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Sunday 9 February 2014

Book Review: Nazaqat by Sasha H Singhal

About the book:
Naazani, a shy girl with a lonely childhood, was born and brought up in Dehradun. She moves to a metropolitan for further education and gets absorbed. In a series of events, she decides to adopt prostitution and becomes one of the most successful high profile escorts of the city with the help of her manager Sharat.
In a quest to be successful, she leaves her friends behind and dedicates more time to her profession. Nazaqat witnesses a police raid at a nearby place and the real scenario of prostitution terrifies her.She decides to take a stand and do something about it. However, Sharat convinces her that she is not powerful enough to make a difference
Nazaqat retires and pool all her money and starts a restaurant – Joy
foods in partnership with Sharat. The business grows and soon enough they have numerous outlets in various cities and Naazani Singh Shekhawat emerges as a significant entrepreneur of nation.
To cherish the old memories, she organizes a group together and calls all her old friends. Next morning, it is found that something drastic happened the night before.
Meanwhile, she invites an author – Matthews, who is an old acquaintance to pen down her own biography. He visits her each night and in a series of ten nights, her story finds its crescendo.
Will prostitution be legalized?  What’s her intention with the biography she is planning? What shall be the fate of Naazani Singh Shekhawat aka Nazaqat?
Nazaqat is a very detailed and carefully woven story which is a unique blend of thrill and drama. It is a refreshing story about a girl who adopts prostitution on her own will and starts a quest to legalize prostitution in India. While it’s entertaining because of the commercial voice, it also addresses grave issues of feminism, prostitution and homosexuality in society.
About the author:
The identity of the author remains a mystery: Mathews, Harsh A singhal, or Sasha H, Singhal. (wink)
Read our author interview here.
My Review:

The author's setting, plot, idea, narration, character etching all are fairly commendable. The part I like the most was that the story is replete with twists and turns and that helps to keep the reader hooked till the last page.
The distressing aspect, if any, was an abrupt ending and the editing especially for a grammar Nazi.
The book takes a neutral take on human foibles and human choices. With rhetoric comments on marriage writers life morals et al, this is undoubtedly worthy of a read.
Also, with fallible characters what sets this book apart is the fact that he does not attempt to reveal any dark side or pretend to have a funny bone. in other words unlike contemporary authors the author does not try to force his humor or seriousness upon anyone, particularly the characters and the readers. Smoothly read, and fortunately not one of the books trying to get into IIT of contemporaries, if you know what I mean.
The poem whose stanza is given before each chapter is exotically and brilliantly crafted. The character of Nazaqat is so exquisite, one can't help but smile at her idiosyncrasies.
Add to that the social tangent that the author introduces by addressing the issues of homosexuality, prostitution in a way that blends in the novel flawlessly, and you have a perfect read.
My judgment:
A very open ended book which dies at one level mark the triumph of good over evil nevertheless leaves much to the readers interpretation. overall a pretty serene read.
Best line:

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The Hunger Games
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A Tale of Two Cities
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Jane Eyre
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A Christmas Carol
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
The Time Machine
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
The Da Vinci Code

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