Friday, 3 July 2015

Book Review- Panther


Book:  Panther

Author: Chhimi Tenduf- La
PublisherHarperCollins Publishers
Price: 223 INR

A fresh and promising new voice on the literary landscape - The New Indian Express, I see you. Legs like toothpicks, body and face all ribs and cheekbones. And that hair. Come on, what is it? Like friggin' barbed wire. I see you with a hand me down cracked bat creaming a leather ball, in a sock, hanging from the branch of a mango tree. Being accepted into an elite international school on a cricket scholarship doesn't mean your life is going to change. Except it does, because hunky Indika - I for Indika, I for Incredible - takes you under his wing, drags you to posh restaurants and shows you pictures from glossy magazines of women who? well, never mind, that's not the point. The point is - if your best friend snogs your girlfriend, can he still be Incredible? Was he ever? But don't sweat the small stuff. There are cricket matches to win, examinations to pass, a horrifying past to forget, a sinister schoolmaster to avoid and of course, a first kiss to finally experience. Prabu's life is never going to be the same again. Funny, diamond sharp and unapologetic, Panther is a novel about that familiar, fractured passage to adulthood that can make us magnificent if it does not kill us.
About the Author

Chhimi Tenduf-La
, Half Tibetan, half English, Chhimi Tenduf-La has lived in Sri Lanka, on and off, for thirty years. Educated at Eton and Durham, he runs an international school in Colombo, teaches economics and provides university counselling. He has written plays and fiction for local publications. His first book, The Amazing Racist, was published in 2015.

My Review

Panther is the story of a young protagonist named Prabhu , who is abandoned by his parents at a very early age and left to fend for himself in an inhospitable environment. The story is set against the background of a country striven by years of civil war between the Tamilians and the Sinhalese ethnic groups in Srilanka. The war has taken a toll on everyone, resulting in loss of near and dear ones , loss of innocence and acceptance of violence as a part of life.

Prabhu is able to survive in this rugged terrain amongst harsh characters due to the combat training he received in warfare from early days which made him a tough character. However, he is soft   natured which prevents him from adopting an aggressive and violent demeanour despite being goaded by his fellow combatants.   His natural talent in cricket helps him to make a mark and gain recognition in a society which otherwise scorns at people from his community. It also helps in getting admission is a prestigious school and a taste of the lifestyles of the upper strata of society.  The game of cricket helps him to find a friend in Indika, another good fellow cricketer. Their partnership helped in winning the national junior cricket team trophy.

The narrator alternates between the present and the past. However, the book very well manages to balance the present and the past. One of the interesting narrating style adopted by the author is narrating the story at times in second person which makes the reader intrigued and inquisitive about the identity of the narrator which is revealed only in the end. It helps in creating interesting equations between the numerous characters portrayed by the author including the female protagonist.
The author successfully portrays his characters as down to earth personalities.   
The book would be appealing to all the categories of readers. It helps in transporting the reader to Srilankan environment.
 My Rating for the book- 4/5
 The Book is available on Flipkart


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