Author– Manoj V Jain
Book– Meeting Yama
From the moment we are born, we start our journey towards death. Some walk slowly, others run towards it, some skip and dance their way there, while others crawl.
In his seventh book, author Manoj Jain dwells on the uncomfortable topic of death. Interspersed with stories from Indian mythology, Meeting Yama is set in the mystical city of Varanasi where all answers are given if one is willing to listen.
Amrit, Rajat and Surya, three visitors meet each other in this city and find resolutions to the issues that they carry within them.
If you are reading this, then there is probably something in the book that is meant for you.
Meeting Yama by Manoj V Jain, is an account of three men, being mysteriously drawn to Varanasi and their quest for the unknown.
Amrit, Rajat, and Surya have very different lives and different woes.
Amrit has had to see his only family slowly drift away from him. His desperate attempts to make life easier for his mother had not stopped the curse of time. A part of him stays wondering whether his mother knew he was thankful for her.
Rajat, a doctor who lacks empathy and sees everything through the lens of science. For him, it’s all black or white. The city he visits on friendly advice teaches him the grey in human lives. He feels the significance of his family, more than their worldly tags of wife, mother, and father.
Suraj, a travel company co-owner, and his crippling marriage. He sees a deity calling to him in his dreams and searches all travel destinations in the hope of finding it. The city, Varanasi, though fills him with certain ideas, it also enlightens him on a certain loss that haunted his family. Above all, Suraj finds the hope that had left him, years ago.
Also Read- Review Pen: Past Dwellers by Samridh Seth
The character Amrit is a homosexual. There has been a rising demand for LGBTQ rights in India. This little step, of making a character in his book, part of the rainbow community, shows how the author is not ignorant and wishes to spread awareness. The gesture is extremely thoughtful.
One of the remarkable things the reader witnesses is Rajat’s change in perception. I wouldn’t have believed that people change in a day. Their minds do not broaden, they don’t start accepting different things, all of a sudden. But it usually takes the right situation to resonate with our thoughts. We feel ready to accommodate more, after that. The same happens with Rajat.
The book is very helpful in understanding the concept of death. Though a necessity for life to flourish, it’s not easy to explain death and its significance to every. This book tries to simplify it and has slipped the gist of it to the readers, between those stories. I had suggested this book to a high-schooler, who was rather distressed about the death of someone close. The book did the work, it really helped the person accept the loss.
The language is simple, hence the book can be read by young people who wish to understand death.
I did expect the book to be different than what it was. I would admit, my expectations weren’t high, but I liked the concept.
Ratings- 3.5 stars out of 5
This book is not exactly for seasoned readers. If the reader has been through books that provide a deeper meaning of life, the book doesn’t provide anything more. It might disappoint mature readers, so the audience becomes limited to amateur ones.
Reviewed by- Banaja Prakashini
Buy the book-