Letters In The Rain is the tiniest and thinnest book I have ever read. This book is about unrequited love and true friendship. It is a college love story wherein we have Aman, the quintessential nerd who prefers digging his face into his books instead of looking up and talking to people. And we have Kiara who feels she is better off steering away from engineering books and finds solace in her music. Two different people, two different personalities and one single love story. Not a novel concept and a very typical setup. Is this book worth your time? Well, read on to know what I feel about this book.
Letters In The Rain by Anubhav Shrivastava and Ananya Roy
Publisher: Rumour Books India
Quite early in his life, Aman had been labelled a ‘weirdo’. His side-parted, oil soaked hair and gawky physique made him the butt of jokes among his peers. There is nothing spectacular in his life—he studies all day, has never had an interaction with a girl that lasted more than five minutes, and scribbles his inner musings into his best friend, a personal diary.
Deep down, however, the guilt of being considered a social killjoy by the society starts to have a negative impact on him.
When forced out of his solitary shell into the action-infused warehouse that is ‘college’, Aman’s life takes a drastic U-Turn. Owing to a Chemistry project, he is forced to partner up with Kiara—a cheerful, carefree soul who tucks away her dark, brooding past upon arriving in Manipal.
What follows is a series of awkward encounters and quirky adventures; ones that throw them in the deep end and make them face their worst fears.
(Book blurb as on back cover)
I LIKE Letters In The Rain Because,
…I loved the cover of the book. Please, don’t judge me when I say that I selected this book because of its interesting cover. I like how the two heads blend into one to give you two faces with different expressions. The colour combination of blue, white and black makes the book extremely alluring.
…the language is simple I could finish it in one sitting.
…I specifically liked a write-up on ‘Importance of Arts and Humanities in our Education System’. Now I am commerce student but when I completed my schooling I wanted to pursue arts stream. But my parents were of the perception that only students with less percentage pursue arts so I was compelled to take commerce despite my hatred for maths. In this book, Aman is asked to write a blog post on the importance of arts in our society and Aman does a fantastic job at explaining how arts has indeed helped multiple fields of work. For instance, Aman writes, “Mangalyaan cost a mere $74 million dollar while NASA’s expense was about $672 million. They did this not only by scientific knowledge but also creative thinking since they structured a less cumbersome orbit.” (Please ignore the redundant word ‘dollar’ in this sentence.) I wish every parent reads this write-up and understands that arts is not the last option for a student but rather a preference for the creatively inclined. Humph!
I Do NOT Like Letters In The Rain Because,
…of the inconsistency in writing. For instance, chapter 1 is slow-paced and the writing is very mediocre. But in chapter 2 the writing gets crisp and eloquent. I may be wrong in assuming that the two chapters are written by two different people but this is what I felt throughout the book. Some chapters would be written colloquially with several grammatical errors while some chapters felt like it was written by an experienced writer. The writing throughout the book is not dismal. It is good especially compared to a lot of romance novels available in the market. It is just that some chapters need a lot of fixes while some chapters are nearly flawless. A minor point that bothered me was that the narrator would address the character Venkatesh Kamath by his name while Aman and Kiara would call him by his surname. Since the book does not have many characters as I reader I was able to remember that Venkatesh and Kamath meant the same person. Had there been more characters in the book it would certainly have confused me.
…the story is very predictable and nothing is new about it. I do not mind reading clichéd romances but this one was too bland for my liking. Also, I could never connect with either of the main characters. Initially, I thought I could understand Aman. He a social-recluse and lacks emotional quotient which is why he has no friends and when Kiara is nice to him it is very natural for him to fall for her. But as the story progressed I felt no connection with him at all. At no point did I feel Aman’s pain at losing out on love. In fact, I never even saw him fall in love with Kiara. This is the writers’ shortcoming as I was never privy to Aman’s feelings for her. Just a few random lines about him stealing a glance at her lovely face did not convince me of his love. As a reader, I want to know more of what he feels for Kiara to be convinced of his heartbreak. When Aman suffers a heartbreak, his rose coloured glasses shatter and he performs badly in his exams. I literally rolled my eyes when Aman wrote about his poor academic performance following his ‘break-up’. I find it difficult to believe that a studious guy who aces all his exams scores less after being left heartbroken by a girl who is not even his girlfriend. I could not understand why he was so deeply impacted by the failure of his one-sided affair.
…I did not like the poems at all. Now this point can be too subjective as I am not a poem lover and cannot appreciate the beauty of poems. Though I do read poems occasionally only a few of them strike a chord with me. I tried reading the poems in this book but was majorly disappointed with it.
Quotes in Letters In The Rain
“Social Anxiety returned to grip Aman. Oh no, it seems you’re going to be the first speaker. Let’s see, what all mishaps could befall us now? You could trip over your chair and get branded as Klutz Lord for the rest of the year. Or, you could stutter and splutter and be known as the Stammering Solitarian of Section N. Know this, Aman, you’ll never truly get rid of me. It’s like confidence is iron, you’re anaemic. Self-control and you’re bulimic.”
“But why do we always question the positive? No one questions hatred. Everyone doubts love and warmth.”
“Maybe it’s not all about the destination. Maybe it’s not about the journey either, for sometimes terribly planned trips end up being the most memorable, albeit comically disastrous occasionally. Maybe just maybe, it’s about giving your best shot to every moment you are blessed with. About spreading love and sanctity in a world that’s constantly spewing hatred and churning out competition. This was it. After nineteen years of his existence, Aman had learnt to live for himself.”
“Society needs to stop treating arts and humanities like a lesser known cousin of science.”
Final View: If you like traditional and clichéd college love stories and are looking for a quick read then you will like Letters in the Rain. Also, if you enjoying reading poems conveying heartbreaks then do pick this book as Aman’s pieces of heart are joined together by his poems for the one girl he ever loved.
**This book is a free PR sample. The opinions in this review are honest and 108% unbiased.
You can check out Amazon.in for a discount on this book.