
Bhagat skillfully weaves the corruption in the system and throws a spotlight on the issues in Kashmir – especially the conflicts between the youth of Kashmir and the military, each right in their own way while Keshav works through the murder mystery. The best part of reading CB’s books is that you fall in love with all the characters, even the negative ones. He ultimately justifies everyone’s action implying that no one ever is born a criminal, circumstances make them one. Keshav is the star of the story and is a tragic hero who finally becomes more worthy than the love that he ever received from Zara.
KindleandKompass Verdict – 3.5/5
Overall a much better book from Chetan Bhagat and we are glad that he has once again lived up to the mantel of being one of India’s finest young authors. Go pick up this book and give it a read and let us hope for more creative books from him.