Saturday, 5 July 2014

The Helpline by Uday Mane: A Review

Title: The Helpline
Author:  Uday Mane
Publisher: Leadstart Publishing
Page Count: 252

The back cover says: Samir is suicidal. Rachael works for a suicidal helpline. Fate connects them through a phone call. And so begins Samir’s story of love, longing, error, 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 us 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.

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

On the name and the cover:
After completing the whole book when I think over the name the first word that escapes my mouth is perfect, it can't be better because the whole story unfolds around the call to The Helpline.
The cover complements the name and the content perfectly. The way the cover is designed keeping the content in mind is appreciable. The red back cover and white front cover along with the blood completes the look.

On the narrating style:
After reading a few pages I forgot that this is a work of a debut writer who belongs from a non-writing background. A delightful way of using direct narrative style. No unnecessary usage of phrases or unpronounceable words makes the book more gripping. Few editing errors are spotted but that can easily be ignored. The simple yet efficient storytelling skill of the author, makes this story more demanding.

On the storyline:
The book starts with the main protagonist Samir visualising scenes in the state of a trauma. As the story moves on and Samir calls the suicidal helpline the story starts to grip the mind of the readers. The way of introducing his characters is so good, that any reader can easily make a sketch in their mind. I have seen poems or songs inside a novel but this story have few wonderfully written short stories which gives the book a new height. As the book heads towards the end and the protagonist completes his part of narrating, the story starts to give a strong message. I got goose bumps while reading the end. Kudos to the author for framing such a captivating story.

+ Point: The gripping narrating style and the wonderfully framed plot.

- Point: Few editing errors, which can easily be ignored if compared with the flow.

Final words:
The Helpline
is one of the few books which will leave a lasting effect even after closing the book. Anyone searching for a quality fiction, go grab this one.


A+ (Excellent)     A (Very Good)      B+ (Good)      B (Average)     C (Below Average)