Author- Arti Honrao
‘Is This Love & Autumn-The Last Leaf’ are two exquisite tales compiled in a single book.Both the stories are tuned to relationships.Where one story dances on the beats of selfless love ;other holds the epitome that how far love can drag one and can make one do anything.
As the synopsis of ‘Is This Love’ goes- IS THIS LOVE opens with a respect for friendship that Vishaal and Sheetal share. They live together and conduct themselves as being rational, mutually
understanding and admiring friends.Even though both share the same roof,they are nowhere near to being lovers.At least not until Sheetal starts dating Aman and Vishaal starts missing her.Sheetal’s absence gives Vishaal a lot of time to ponder over his feelings towards her. Having convinced himself over his love for Sheetal, he decides to help her with her marriage to Aman; after all,what matters the most is who Sheetal loves to be with.Sheetal is a smart, independent, and outspoken woman. She has no qualms
about her friendship and living-in arrangement with Vishaal, and does not attempt to hide or justify this friendship to anyone. Workplace romance was inevitable between Sheetal and Aman.She has his photo beside the bed so that she could go to sleep looking at his smile.But… did she really love Aman? Aman is very much in love with Sheetal, but loathes the thought of her friendship with Vishaal. Yet, he stands by his ladylove when his parents confront her over Vishaal and her relationship. He marries Sheetal much against the wishes of his parents. Marriage was not a bed of roses for Sheetal. Her visit to catch up with Vishaal starts infuriating Aman.Aman’s parents were not of much support either, reflecting contempt at every gesture. One day, Aman’s simmering skepticism erupts as blows.Deeply hurt both on the inside and on the outside, she turns to Vishaal for solace, yearning for Aman in herheart. The doorbell rings on an unsuspecting afternoon. But, is it Aman at the door?Or did his intentions take shape? What provoked Aman to manhandle Sheetal on that fateful day? The events that follow, takes us through the course of love, lifeand trust amongst the three.
‘Is This Love’ is a simpatico love tale ,where it gives us the message to take decisions from heart not to allow brain to act in between.Relationships are made from heart not from mind,when our brain starts interfering in between we may lose our most precious relationships’.I like the way how author gave this message in such a short and simple tale.
As the synopsis of ‘Autumn:The Last Leaf’ goes-
AUTUMN – THE LAST LEAF starts on a scary note over a dream which Neha calls a premonition. She sees that her friend Cathy is in danger and sends Kedar over to Cathy’s place in an effort to avert this oncoming danger. But the inevitable has already occurred.Devastated over the recent happenings,Kedar nurses Neha back to normalcy.During times of delirium, and the dream or vision that followed, Neha starts observing the change in her approach towards Kedar. During the brief time while both spent time away from each other at their respective hometown, Neha becomes convinced about her love towards Kedar and decides to surprise him by confessing her love in person.Little did she know that fate had already planned a surprise for her. Kedar, accompanied by his wife Samiksha, greets Neha at the airport. Shattered and angry over the turn of events, Neha still decides to face the situation head-on. To her surprise, she finds Samiksha a charming hostess and a great partner for Kedar. Yet, she continues to ponder over the dream she once had during those delirious days, while Kedar nursed her. She decides to play tooth fairy, and offers financial assistance to Kedar over his “Dream Project”. It so seems that Neha is always followed by “dreams” in every walk of her life. She just can’t shake them off.Another “dream” shakes Neha out of a deep slumber. She sees Samiksha being murdered and the maid walking away with the diamond necklace that Neha had once gifted. Fortunately, or unfortunately, she is not able to identify the murderer in her dream. In spite of Neha’s best interests, Samiksha falls prey to destiny’s events. As providence would have it, now it is Neha’s turn to return the favour. She gives her heart and soul to salvage the pieces of Kedar’s personal and professional life.Kedar seems to have hit an abyss with Samiksha’s death. All the care and concern that Neha is giving him was beginning to look like a waste. Totally devastated over her unsuccessful attempts to bring Kedar out of mourning, she decides to let her emotions and lust rule over intellect.Was she able to get back the same Kedar she once fell in love with? What is bothering Kedar that he is so desperately trying to forget? Does Neha’s dream hold the key to all these unanswered events?
The second book by the author has more impressing narration than the first one. In last chapter of ‘Autumn-The Last Leaf’ ,author has very cleverly illustrates the story of Neha in a poetic form.The title chosen for this story is apt and says all in depth.From these two stories,I liked the first one more, though the second one holds it own position.
Author’s pen has power to bring life to short story.I think ,to write short stories is completely a difficult task as compared to write a full length novel.As, in full length novel one has given all the freedom to extent it and to give light on small things. Whereas in novella or short stories one has to keep in mind at what extent the story has to be extended,how the readers would be able to imagine in short description.But author knows how to do this job with ease and she expressed it beautifully.
Arti Honrao’s books’ speak more of true and silent love. Her stories very well described exemplar’s feelings.She knows well how to portray the story in a equi -proportioned way.Her stories will always left you with a different feeling.
Reviewed by Shweta Kesari