Saturday, August 24, 2013

Book Review: The Paperback Badshah

The Paperback Badshah : The comical journey of a 100 Rupee author (by author Abhay Nagarajan) is a funny rendition of an aspiring Indian author to fulfill his dream of publishing a book. Its about his journey and the mistakes he makes, his misadventures and the lessons learnt. Its about facing roadblocks with regards to his dream of being a writer, creative challenges, publishing, marketing, promotions, feedback from readers etc.

Judging a book by its cover -

Who should read this book -
1. Readers preferring a time-pass, weekend read
2. Budding Indian soon-to-be authors - If you wish to publish a book, you might want to read this for tips

What's the story like - The book is about a young Financial advisor Raghu who is not interested in the corporate life. He finds it difficult to achieve his ever increasing monthly sales target. At the same time, he is also working on his first book titled "The Paperback Badshah". Unfortunately, the pressure he faces in his corporate life is not allowing him to focus on writing his book. He then takes a bold decision, bold in Indian scenario, of quitting his corporate life. As expected, he comes under immense scrutiny from his family and other supposedly successful relatives. However, he stands his ground and spends the next few months working on the book amidst attending creative writing classes and meeting friends / like minded writers and strangers. The book describes in detail his journey from being a weekend writer to being a published one and the challenges he faces on the way. Mind you, its a fun read so everything is described in a light-hearted manner.

How's the writing - Creative is the first word that comes to my mind. The author has used creativity in his story-telling and his descriptions of almost every situation is somewhat different compared to other masala books. Some might feel that the author's creativity falls down to PJ levels - and I agree to an extent. As it is, there's a thin line between creativity and PJ. The author has structured the book based on various stages of book writing and publishing. Being a book published by Indian author, its bound to be error-prone. All I can say, its not as much as you would find in other books. However, I strongly feel, we are yet to take "proof reading" as an integral part of writing the book. The book also touches upon the Indian scenario of masala authors becoming more successful by writing masala stories while the literary ones find it difficult to sell books in India.

So, what do I think - One time read. A time-pass read. I personally don't think there's anything out of the ordinary in this book. If you want to spend 4-5 hours of your weekend and don't know how, this could be one of my suggestions. Also, if you want to be a writer, it will give you an insight on how to write a book and the various steps after writing the draft version like seeking publishers, rejections etc.

My Rating: 3/5

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