Publisher: Indireads Inc.
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““It was permanent, that tattoo. The tattoo that said ‘Done With Men’. And it hurt! What on earth was I thinking? My habit of thinking out loud was bad enough, but tattooing my thoughts onto myself? This wasn’t happening to me.”“
Done with Men is a quirky, fun-to-read story by a debutante author. It charts an episode in the life of Kay, a self-proclaimed failure at relationships.
There are couples like Romeo and Juliet or our very own Krishna and Rukmani. And then, there are the couples-next-door we encounter in the world all around us; they could be our friends, neighbors or colleagues. Kairavi (Kay) and Vivian, fortunately or unfortunately, belong to the second category. This romantic comedy tells the story of the female lead, Kay, who is ‘done with men’ after a series of disastrous relationships. Shuchi Singh Kalra delivers a very Indian, yet Mills & Boon-ish story that serves as a good distraction. The book isn’t long, 98 pages are but an appetizer to a seasoned reader.
Thankfully, the author decides to focus on one incident in her heroine’s life in these pages, and doesn’t cram in unnecessary details or twists.The story progresses smoothly, if a bit predictably. Boy-meets-girl, mutual attraction, all the initial stages of courtship accomplished, obstacle to happiness sighted and conquered, ta da! Happy ending, in case you were biting your nails.
Knowing what’s on the last page did NOT stop me from reading on anyway, Kalra’s writing saw to that. Her style is simple and pithy, yet spot on. No fancy words or lofty sentiments for our Kay; she lives out a fast-paced Mumbai lifestyle with her best friend Baani, makes bad relationship choices time and again, drinks to her heart’s content and (as demonstrated) gets a tattoo in an almost-but-not-quite lesbian encounter.
What’s endearing about her, though, is that she’s like any other city-bred girl of this generation at the end of the day. Same insecurities, same emotional rollercoasters. (However, her ‘Thought Bubble’ reminded of Ana Steele’s inner goddess. Maybe it’s just me.. Or is it?) She’s very easy to relate to, even if her perfect love story is a bit unattainable for the vast majority out there!
So, what’s the verdict? If you’re looking for a quick and quirky read, Kay and her antics might amuse you. If you’re looking for soul-stirring romance though, you might want to try your luck elsewhere.