The first thing that you notice about the book is the beautifully designed cover by Arati Devasher, and the length, 190 pages in all. You would think such a compact novel would be a breezy read, but this post-modern haze of a novel has more than meets the eye. Barua says that the book is about the rootlessness of the post-Facebook generation. Krantik, the protagonist, stands for the present confused generation and lives in Rome. The novel opens on a sombre note with his fiancee’s attempted suicide; although things hardly get any better from there. Krantik’s frustration with his humdrum job at a multinational company, his acute loneliness, his ranting, his fear of death and his fleeting relationships are all leave you with a vague feeling of unease, because you recognise that it is not very far from lived reality. Of course, it is a difficult novel to make sense of—the stream-of-consciousness technique is stretched to its limit—you almost cannot pause to breath, it’s like a whirlwind that sucks you in. Today, every little detail of our lives is being recorded; there are no more private thoughts. No Direction Rome captures this very essence, albeit in its own twisted, inimitable style.
Author: Kaushik Barua || Publisher: Harper Collins
Review by Nasreen Habib