This book has given a glimpse of what the people are Kashmir is going through. It is a novel however it gives a perspective of the life of people who are currently living in Indian Occupied Kashmir (The unresolved Dispute of partition). For the Wider world, this book has given a human face to the people who live in that territory. It outlines their emotions how they relate to incidents, how their life is entangled with the conflict. The conflict inside them and the normalization of a Conflict Zone. For Indians, it has given a human face to the people of Kashmir who are often regarded as ungrateful people. For Pakistanis, it has given a view about the effect of the uprising and events which have happened there. For the World, this is maybe the first book in English written by a native in English about the lives of Kashmiris. To me, it is more than mere emotions. To me it has highlighted prejudice on different sides. The thoughts of people when they wonder about if one thing is wrong on one side then how can it be right on the other side. I read the latter part of Page 32 a few times because it narrated how people get branded because of a thought. The writer told the story in a way which it was hard for me to stop reading. On average I read 100 pages in one day. It hooked me to the book. However, I would confess that I did lose a bit of interest in the second last part of the story. I will also confess that I used a Dictionary a few times too. Everyone in the Story was affected by the Kashmir Dispute. Emotional Scars were visible on every character, may it be the civil servant who is employed by Government, may it be a Police Officer, may it be a Kashmiri Pundit, may it be a disabled person, may it be a student. Not a single character was not affected. The story narration was such as I felt I was going through the emotions of people. I feel that without physically going to the Indian Occupied Kashmir I have seen it. It reminds us that the people who are living in the conflict zone have daily lives and have the desire for love and affection. Are sensitive to triggers which may seem to be normal to others.
As my maternal side is from Siri Nagar & Sopore I have a more than normal affiliation with that part of the world and consider the people my own. As I have met the author thrice and had a bit of conversation to be reading the book was as if the author was speaking to me. I think this book is a reminder to the world that Kashmir is not just a territory rather it is a Land that has inhabitants who have lived there for ages. Kashmir should be seen from the Eyes of the people who live there instead of the Lenses which we often wear. This book has increased my inner feeling to visit Siri Nagar and the Valley. It has given life to the enchanted land which I have listened about.
I would like to Thank the Author once again for giving a face to the people of Kashmir as they are real people, not just statistics.
Book Reviewer: Mohammad Ali Toosy is a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt Certified Professional who is also a Change Management Practitioner