Book Reviews, Books, Fiction, Reviews

BOOK REVIEW: Saudade by Husna Mohammad

Pages: 149, Paperback

Published: September, 2017

Cover Rating: 5/5

This year, I  have read  few short stories. Recent addition being Saudade written by creative Indian Writer, Husna Mohammad. Saudade is a collection nine different stories that cover a variety of topics but every one of them share same geographical location: Kerela, Southern India. The stories revolve around the social, political and cultural environment that exists in the region.The title itself explains by  the meaning of the word Saudade, which is incidentally the running thread in most of the stories.

Short stories generally mean different plots and these stories are centred around the lives of people from different walks of life and shaped by their own fate and circumstance. The first story, “Che Guevera’s Legacy” narrates the story of a young man, enamoured by political idealism and inspired by Che Guevara who at a later stage is forced to come to terms with reality. Then moving on to other stories there is a story full of illusions and probably witchcraft, and other topics like loneliness of old age, struggles with reality, sensitivities of traditional excluvism and the last one (one of my favourites from this book) is about a young boy who is sexually molested.

I have to compliment the author of the book on her understanding of variety of themes and then transforming them with her creative imagination into written pieces such that we, readers, could feel those emotions that the author wrote with. The writing style is smooth and highly appreciable. The narrative voice is a mixture of third and first person but mostly third. The formation of characters in these stories are at their best but again, I will put much emphasis on the vastness of storylines and how realistic they are.

My favourite picks from Saudade are Che Guevera’s Legacy, because of the historical point of view and conflicting political ideologies, Beevitha, for the imaginative touch, The Diary of an Insomniac and My name is Arif Mushtaq and I am Gay. These written pieces are a must read for any reader. Not only these pieces provide an outlook of Indian society as a whole but also they are well written with a flow and showcase different yet important themes.

4 out of 5


About the author:

Husna is a writer, poet and freelance content strategist. She is a dentist by profession, with a journalism degree. She abandoned a lucrative career to follow her dream of being a full time writer. Her first book, My Lyrical Symphony, an anthology of eclectic poems, was published in 2008. Husna currently resides in the picturesque coastal town of Cochin, Kerala, in southern India.

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