I got a book review request from the author. Thanks Mr. Manish for providing me a review copy in exchange of an honest review.
The Bicycle Thief: And Other Short Stories
The books is a collection of 14 Short Stories. All of them have a twist in the tale – some are predictable; some are not.
#1 The Bicycle thief
This is a story of Anamika Narayan – a working woman who learns the meaning of life thanks to her stolen bicycle. I like how the importance of social media has highlighted in the story.
#2 Spot the Leopard
This is a story of Shashibala – a stern sub-inspector who is expected to rid a small town of a prowling leopard. I like the portrayal of rural areas around Nagpur and the slight bitterness with which the village-or-town dilemma is described.
#3 Pinky Pinkie Ponky
This is a story of Vishwasrao – a man who is willing to get his little finger chopped off in order to win his lady love. The story described the card game and the real game they played at the table with Pinky and pinkie as stakes.
#4 Who Killed Vidyasagar?
This is a story of Vidyasagar – a man who wakes up to read his own obituary in the newspaper. This story is the perfect portrayal of how ‘government’ and ‘official’ things work in general in India.
#5 The Long Dash
This is story of a self-proclaimed ‘the best copywriter’ – a man who needs to retire, but in style. The end was predictable but nicely written.
#6 No Rhyme, No Reason
This is story of a traumatised man Gautam Mirdha who is intent on ending his life, thanks to his adulterous wife.
#7 The Lottery Ticket
This story is about an honest taxi driver who comes to return a wallet he finds in his taxi. I like how the wife of the wallet owner tries to use the situation for her benefit, by trying to get the publicity.
#8 The master Pickpocket
This story is about two pickpocket who can’t forget their art.
#9 The Sagittarius girl
This story is about a woman who doesn’t believe in horoscope but doesn’t stop reading her horoscope, either.
#10 Never See, Ever Again
This story is about a not-so-happily married couple. A pamphlet has a strange advertisement that makes the wife call up and place an order, for getting one lakh rupee as free gift.
#11 Many Happy Returns
This story is about a man who has a mobile showroom, and wanted to celebrate his 50th birthday in style, by giving discount offer to those who shared his birthday.
#12 Dollar the Dog
This story is about a guy who kidnaps a dog for ransom.
#13 A hundred words
As the name suggests, this is a hundred word story, or a paragraph.
While all short stories were good, #7 qualifies for the ‘best story’ because the end was totally unexpected.
I enjoyed reading the book. It is a good and quick read.
3.5 / 5.