Nov 9, 2009

I shall not hear the nightingale

BOOK REVIEW I shall not hear the nightingle
Authored by- Khushwant Singh
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I shall not hear the nightingale' is the story about love, pride, passion, religion, culture and all the things that represent indianness. It is set in the pre-war conditions in 1942-43, when the British government was thinking to free India, from its 1000 years old rule.
The story starts with Sher Singh and his revolutionary friends, preparing themselves to start a war against British rule in their province. On the other hand, his father Buta Singh was one of the megistrate; and has inborne loyalty towards British government and people. The story moves on with this entirely different thinking pattern of father and son, each busy to attain their own pride in their group of people.
On the other hand, Madan a family friend of Sher Singh was involved in his drama with Champak and Bina, wife and sister of Sher Singh.
The turning point of the story was when Sher Singh was caught by police in his revolutionary activities, and was faced with a dilemma to save him and his father's hard earned reputation, or to save his revolutionary friends.
Sabhrai, mother of Sher Singh was a godly figure in the story, always involved in religious practice, and I think that makes her the most powerful character in the story; for it was this Sabhrai, that brought the good ending to the story.
Khushwant Singh, in this novel has proved that he is truly an Indian, with his description of Indian culture, religion practices, superstitious of a common man, and most important life of indian men and women.
But talking about the story, I feel that he didn't provide the satisfying ending to the parallel drama of Madan and the two girls.
On the whole, story was good, and I didn't regret reading this book, but one thing I regret is choosing this book as my 75th book; and I must say that this was not one of the finest works of Khushwant SIngh, and probably it has got no stand against his other novel 'Train to Pakistan'.
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