Author : Srinath Krisnamoorthy
Roger Ebert wrote in his review of the South Korean film Oldboy: ‘It is a powerful film not because of what it depicts, but because of the depths of human heart which it strips bare.’ Hope We Never Meet Again is powerful because of the same. It daringly uncovers the deep secrets locked within the depths of the human heart, as only a few novels have done before.
It tells the story of Varun Diwakar, a techie lost in the city of dreams, Banglore. His love life, his revenge life, his magical life, his psychological life and his life form fodder for the action of the novel. Love, lust, passion, romance, guilt, greed, anger, fear, surprise, hate, thrill…and the rainbow of human emotions, you feel it all as you enter the mind of the protagonist. The other characters in the novel are also powerfully drawn. The author sees to that the readers empathises with each and every character. They are not stereotypes that emerge in commercial films, they are unique and dynamic.
The chapterisation is unique. Each chapter presents a different point of view. This breaks free from traditional unity of the plot. Instead of presenting a single story, multiple narratives are used to enrich the story telling. Those in favour of hyper-linked plotlines would love this novel. Yet, everything is strangely connected.
The theme of crime is an often visited genre. Book stalls are swamping with detective novels. But, this novel takes this theme to a different realm. The ‘ghost effect’ is done decently. The novel keeps us guessing towards the end. The suspense at the end is well done. The magic and psychology of the plot thrills.
The milieu of the novel is well painted. The ethnic beauty of south Indian villages form a foil to the vanity of the cities. People from Kerala will love this book for its cultural richness and linguistic expressions.
The novel takes a bold stand that other works do not dare to take. It satirises and celebrates life at the same time. It goes into deeper questions about the meaning of life and gives answers better than any commercial ‘self-help’ book. It is emotionally arresting. It offers a ride filled with strong feelings, a ride worth taking.