#FRAGMENTS has delved into the mind and the evil within. Men as well as women and finding space for women who make their own way around the limitations of the world. It is a short story collection by Janaki Nagaraj and each one has something different to say. A few stand out with the crisp endings and deep message that Janaki conveys effortlessly. I am sure that she is working on the next book and hope to read much more of her work.
The book starts simply with RITUAL, a story that explores the impact of our relations and the emotional toll they take. HOMECOMING brought a lump to my throat, it deals with PTSD and painted a realistic picture of the soldiers and prisoners of war.
THE LAST LAUGH was left me guessing that who was fooling whom and was their actually a victim? Love was strange indeed in this story. NAKED was a very symbolic story, so relevant to our times today. Another fresh take on love. I liked how the author expressed the need for a relationship. QUID PRO QUO simply teaches the value of money and how inadequate it can be for life. A sensible lesson in values. Our work is integral to our lives and the two intertwine in CLOSE CALL. Ambition ensures that living dangerously or too smart is easily done – read to find out how.
This story speaks of our most crucial parenting challenges faced today. IF YOU CAN’T UNDERSTAND MY SILENCE articulates the importance of paying attention to our children, more to their silence or non-verbal actions as the title suggests. While on a different aspect of life, THE ESCAPE TO HELL has Maada and Kaala who are trying to escape but from where? This story was quite spooky!
STREE and SEXY BODY, BIG BOOBS are two stories about women and their struggles. Women find a strong presence in her book and she has woven good stories about them. Another women oriented story but with a different take on what a woman faces, even in marriage. THE OTHER WOMEN IN MY LIFE tells about a strong and liberated Minnu, married for 30 years and the various women she comes across via her husband during her marriage and what she does.
There are two more stories WHAT GOES AROUND and I DON’T WANNA BE AN ADULT making it a well-rounded collection of stories. Fragments, makes you take a pause, think, wondering where are we heading. Positives are there in the stories, in our lives and people but the negativity is threatening takeover our humanity.
Fragments – a collection of stories, tells us to find the goodness around us, the kindness around us and make an effort to make a difference.
“I often painted fragments of things because it seemed to make my statement as well as or better than the whole could” – Georgia O’Keeffe.
A serial killer on the loose who chooses a particular day of the month to kill his victims; a strained father-son relationship, when the father returns home after being presumed dead; a girl who can go to any extent for her career and money; a woman openly acknowledging the presence of the many ‘other women’ in her life; a lady’s dark past finally catches up with her… Life is an ongoing sequence of events meshed with everyday mundaneness so that it becomes difficult to isolate them.
‘Fragments’ captures the essence of those parts of our lives that we are not proud to show to others. It takes you through a range of emotions and leaves a big question mark on what is supposed to be.