Friday, September 30, 2016

Book Review: Her Resurrection by Soumyadeep Koley

“Her Resurrection” is a contemporary Indian women centered dark social fiction penned by Soumyadeep Koley and published by Gargi Publishers. The book narrates the different life-phases of an Indian lady. It also gives an insight of the undercurrent situation of lower-middle class Indian women and their struggles which is often polished by the dazzling glamour of showbiz oriented society.

The book is dedicated to Jyoti Singh [Nirbhaya/Damini] and gratification has been paid to all the violence survivors. It is really unfortunate to mention that the book touches the reality of majority of victimized women in India.

About the Author:

Quite contrary to the trend of popular Indian fictions, the author of this book had a clear motive to pen the story. Given the profile of Soumyadeep Koley, the book does justice to the subject chosen.

Soumyadeep Koley is a writer, poet, women’s rights activist and photographer. After graduating with Honours degree in Chemistry from Scottish Church College, Kolkata, he joined the global fight against violence on women. He has worked with Jason Jayology Jeremias, the Founder and Artistic Director of Price of Silence, New York, which employs performing arts to bring the global struggle for women’s rights to life. Soumyadeep Koley has three years of experience in psychological counseling of domestic violence and rape survivors from India and abroad, through unique mystical and metaphysical techniques.

Plot Structure:

The book has a proper plot structure including prologue, epilogue and main book. The story revolves around Maya Singh and her struggles along the hardship of her life.  Given her surroundings, Maya seems to be an extraordinary child who reasons with life even after being contradicted by her father and society continuously. Maya just doesn’t give up when things do not go her way. She suffers loss of family, loss of social recognition, loss of studies and job. And as if all these were not enough, she survives gang-rape. But her extraordinary will helps her to overcome the trauma of prostitution which she is forced into. Her sufferings do not end even after her escape from prostitution. She is cheated in love and fate snatches her unborn child. Still, Maya, like a phoenix, rises from the ashes of her dreams and stands for herself becoming a role model for such women who believe that crises bring a dead end in life.

Plot of the story is well versed and well-researched. The plot only justifies author’s profile again. The different sequences, description of the circumstances, the protagonist’s journey shown via different phases of society prove to be very apt for the storyline. Right from the start, the author holds the grip of the script and never leaves even a single loose end. There are no fillers in the book and every scene seems quite apt.

Narration and Dialogues:

The book starts with first person narration and soon shifts to third person narration. The Prologue and Epilogue are in first person narration. The main book is in third person narration. The conversation of the Prologue which leads to the main book is referred simultaneously and few dialogues have been inserted in the main book. The main book happens to be a story narrated by one of the characters of the Prologue.

This form of book-writing is very trendy in contemporary Indian popular fiction. Picking up the popular style of narration grows interest and curiosity among the readers. It is really the prowess of the author to tell a serious tale in a light style. Author relies on simple and day-to-day conversation and dialogues. None of the dialogue sequences seem to be imposed upon the mind of the readers forcing them to appreciate the author’s verbal intellect. The author carefully maintains the thin line of grace and even in the grave scenes and succeeds in being methodical instead of glamorizing the pain and tragedy. Soumyadeep Koley deserves a round of applause for maintaining this equilibrium since it is the toughest part of tragedy writing to persuade the reader to empathize with the characters without showcasing their pain. Research and relevant experience in the field could be the reason behind author’s intellectual balance.


Soumyadeep Koley’s “Maya Singh” deserves to be one of the memorable heroine’s of tragic fiction. At several instances, Soumyadeep’s Maya reminded me of Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre". However, 'Jane" was dearer to destiny than ‘Maya’. Luckily, she never went through the trauma which engulfed Maya all throughout her life. Her courage, her innocence, her attitude, her morals are just the reflection of a common Indian girl. Soumyadeep Koley has been very labourious and yet very careful in sketching her. He has been elaborate yet very protective while creating Maya. Maya seems more like a sculpture of the author’s mind than just being the heroine of a book. She is inspirational and she is adorable.

Since Maya is the protagonist of the book, all other characters do not get as much attention as her. Maya’s mother proves to be a doting woman who supports her daughter in whatever way she can. The antagonists of the book appear strongly and impress the reader hatefully in the small roles they are assigned. Maya’s love interest ‘Siddharth” becomes lucky enough to get much more attention than them. Siddharth is probably another remarkable character of the book. He is a common Indian man. There is nothing special about him and that is what makes him extraordinary. In a lot of ways, he represents the backward mentality of majority of Indian men who are indefinite, stubborn, like lots of adventure in life and yet make sure to play everything safe. At times, I wondered, why a strong woman like Maya fell for him in the first place.

Soumyadeep Koley has been reasonable in characterization also. His characters are eloquent without being loud which is equally appreciative. This eloquence of his characters makes even the minor-most characters like Saadia, Audra and Sucharita memorable.

But there is one such character who suffers the injustice of the author and that is Damien. The character of Damien had too much scope and versatility but the author chooses to give him a restricted frame for reasons better known to him. Otherwise, Damien would also have been a memorable character.

Treatment of Love and Romance:

Normally, a social tragedy leaves very little room for romance but Soumyadeep Koley managed to grab few scenes of romance from the love track of Maya and Siddharth. However, the nature of the script makes this romance one-sided and readers are acquainted only with the female feelings. Maya falls head over heels in love with Siddharth and her feelings get surreal description from the author.

However, I personally feel that the love story of Siddharth and Maya was bit exaggerated. Such a long sequence wasn’t required. This length could have been used for Maya and Damien. But it was cut short by the author. Perhaps, that is why the tragedy of Damien fails to stir the emotions of readers.

Overall, this book is an honest attempt by the author and he seems quite successful in his motive.

My Rating: 4/5


No comments :

Post a Comment