‘Theory of Karma-and-Death… There was just one flaw in this otherwise perfect theory– the assumption that a caring God was diligently keeping track of every individual’s good and bad deeds; something that Hiranya and I knew was simply not true. And yet, He did seem to ensure a balance of sorts. Clearly there was something else at work here, something a lot more straightforward, something a lot less reassuring.’
Meet Kalyani — a successful career woman who had cracked the God-code in her teens and had defined her own life-code with the help of King Hiranyakashyap. That is how, at forty, Kalyani lives life on her own terms and has it all – a good career, a decent amount of money, and the carefree life of a singleton.
Until the layoffs, that is.
That is when life begins to unravel, and all of a sudden, Kalyani is faced with the distasteful prospect of laying people off, the disturbing prospect of being laid-off, the chilling spectre of cancer, and the unfathomable Weepies.
As life spirals out of control, Kalyani finds herself teetering at the edge, desperately clinging on to sanity with the help of a mysterious psychic and a dead aunt.
Bend Your Knees & Do Your Best is a slice-of-life drama about the Indian quest for ever-elusive happiness. It uses the tale of Hiranyakashyap to explore how many of us componentize that state-of-being in order to make it achievable, and how that very fact gets in the way of us achieving it.
While the story dwells upon our hire-and-fire corporate work culture, our materialistic lives, our devotion to ‘wealth creation’, and inevitable middle-age angst, it is actually a tale of growing old and facing our fears
Fiction Leaves me feeling content. Complete. At peace.
The book is so hefty that I sometimes use this as my dumbbells. Well, I started reading this book last June and its almost 10 months now. I have finally finished this book. On a side note, you can bend your knees but you won’t be able to bend the book. The Book is whopping 530+ pages. Is it bad? Honestly, there were many parts which seemed to slog a bit or a bit too much. The pace of the book is decent but the gigantic 530+ pages should have hit the gym and be a little slimmer if it did go through some good editing. On the other hand, it makes it a well-lit read and doesn’t get too heavy which makes this book a good read. That’s my take on it- I love light reads in fiction and I absolutely love this paperback.
Talking about Outer beauty. the cover and blurb are appealing especially if you are working in the IT sector. Bend your knees – No romance here. Just bend your knees and do your best.
Kalyani has many strengths as a first-time novelist, including lovely pacing, sensual prose and the ability to capture the warmness of the human spirit through her protagonist Kalyani and her friend Hiranya. Kalyani- for sure has the potential to become a literary prodigy. Her witty one-liners, raw content should stay. but her drag and brag in some place needs to cut-down. The author had the prudence to include a glossary at the end of the book and this should really help the readers.
Refreshingly, the IT research jargons in this novel are never window dressing, as the storytelling beauty of Kalyani is integral to the plot. And the story takes unexpected turns on its way to a beautiful conclusion. It is a magnificent novel. Do not miss, this novel is often uproariously funny.
Latest posts by Prakhyath Rai (see all)
- Book Review: Vishwas Aur Main By Anchal Saxena - September 17, 2020
- Book Review: Unspoken: A Bouquet of Short Stories By Sadhana Wadhwa - June 15, 2020
- Book Review: She Fell to Rise in Love By Surbhi Islam - April 2, 2020