Of Choices and a Modern Indian Romance


How do I choose a book? An interesting book blurb is the first criteria and a curious title the other. I also spend time looking at and analysing the book cover. I chose Fade to White by Shreya Dhanwanthary because of the existential question it posed. When I mulled on the title it lead to many connotations – is it about fading into oblivion or the morose eventuality of being wrapped in a shroud. The book cover was more of a mystery. The soft black net against a white background could signify the black of widowhood. I started this book thinking it was about loss closely related to death. In a way it was but not entirely.

Interestingly, a Google search for the metaphor of Fade to White brings up links related to a cinematographic technique.  “When a film ends with the more traditional fade to black, there tends to be a sense of closure. On the other hand, ending with the much less common fade to white seems to create a sense of ambiguity.” – http://thecreatorsproject.vice.com/. The concept is closely related to life and death. How does this interplay with this book was an interesting quest for me as I started this book.


Fade to White is a book of loss but not of death. It’s a modern Indian romance with multi-faceted characters faced by choices, some of them confounding, difficult. The story starts by introducing the modern Indian young woman – educated, free, bubbling with life and energy, a writer by profession on a journey to Turkey. I had this feeling that the author specifically wanted to document her trip to Turkey. Not surprising, since Indians have opened to the challenges and virtues of travel across the seas and reading and writing about travelling experiences is quite a highlight of modern literature.

Some pages into the book, I was waiting for the protagonist to reveal her name. However, this book brings forth an interesting rendition, wherein the names of the three primary characters are not revealed. Half-way-through the book, the two men are given pseudonyms but that is about it. While the writing style is interesting, it demands concentrated reading. With only pronouns to identify characters, the reader has to concentrate on the story line and character-development. This might come across as an exhausting experience to some readers.

Apart from the writer, the other two main characters are an engineer and a consultant. One of them is the writer’s best-friend, the other a partner; who’s who can be tad confusing unless you are really concentrating on the interplay of events. The storyline is one we have read, heard, seen often – there is nothing new there – how the story is told is the key highlight of this book. The same events are related from the perspective of all three, adding to the book volume. Some of the flashback moments are poignant and stay with you. The struggles, happiness, misery of childhood are sensitively portrayed. Relationship and perspectives on matrimony are deeply discussed.

Traversing between the present and flashbacks, the author distinctly draws up backgrounds and influences in the lives of the characters. Without a name, the characters don’t have a class, religion, caste, or race, but their past lives document their economic and familial backgrounds. In their present lives the three e characters are typical modern, urban-chic adults. In fact, if you are not a modern, urban-chic adult many of the references and nuances on this book will be lost on you. From this perspective this book is catering to a niche audience – contemporary, well-read, well-travelled and with ample knowledge of new age cinema. A large-part of the book is dedicated to ramblings and debates related to these trappings of our cosmopolitan existence.

A clichéd storyline is what didn’t work for me; an interesting rendition and good lingual appeal kept me going. Peppered with sarcasm, humor, sadness, and most importantly, the humanness of each character, this book offers life lessons and is an inspiring tale. How the story will eventually relate to the book title and cover page, continued to be my quest.  The answer was revealed in the last page of the book. It was different from what I had calculated. What does Fade to White signify – read Shreya Dhanwanthary’s exposition. Buy Fade to White on Amazon.

Source :- http://felinemusings.com/2016/07/09/of-choices-and-a-modern-indian-romance/

Fade to White – Shreya Dhanwanthary

I love how just like the name of the book the cover is also fading to white on the page. This book was definitely a differently told as compared to other stories. This book was provided to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review, so here goes:
This is the story of three people, we have our un-named Heroine and her un-named Boyfriend and her un-named Best Friend. We find out more about all the characters one by one and we find out what makes them tick. The story unfolds slowly and we never know original names of our characters so it’s like from the start our main characters want to disappear in the void, like the title but of course the title doesn’t mean to disappear it means ‘To find the perfect moment’.
We go through the light moments in the present and then the life story of all three characters one by one and then when we think that everything is good and all set, the tragedy strikes and we find ourselves covered in misery and sadness along with the characters on the pages. But as they discover that there’s light after darkness and hope after dispair we also find happiness at the end of a sad tale.
This is also not a tale of simple people and simple lives it’s a story of world changers and people who study in prestigious colleges and work in wonderful dream worthy places and still find the inspiration to move even further in life.
I love the fact that even Indian authors are now moving away from the beaten path of smaller novels and although this is little bit similar it’s different enough to warrant praise in that department. Although it does get a little slower in the start and the middle and I also had little difficulty with the innovative idea of not divulging names throughout the books, most we get are nicknames.
You want an opinion? Do yourself a favor and do read this book, this is worth giving a shot and Shreya is talented enough to be given a chance to write more and more.
Source :- http://www.keeponreading.in/2016/06/FadeToWhite.html

Fade to White Book Review

Fade to White by Shreya Dhanwanthary is a story that gives hope even to those who no longer believe in the feelings or, even less, for a second chance and is one of those books that, when it ends, you cannot immediately replace it with another that will make you change your mind and making you understand that, often, we say the word “fine” when, out there, a world is waiting.

This is a story of three individuals who are trying to find out who shapes the past, present and the future, whose existence, as they recognize it, shatters subsequent to a distressing episode and endeavour to come across a fresh start with an opening away from their obscurity.

The truth appears to the eyes but has to be discovered with the heart and is right there when none of us thought it was, in the surrounding world with all its simple element. In fact, if we pause a moment to reflect on this distracted and chaotic life, we understand that everything done and lived has not brought us here at this very moment. Here we discover that there is a thread, a sense that each of us is brought to live.

Through her sweet narrative the author wants to tell us what is for her the sense of this world, to the discovery of wisdom that contain the whole truth, purity and immensity. So we enter in a story that takes us back to nature, to silence, to true love, the essence of things that are in the simplicity that surrounds us and we can all draw.

The characters are described to perfection who are not simple, with three completely different characters who has great depth with emotions only to those who are able to really let yourself get involved who has a number of secrets that will make you want to continue.

The story is very smooth, and certainly knows how to lure you to the reading and it will be impossible to take your eyes off a fluid and flowing narrative as each chapter always has something that will force you to continue with concise number of pages that makes it a suitable book for those who want to read without necessarily having to cope with volumes of endless stories. Not surprisingly, the story takes place in an instant, to be read with a good cup of tea or a glass of wine.

The structure of the novel is based on transference that bounce from one character to another and, in the narrative, the characters perfects their own path to free their psychic energy of all obstacles in a strong and deeply psychiatric novel but at the same time marked by the peculiar rhythm of the authors’ pen.

With a style that captures the story in mid-air allowing it to reach the maximum of emotions, the narrative is psychological and deep, with meaningful relationship that cements the characters and events of the story. The author has the ability to give a feeling of watching the story as if it were filtered by moderately loose-knit cotton texture of the cloth.

In this book there is life with the story of a immense journey through the thousand trips and the thousand other stories that it has crossed that gives us the opportunity to wander in the incredible life of the characters and to grasp, through it, an innumerable multitude of meanings.

In conclusion, the great message that the author leaves us includes all together an inner revolution, which help us to see the world through our eyes.

Format: Paperback ♥ Publisher: Leadstart ♥ Pages: 268 ♥ Published: April 2016 ♥ Language: English ♥ ISBN-13: 978-9352015856

Source :- http://bookmarkks.blogspot.in/2016/05/fade-to-white-book-review-shreya.html