Reading any book, these days, is a different ball-game, because of the numerous genres that have sprung up. And yes, there are romance novels flourishing which thankfully can be easily ready by men too. And amidst all this walking on the thin line comes the romance novel In Pursuit of the Woman by Rajbir Gill who happens to be an ex-helicopter pilot from the Indian Navy. This is his debut novel and considering his background, it is quite an unusual topic.
Writer: Rajbir Gill
Publishers: Author’s Empire Publications
Price: Rs 150
Released: November 2013
Set in Goa and Delhi in 2000, the story revolves around naval pilot Dev and young collegian Suman. Their romance is in the time when love via social networking or new-age technology was minimal and love had to survive the real world than the virtual. Posted at the Naval Air Base in Panaji, Goa, Dev Kapoor is the quintessential dashing officer from Delhi – good-looking, sensitive, staunch on his word, funny and romantic. And he receives a letter from an old friend which reveals that his sister is coming to Goa and it would be great if Dev could show her around. It also states that she has seen Dev at a family gathering and is very interested in marrying him. Even the respective families are perfectly okay with this marital bond. Intrigued, he meets Suman who is astonished at the authority later given to her by her brother to meet Dev. To cut the long story short, the two-three day meet culminate into the couple falling in love so badly that they agree on an informal marriage which will be kept secret till certain things are sorted out. But they are in for bigger shocks and a threat looms darkly on their marriage. Scared and in emotional turmoil, Dev goes to Delhi to sort things out. A meet with his father about things results in a truth from a past, a fight for his love and a heart attack suffered by his father. Will Dev and Suman be able to save their families and love?
One of the remarkable things is that the book, in no way, tells you it has been written by a man. It might sound prejudiced or even have woman’s organisation running the review down for the statement. But when suffering from reading romantic novels written by women, both the sexes assume that romance writing and women go together. The story does not take time to start and from the moment Dev meets Suman, every line and situation takes the romance on a higher note. The whole mood seems to be heavily borrowed from the typical romantic film. It is good because it reads like a film, though the initial romance shown can be too much to handle. The whole story has been recreated on the typical line where the couple profess their undying love to each other, get ‘married’, Dev realising the mistake, his fight with his father which results in the father getting a heart attack, how they sort out the trouble and the ‘kahaani main twist’ which comes at the end. But the character building is done very neatly. The language is simple, but nothing great. But we give it to Rajbir Gill for recreating the defence angle perfectly. The bad side is that the filmy romance angle might not be everybody’s cup of tea.
In Pursuit of the Woman by Rajbir Gill is a decent read, provided you do not mind the overflow of romance. At best, it might be a good option compared to the silly novels which masquerade as romance pulp fiction.