Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Review: Pitfalls & Parachutes by Durgesh Shastri

Anthology has been in a constant demand this season. Readers have enjoyed a variety in one single book. The genre freedom in anthology has made it for the readers to enjoy all of it at one place. Author Durgesh Shastri in his book "Pitfalls and Parachutes" has penned down an anthology from his own experiences. So will the variety offered in the book suit the taste of the readers? Let's find out.  

Pitfalls and Parachutes is a collection of fifteen short stories. The stories are youthful and lively. Entertainment is at the core of each of the stories. Watch out for exciting endings. A glimpse of the collection: 1. The protagonist's decision to help a lost lady might cost him his job. 2. Television news becomes a reality in the life of Cyrus. 3. Pramanik's reputation is at an all-time low. Someone can make it worse. 4. Can anything other than ragging make one's first day of college hell? 5. Why does an anonymous donation trouble Kanha so much that he hires goons to hurt an old man? 6. Deepak decides to overcome his superstitions; will they leave him so easily? 7. Michael sets out to fulfill his wife's last wish. What's his last wish? 8. Can a kick change somebody's life? 9. Does Sumit land a job in spite of a disastrous interview? No recommendation is entertained. 10. Kanchan has to choose between her lover and husband. Her son holds a dark secret. 11. Rishi has vowed never to fly kites again. What if he breaks it? 12. Valentine's Day and fanatics ultimatum. Will love Blossom?

First look at the title and the cover and a reader won't be able to make out the exact theme of the book. The title is justified as the book progresses on. The cover image is apt to go with the title but it's relevance with the book will be revealed slowly and steadily. The blurb highlights about anthology as the theme of the book and a brief one line description of all the stories. The blurb could have been summarized generally rather than giving one liners about the story. The suspense could have been maintained for the readers. 

There are 15 short stories covering the day to day life, incidents around us and numerous situations and circumstances which can compel a person to think, to react and to stand up for it in their own way. Each story has something or the other to offer to a reader in terms of experience. 

Story No. 1: 

It's a simple twisted story of two people who are together by fate and end up in a dramatic mix up. It's a good story considering the fact that it has a bit of spice in it for the readers. 

Story No. 2: 

Reality being shown on any electronic medium acts as an eye opener for the society most of the times. It's just that somebody has to take the first step. This is what this story is all about. It's an average story with the main catch towards the end. 

Story No. 3: 

When things spiral out of control in a person's life it becomes way too difficult to get it back on track. This is what the story is all about. It's a nice story with a touch of surprise in it. 

Story No. 4: 

This is a story about college life and it's implications and the first hand experiences when it concerns lecturers. It could have been a better story. It's one of the weak links of the book. 

Story No. 5: 

It's a story of beliefs, religion and spiritual connection of a man with a god. The story has an essence of purity in it. It's a wonderful story with quite a surprise for the readers in store. 

Story No. 6: 

The story is about blind superstitions and how people get spoil their lives by following them regularly. It's a funny story and with an abrupt and a happy end to it. 

Story No. 7: 

Some things are just not meant to happen in one's life. This is what the story is all about. It's the wishes and desires which are left incomplete. It's an amazing story with the right mix of emotions in it. 

Story No. 8: 

One should not be stubborn in life at times and listen to the elders too. Some advises work as tonic and a cure for the rest of your life. It's a good story of realization and the feeling of helplessness at the end of it. 

Story No. 9: 

It's the story of frustration and unwanted attention and few assumptions which leads to numerous other outcomes. It's a funny and an unexpected story and keeps the readers engaged. 

Story No. 10: 

One truth can change the lives of many. Destiny sometimes takes a course which is not in anybody's hands. It's a marvelous story with a touch of deceit, happiness, anger and shock and realization. 

Story No. 11: 

Some vows from the past are never meant to be broken. It's the story of staunch determination of a person and then the results of breaking it. It's an average story with not much to excite while reading it. 

Story No. 12:

When it comes to a girl's respect the man who stood up for it is the one who deserves her completely. This is what the story is all about. The story has a moral and a message in it for the society which makes it interesting. 

Story No. 13: 

It's a vivid imagination of the future and when resources will be limited then how would humans adjust to it. The story is a mix of present scenario in the future giving few insights as to what to expect in the coming time. It's not one of those exciting ones in the book. 

Story No. 14: 

It's a story with a lot of unanswered queries at the end. It has twist in it, love and something shocking which will baffle the readers a lot. It can make an intelligent one look silly. It's one of the best stories of the lot. 

Story No. 15: 

The arrogant always take a mighty fall and this is what happens in this story. It's a story of revenge and dignity of a person. It's a very good story considering the narration and the way it has been penned down. 

The stories which I liked the most are story no. 5, 7 ,9, 10, 14 and 15. The weak links of the book are story no. 2,4, 6 and 13. The anthology is a good attempt at observing the day to day happenings around us. Flavor of life is an added charm in the book. 

The book is a decent attempt at penning down an anthology for the readers. It has been balanced out well for the readers to enjoy but few of them might not click with the readers too. It's unraveling various human emotions in different circumstances under one book. 


3 OUT OF 5. 


  1. Hi Meghant, Thank you for a diligently worded review. I liked the meticulously crafted sentences which describe the stories. Of course as an author I do like all the stories:). It was interesting to know which ones appeal to the readers most. You have been very professional in your work and congrats for that.

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