Reading this book was an experience in itself. When I started reading, I had no idea of the chinese residing in Calcutta nor the background information on how and when this community came into existence. Reading the stories was an insight into their life, the customes , the idiosyncrasies of their daily routine, and the hardships of being on a foreign land. Even with the parts of wit and well crafted sarcasm in certain dialogues, the book does not fail to leave an impact after each story.
In a story, two ladies chose one of each other's kids to marry as they sat outside their house one summer noon. Another story is from view of a small girl as she grows up watching her mother so dedicated to “Amitabh Buddha” temple and its caretaker. A girl drops out of school for wedding and her friend bears witness to how the wedding turns out to be in years. Another girl is forced to leave school following scoldings from a harsh teacher. Two kids create a mess in the flooded house for a fish and at another street , two girls part ways following the political crisis in the city.
One of my favorits story that deserves a special mention is Jade. Not just for the story it traces of the character but more for the style of narration. Mixed with the scenes as being played in TV, this story not jsut talks of her years but in a way the changes that happen to the surroundings.
There is a new perspective , a new understanding and a beautiful heart warming note to the stories. The writing is simple, the clear and concise sentences without any hidden meanings. The unsaid story is in not between the lines but at the end. The smiles , tears , struggle and contribution of the chinatown to Calcutta will never be forgotten after these stories. These stories showcase not just a new community but a new world just next to yours.
Price (Rs.) 199.00