First published @ Online Book Club..!!!
Ratings: 2 out of 5 Stars.
Love is a powerful thing, especially love for the country. Robber’s Hill is a small village in India where the famous dacoits of Chambal reside. Dacoits were initially rebels against the upper class and upper middle classes, who fought for the freedom of India. The book, “The Robber’s Hill” by Ravi Ranjan Goswami is a fictional story of one such family of dacoits. A dacoit, Kailash Pandey, looted and kidnapped a marriage party commonly known as the ‘Barat’ in India. The story goes on about how he treats the people he has kidnapped and what happens in the end. Does he let them go? Will he keep his promise to deliver them safely? What goes on among the family of the people kidnapped?
The author has given a perfect and detailed description of the marriage ceremony and happenings in the Chambal region. He has defined every ritual of marriage as in a typical Indian marriage. The little details given by the author make this book an interesting read for someone who is interested to learn Indian culture and traditions. One such example is when, in the book, the bridegroom’s mother goes in front of her father-in-law to give him the ransom note, sent by the dacoits, she covers her head in saree paluu. This is an old practice by Indian women, where they cover their heads before going in front of an elder.
The story is not really fast paced, at the same time not too slow; it goes at a medium pace and stays the same throughout which makes it a little monotonous.
I think the author had a wonderful story line, which could have been used beautifully with lots of twists and turns. His characters are well drawn but lack a little touch of emotion. The book goes on in a matter-of-fact manner rather than a story and could use a little bit of emotions and drama.
The theme and situation which the author chose are quiet apt as looting and kidnapping in and around the Chambal region in India is common practice. This book is a good read for those who would like to know about Indian culture and few of its basic marriage traditions. Overall, it is a decent one time read.
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