Book Review – The Helpline

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DETAILS
Title : The Helpline
Author : Uday Mane
Publishers : Frog Books (An imprint of Leadstart Publishing Pvt. Ltd.)
Genre : Fiction

THE AUTHOR

Uday

Born in Pune and brought up in Mumbai, Uday Mane is a social media marketer during the day and a story-teller at night. An avid reader, Uday Mane loves collecting classics. The Helpline is his debut novel.

Uday Mane blogs at The Allegorist . He is also on twitter @ The_Allegorist

THE BOOK

The cover is simple and lacks colour. This very aspect along with the picture, gives us an insight into the plot within.

The Helpline

Blurb of the book

Samir is suicidal. Rachael works for a suicide helpline. Fate connects them through a phone call. And so begins Samir’s story of love, longing, errors, regret and a girl who changed his life.

As his story reaches its conclusion, Rachael will know the true reason behind his suicidal tendencies. But this suicide helpline is not any ordinary service. There is more to the mysterious and yet so convincing voice of Rachael. As this new mystery begins to unfold, Samir is going to discover three things :

What is The Helpline?
Who is Rachael?
What is Samir’s own identity?

Every year several teenagers in India attempt suicide because of failing relationships, dwindling careers, parent pressure or the competitive world.

This story is about one such teenager, his early problems and the hurdles to cope with them. This story is about finding hope in the early struggle. This story is about fighting for what you believe in and discovering your true identity. This is not a story about falling in love. This is a story of rising from a failed love story.

WHAT I FELT ABOUT THE BOOK?

HIGHS

Story-line – Interesting, intriguing and one you can relate to. This is not just the story of Samir the protagonist, who shows suicidal tendency on account of his inability to cope up with a guilt but is also the story of a sister who’s world revolves around her one and only brother a victim of Down’s Syndrome. The Helpline also introduces us to a true friend in the form of Neha. Her worries, her concern for the protagonist are something that endears her to the readers.

But is there anything as failed love here? Well I wouldn’t use the expression ‘failed love’ for the simple reason that the choice of parting ways was a conscious decision made by the protagonist himself. Instead I would say this is a story of rising from the trauma of a disaster that gave rise to guilt.

The suspense surrounding the reason for Samir’s depression, his suicidal tendency, Rachael and her helpline are all maintained well till the very end. No hints, no clues are dropped anywhere in between. And this is exactly what engages the reader.

Language – Simple and lucid. The narrative flows freely.

Characters – The characters are well etched with all their virtues as well as flaws. Each character contributes to the flow of the story.

Message – The story conveys a strong message to both parents and those suffering from depression/ suicidal tendency. 1) For parents – Don’t force your dreams on your child. It can boomerang. 2) For those suffering from depression/ suicidal tendency – Suicide is not the only way out of your problems. We dream. Some dreams come true, others fail. Accept it and move on. When you are low speak to a dear one. It helps.

LOWS

The beginning few pages seemed to drag, but then from the 4th Chapter onward the story gained momentum keeping me hooked till the end. The editing is wanting in a few places.

MY RATING/ RECOMMENDATION

Looking for a light read. Then, this is definitely one you can place your hands on. The story touched my heart. I give this 4/5.

WINDING UP

Some quotes, some thoughts from the book that I must share here.

Page 106 – “A smile is motivation enough to keep us going.”

Page 128 – “Failure is a part of life. Don’t be afraid of it. Embrace it. Face it. Don’t be ashamed of it. You must learn to overcome your fears and build up on your strengths. ………..”

Page 139 –“Seldom do people get multiple choices.”

Page 201- “Relation is a thin thread held by two souls at each end. It takes just a scissor of misunderstanding to cut this thread.You may be very compatible for each other, but if you cannot compromise, then it is only a matter of time that things start falling apart……”

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I thank the author Uday Mane and Ms.Nimi Vashi who blogs at The Readers Cosmos, for being kind enough to send me a review copy of the book in exchange for an unbiased review. This book review is a part of ‘The Readers Cosmos Book Review Programme.’
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In service of the child

“Proceedings of Rs. 5 per book will be used for child welfare through The Rotary Foundation

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The Helpline

BUYING LINKS

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infibeamcrossword

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Please leave your footprints in the form of comments and suggestions. Your words mean a lot to me.

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4 responses »

  1. The quotes seem lovely and the message is pretty good 🙂 I might pick up the book sometime 🙂 My reading list is getting lengthy day by day 😀

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  2. seems quite inspirational actually based on the lines u quoted.. I liked your style of reviewing the book, dividing it into many things that matter. What about book quality (paper, font) – that is one more thing that I usually look for nowadays and I feel a few of the new publishers are cutting corners around.

    Like

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