एक बुक जर्नल: No Child's Play - Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

No Child's Play - Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay

Read on 24th of March 2019

Edition Details:
Format : Paperback
Page Count: 110
Publisher: Harper Perennial
ISBN: 9789350297018
Translator: Bhaskar Chattopadhyay
Original language : Bengali




First Sentence:
Baburam Ganguly was a brilliant student.

Baburam Ganguly had everything in his life - a good job, a great house and a beautiful wife. The only thing missing in their life was a child which they were failing to conceive. They had tried everything and had failed. This desire was so great in them that every other thing was feeling meaningless. And then the accident happened.

And, miraculously, nine months after the accident a child was born in the Ganguly family. They were ecstatic. But their happiness was short lived. The child Bonny, was different from other children. He was born with some disability but then things start happening which made them think that Bonny was not a regular kid. Apart from it the Ganguly's had reason to believe that some one was keeping eye on them. It seemed that some mysterious organisation was after Bonny.

Who was after the new born baby? What did they want from it? Was there really some one or the Ganguly's were being paranoid?

Gadai Babu was interested in science and so he began to build his own laboratory. But soon after this weird things started happening in his home. Things which had no explanations. Gadai tried to explain it with the help of science but he couldn't. Meanwhile, his family believed that the house was haunted.

Why were mysterious things happening in Gadai Babu's home? Was he able to explain those occurring? Was there really a ghost or was there some other explanation?

Dr Wong was one of the most brilliant scientists that the world had ever known. He was Chinese but he felt someone was after his life. So, Dr Wong had decided to leave China for good. But then something bad had happened. Someone had stolen his latest invention. That invention had been Doctor Wong's life's work and was so powerful that in bad hands that could create havoc all round the world.

Who was after Dr Wong's life? Who had stolen his invention? What was his invention? Was Dr Wong able to get it back?

How were there seemingly different lives connected? Were these people able to overcome their problems?

These and many more other questions would be answered when you'll read No Child's Play by Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay.
Major Characters:
Baburam Ganguly - An indian engineer that had moved to America
Pratibha Ganguly - Wife of Baburam
Margaret - Baburam's neighbour
Dr James Creel - A world famour neuro surgeon
Bonny - Baburam and Pratibha's child
Fred - A homeless guy
Eddie - Another homeless guy
Gadai Babu - A guy in bengal who had interest in science
Tomtom - Gadai Babu's son
Dr Wong - A world renowned scientist
Mike - Another homeless guy
Gajen - Gadai babu's cousin

No child's play is the English translation of Bengali novella called Bonny by Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay.  I was just browsing through Amazon when i came across this one. The thing that captured my interest was a blurb by Samit Basu that one should read it if one is a fan of  Feluda or tintin. I have enjoyed adventures of both of these characters so i had purchased it immediately. And now more that one year after purchasing it(i bought it on Feb 2018) i have finally read it and i must say i loved reading it.


No child's Play is  a fun sci-fi novella with evil mysterious organisations, robots that are capable of doing anything and a baby which seem to communicate by changing color of his eyes.

The writing is fast and the author doesn't waste time in setting up the story. The story starts to pick pace from first page only and after that one keeps reading to find out what's going to happen next. The book was written for children so there's a kind of simplicity in it.

The story revolves around Ganguly's of America, Gadai babu and his family in Bengal and a Chinese scientist called Dr Wong. These seemingly unconnected lives have a connection and the reader becomes acquainted with it as he keeps reading the story.

The characters seem real and complement the story. But as the story moves fast we don't get to see them develop that much. But in spite of that i  really liked Doctor Wong's character in the book. The way he tackles the problems that he encounters make for an entertaining read. I would really like to read a book about him only.In the end it's shown that he moves to Japan. That could be a fantastic setting for a new Doctor Wong's adventure.

There were few things in the story that i thought should have been addressed but were not. You may say that these were the things that i didn't like in the book.

The scientific aspect of the book is somewhat weak but then it was written for children and is meant to read for fun so i think it's okay. There were one or two things that were left unanswered. One was that why were the Ganguly's chosen for the experiment? This thing is never made clear. Was their accident part of a plan or was it that they were just available? If i have been in their shoes i would have asked this question. But even after they come face to face with the guy responsible for their plight they never ask it.

The other thing that perplexed me was that how was the thing that was stolen in Hong Kong came to be in a shop in Bengal. What had happened after it was stolen from Dr Wong? We are not given any answer to this question. We are just made to believe that some one stole such an important invention and then sent it to Bengal. This seems something that i have hard time wrapping my head around.

It would have been better if the above questions were answered.

In the end i would just say that if you are looking for a fun, fast paced light read then you would not go wrong with it. It may seem simple to you but then you should remember it is a children's book. I think i would have enjoyed it much more if i would have read it as a child. I would definitely recommend  that you should give it to your children. They would love it.

Rating: 3/5

If you have read this one, then do tell me what did you thought of it.

If you want you can get the book from the following link:
Paperback

Other translations that i have read:
Translations

2 comments:

  1. Seems good or I should say seems very Interesting after reading the review, I will definitely go for it and will let you know my views on this Novella.

    ReplyDelete

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