Book Title – Bhumi
Author – Tina Sequeira
Publisher – Amazon E Book
Price – ₹ 49 for the E-book and ₹0/- on kindle unlimited
Available on – Amazon.
Pages – 108 pages, Language – English
Recently finished reading the book ‘Bhumi’ by Tina Sequeira. It is a collection of women-centric short stories. Tina dreams of writing novels and thinks of this as her baby step towards that goal. Well, if these are her baby steps, then she is on the right path and we are in for a treat.
Tina is the winner of Rashtriya Gaurav Award in association with the Government of Telangana for ‘Author of the Year’ (2019) amongst numerous other awards. Her stories and poems have been published in many anthologies. Bhumi is her second book.
The best part about the book is that all the characters are inspired from real life. Oh! They have their trials and tribulations, but they are no victims. No, they are out there fighting and standing up for themselves instead of cribbing and blaming their fate, the system or the society. All her characters are relatable. You may come across them in your daily lives; some you may notice and others you may have totally ignored or even shied away from.
All the stories have been narrated well and kept me hooked till the end. With a span of five to ten minutes needed to read them, they were the perfect way for me to start my day as I read them while I sipped my coffee. That gave me the whole day to enjoy them, mull over the message and marvel at the resilience of her characters. All sixteen stories are good, but here are the three that will stay with me for a long, long time.
Fat Chance – This is Ira’s story and how she deals with body shaming. This is a fantastic story. I loved the perspective of how a fat girl who is ridiculed by the society, friends and colleagues deals with it. How she resigns from her job and gets on Tinder and adopts a totally unconventional path to a journey of self-discovery. I have to admire the author here for her beautiful and fluid narration and insights. Here are a two of my favorite lines from the story –
- For the longest time, people’s stares at the gym hurt her more than all her body aches combined.
- That’s when it hit Ira. Everyone is body-shamed, not just her. She found Jitin’s remark regressive. It wasn’t just about fat or skinny bitches anymore. It was about people’s inability to look beyond the body.
Pound of Flesh – This is such a thought-provoking story. All those people out there who love to criticize other religions, their way of life and their customs and societal beliefs should read this story. The writer has so beautifully through her protagonist Dinaz, highlighted the differences between two religions and how Dinaz after introspection comes to realize that what seems is not always so. Here the writer needs to be commended for some really bold statements that many may not be able to put in writing.
Switch – This is perhaps the most relevant story in today’s time. Especially as young girls are fed a steady diet of the ‘stereotypical’ notions of romance, love, looks, the right place of a girl as a lover, as a bride and as a wife. It seems the more progress we make towards being independent entities the more this world wants to portray us in typical sexed-up or decked-up roles. Kudos to the writer for showing the progress and changing thought process through a mother-daughter story without being preachy. My favorite lines from the story –
- And I’m a step ahead of Amma. I made the switch when I overcame the Cinderella Complex to be my hero and find happiness from within.
- I would never get nagged with an ‘I told you so!’ every time I didn’t listen to her and goofed up. I choked with grief, gratitude, and guilt all the lost opportunities and chances.
So, if you are in the mood to read something that is thought provoking, peppered with beautiful insights and sprinkled with a good dose of humor, do give this book a read.