Sharanya Misra

Remember the times of the boxy phone and the even boxier TV? The times when mobile phones hadn’t made their grand entry into every pocket and purse? When power cuts were not immediately handled with generator backups and on dark ‘current-less’ nights antakshari under the stars with cousins was the norm? When people looked at each other rather than at screens? When travel was not in the cold steely confines of a flying machine surrounded by strangers, but instead journeys, sometimes extending over days, were made in warm compartments bustling with people, food and stories. Yes, ‘the good old days’ as many of us would fondly reminisce.

If only we could draw the essence of these cherished memories and bottle them up forever, to take a whiff every now and then and lose ourselves in the ‘time that was’, right? Well, Supriya Newar’s Kalkatta Chronicles has done it!

 

Based in the Kolkata of her childhood, this book speaks of the author’s childhood in the days gone by. Most experiences in Kalkatta Chronicles though would actually resonate with anyone who grew up in that era, even outside¬† of Kolkata. The book is a delight to read, making you re-live the simple joys of the past. It is hilarious in places, where you recall the things you did back then that seem so silly in today’s times. In others, it is sentimental, bringing tears to your eyes upon remembering how simple…and real..things used to be. What’s stunning is also the way she talks of not just the processes or things, but also of people…the people who were such an integral part of life back then and have just disappeared from the spectrum of everyday life today. Truth be told, the book gives you a glimpse of your own childhood, and brings out an inexplicable urge to go back to it.


That Supriya Newar is a seasoned writer is apparent just a few lines into the book. Every blogger and/or aspiring author loves to read, especially read the kind of book that would inspire them to better their writing. Kalkatta Chronicles is that kind of a book. The writing is honest. That’s what it is. It is precise, knows exactly how to make you laugh, when to touch your heart and exudes a style that is impressive and evergreen. A few lines into the book I decided that Supriya Newar is a fantastic writer – an opinion that I stood firmly by till the very end.

All in all, Kalkatta Chronicles is an absolutely fantastic book. For those of us who grew up in the 1900s, this book is truly a ‘rear view reflection’, a great chance to fondly think back of our roots and wonder how fast things have changed so much! A great read for the new generations too, so they know how unique things were, not such a long time ago!

I would undoubtedly rate the book 5/5. For a fabulous mix of good stories, great humour, real emotions, excellent characterizations and loads of feel-good-nostalgia, go read, Kalkatta Chronicles!!

This seems to be nostalgic reading season for me! Read yet another book review reminding you of your childhood here.

For more book reviews, head here.

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