They say that often the book cover makes a big difference in influencing a reader to buy a book. I loved the cover of, “Ambling Indian Diaries: Journey India” by Aina Rao. It showed you at a glance what the book could be about. The colors, the contrasts and the chaos that characterize life in our country, irrespective of who you are and where you live.
Aina Rao, the author, has impeccable qualifications being a graduate of prestigious institutions like the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi and the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore. She, I would suggest, speaks for the youth of the country. Her writing style is contemporary and she makes liberal use of what has come to be called Hinglish. In this, as you might know, we have a smattering of Hindi words thrown in. She has used this for greater effect.
The book is not one story but rather a collection of episodes involving the author who is a media person, a journalist and TV reporter at different stages of the book. The book (published in 2016) captures modern day India, especially life in the big cities, and is made up of the author’s observations of life around her. It seeks to show events and happenings from the point of view of the common man or woman. I particularly enjoyed the tongue in cheek humor which springs up from time to time.
The reader who is unfamiliar with India will enjoy getting a bird’s eye view of life in a typical Indian city in this day and age. For those of us familiar with life here, it is a gentle reminder of the many things that have gone wrong and could have been better. Yet, it reflects on the process made over the decades and how we have changed with the time, perhaps because we simply had to!
I enjoyed the book and look forward to more from Aina Rao.