Publisher: Rupa Publications
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The new Chetan Bhagat book is the latest in a series of fertilizers with which you can hope to get half – results.
The book is very craftily titled “Half Girlfriend”. The title made waves on social media, but alas, this was a case of false advertising. Allow me to tell you that this title very cleverly camouflages the story, which is not about an English-challenged boy who falls in love with an upper-class girl who only wants to be “frands” with her “half-boyfriend”. Two minutes of silence for people tired of this stereotype.
Sorry, I lied. I can’t actually remain silent for two whole minutes. So I will continue with my rants. This book is not a love story, strictly speaking. This is a Chetan Bhagat book which contains a major plot within
the main subplot. It is about a boy – nay (hold your breath for the soul sucking twist) a poor Bihari boy who once upon a time was a prince of Dumraon. Well, he still is, but instead of the rich raja he should have been, he now lives alone with his queen mother in his desolate and crumbling bat enclave a.k.a. The Haveli. This is a story of how he followed his heart. It is also about youth empowerment and rural development. In other words, the same themes prominently featured in each and every book by His Holiness.
The plot then goes on to how the world’s richest man, who has plagued the face of this Earth with a poorly programmed and bloated Windows OS, is roped in – Bill Gates, henceforth referred to as Billu Bhai. So Billu Bhai got his sequel after making a dramatic entrance in One Night at the Call Centre.
The remains of the story contain some meticulously planned escapades which will set your pulses racing – in desperation. The vivid imagination with which our Hero stares at the girl while he is busy dribbling the ball, ladies and gentleman, hold your breath and die.
The “half- boyfriend” tries hard to impress his rebellious “half-girlfriend” who is so confused that she will make you cry out loud in exasperation. The progress of their relationship makes Ross and Rachel’s on-again-off-again affair look like the speed of light.
I started reading this book in a metro journey to escape. After an hour of half-conspiracies and the excitement when Billu enters the game, I found the mundane metro crowd far more interesting than the book itself.