Sunday, June 19, 2016

Urban Shots: Bright Lights - Paritosh Uttam (Editor)

Urban Shots: Bright Lights is a collection of stories written by various Indian bloggers and writers like Ahmed Faiyaz, R. Chandrasekar, and Malathi Jaikumar. 
The collection contains a total of 29 stories contributed by 21 authors. 
It has been edited by Paritosh Uttam, a popular writer himself. 
The stories  at once delightful, intense and disturbing, each narrated with an honesty of voice that peels off the layers of contemporary India to reveal colorful and thought-provoking glimpses of the intriguing labyrinth that forms urban India.
The highlights of the stories are the myriad interesting characters that they present - young, old, happy, talkative, infatuated, insecure, secretive, rebellious, and submissive. 
A seven-year-old girl who wishes to get married, a ten-year-old one stalked by painful memories of her mother’s death, a gabby filmmaker-turned-cab-driver, a nosy neighborhood lady, an unsuccessful salesman, a besotted 27-year-old, an ill-tempered retiree, a submissive wife who has suffered enough, a struggling artist, a grumpy literature-loving teacher - the collection features numerous characters, the likes of which readers are sure to have encountered in their own lives at some point of time.
For example in the humorous 'Maami Menace', Sathyavati racks her brains to escape an overbearing elderly lady; the charming 'Good Morning Nikhil' follows a baby's antics around the house; and in the curiously touching 'Hot Masala', Mr Kamath hatches a wicked plan to show his family better days. 
Through narratives that are happy, sad, dreamy, bitter, funny, and magical, the stories cover the entire spectrum of human emotions. From romance to suspense and from drama to comedy, the collection offers a little bit of everything that makes contemporary urban India the colorful complexity that it is.
Filled with compassion, wisdom and gentle humour, the stories in this anthology are as much about urban India as they are about the flawed people who inhabit it.
[Book Description Source:  and] 
Goodreads Rating - 3.19 out of 5 (58 Ratings; 6 Reviews)
My Rating 3 out of 5
My Comments: By and large a decent collection of short stories especially considering the fact that most of them are penned by part-time or first-time authors. Quite a realistic depiction of urban Indian life in these stories. 
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