Book Review of The Cord by Sredhanea Ramkrishnan


The cord starts with a bunch of people at a roundtable , dividing territories between the soon to be two nations. Each character has a succinct detail mentioned about them. The wannabe British 'babu' Mukherjee has an inferiority complex, the British representative, Beaumont, has a superiority complex (duh!) so forth. This chapter is well researched and factually accurate , apart from the characters of course, but I'm sure the conversation around that went on something like that . Jamadar Ashraf Ullah of the British Army is heavily influenced by Jinnah. And concerned for his family's safety in the Hindu land, he decides to move to Pakistan...only his son Azad doesn't seem to share his feelings. At seventeen, he decides to run away from home. Not just because of his differences with his Abbu, but also for a girl. Ashraf Ullah in Amitabh Bachchan from K3G fashion disowns him. The book then further gets more complicated as the lives progress. Azad lives and grows up at his father's Hindu best friend from the Army , Major Vinay's house, who raises him like his own son sees no differences between him and his own son who happens to be Azad's best friend. Azad The book is merely 240 pages long and a short read but it speaks tons. That's the mark of a good story, it does not need to speak much to have a powerful impact. The author knows her stuff and has done her fair share of research about the partition, as evident by the first chapter of the book. Speaking of the first chapter, it would have worked better if that would have been the prologue, and what actually was the prologue did not seem very important to me per se. The title of the book is The Cord. The cord of partition separated the nation and much more. It is a beautiful metaphor that you will realize as you read the book. I did mention that it's a short and beautiful story but it does have minute flaws. Like the ending was a little too fast, I felt. It could have been dragged I thought but that would also become a cliché thing to do so maybe I'm wrong. We all have read/watched several India-Pakistan books/movies. But this one is unique in its own way. It does feel like Veer Zaara at one point but not really. The book is technically brilliant too. I'm not sure but maybe the author has had help with a veteran while writing some parts of the book. That inspiration is evident. Overall a good read that will leave you thinking.


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