Book: Janardhan Talbot (part 1)
Author: Mohan Timmaraju
Reviewed by: Ashish Pandey
Rating: 3.8/5 stars
I have read almost 16 novels this year, 2019, until now. This one, Janardhan Talbot, was finished this week on Thursday. The author of this novel, Mohan Timmaraju, comes from a family of freedom fighters and it is but natural that his inclination towards a theme such as the first freedom struggle of 1957 will come reflecting in his literary fiction. Janardhan Talbot is a novel that describes the state of mind of an Indian youth who has tall ambitions to visit England and live an aristocratic life. To an extent, he even succeeds in doing so. However, something keeps tormenting him from within. A guilty conscious? A betrayal?
The novel begins in a splendid third-person narrative that betrays the fact that Mohan Timmaraju, the novelist, is just writing his debut work. Readers are introduced to a bright, well-built and sophisticated in manners young man Janardhan Rao who has to flee his hometown in the wake of a fatal brawl with some Englishmen. However, one British in the life of Janardhan is constant and friendly for sometimes – Jonathan Talbot. Yes, you might be guessing right; Janardhan Rao and Jonathan Talbot are two different individuals but somehow, after something happens in due course of the novel, Janardhan assumes the identity of Jonathan Talbot and begins his tour of the different countries and continents, on a British boat!
If you read the novel with a detachment and ignore the happenings to focus only on the abstract, you will feel that the protagonist, Janardhan, goes through several phases of self-discovery with something that is constantly the outcome – he has a home somewhere; he has a beloved somewhere; he has to reach somewhere. The first part of the novel, apart from occasional romantic encounters that commemorate Janardhan of his purposes, is all about this abstract that drives the plot. Janardhan meets several people on his journey to reach England. He remembers most of them but only with a heavy heart and the novel ends with Janardhan waiting to be docked in London.
I liked the overall attempt by Mohan Timmaraju. Though he is old enough, he has still managed to capture the youthful emotions wonderfully. On the other hand, he has managed to keep his novel, even with a lengthy read, interesting and communicating. As a reader, anyone will like the journey of Janardhan. The language has been standard and classy to a great extent. The plot is not very revealing and it keeps the readers in a constant want for more. The theme is all about a youth’s ambitions in an India that were enslaved by the British.
Ideal readers of this novel will be readers above 20 and with a taste for the literary fiction. It might not be entertaining as a work by Chetan but certainly much more than that, if we consider the standard of a novel as the holistic benchmark! You can get a copy of this novel from Amazon by visiting the link below:
Ashish Pandey for Egoistic Readers
- Egoistic Readers' Rating
A must-read for the readers of literary fiction… something meaningful and embellished with the abstracts of a complete fiction…