The times that we live in are ironic. While we look at relationships through a kaleidoscope of practicality, every single one of us is looking for that eternal bliss called ‘love’. While some find it tugged in the arms of their loved ones, I’ve always found it in about something that is more than 100 words and has a fine print!
Of late, I had a chance to lay my hands on a recent release by Hamid Baig – ‘Little Maryam’. When I read the Author’s note, the practical, sorted woman in me sighed ‘another love story?’. And yet, I gave it a go.
And I am glad that I did.
Little Maryam is a sweet amalgamation of everything one should expect in love; not necessarily something you should be expecting out of a lover.
Before I review it, let me give you a flavour of what the book is about.
Little Maryam tells the imagined tale of Dr. Saadiq Haider and his childhood sweetheart. While giving his acceptance speech for his Nobel Prize Nomination, he receives a phone call that changes his life. Abandoning his duties, he boards a flight to Delhi only to cross paths with an intrepid journalist – Anne Miller. Couple of drinks later, both of them are transported to the homeland of Haider and to the love of his life, Maryam. The love birds parted ways in the most unfathomable ways only to be brought together again by fate; twenty years later. Would they finally be together as Anne and you hope? Read the book to find out (It is available on Amazon and Flipkart).
With this off the table, let me put forth my opinion about the book.
I started the book with zero expectation; the millennial kids know better than to get their hopes up at the mention of the word ‘love’. A couple of pages in all of my being was screaming ‘Wait, what?’. Not because of the absurdness of the situations, rather the pace at which the things moved. That being said, I was happy that they did. Because the more I read, the more I wanted to know about the story of an underdog, who just wanted the simpler things in life. Know the story of the pompous, arrogant Doctor and who hurt him in ways that his cracks won’t heal with time or affection. Know the story of a woman who gave her all to the men in her life, only to be left alone in the end; picking up the leftovers. And what I got to know, shattered me and filled me with hope; all at once.
I won’t talk about what happens in the story. Nor would I question why. Merely because it encapsulates an idea of love that is so pure and giving that you have to be there to experience it. What I would talk about is the plot twist. For any seasoned reader, you’d know how things would end the minute you walk into the plot. However, complete credit to the author who still grips you with his words and makes you read till the very end.
The stage that is set by the author, at times, is a little hard to digest; however if we can gulp down Harry Potter without blinking an eyelid, one should try to look past those random moments of ‘how exactly is this feasible?’
In conclusion, Little Maryam is for every hopeless romantic soul who wishes upon a broken stars for one true love. Those who believe that love would ultimately find its way. Those who are open to expect and hold onto it in any form they can. This 285 pages long saga would surely make you sigh, hoping for a perfect ending.
I’m not a hopeless romantic. I don’t think I ever would be. But deep down, I rooted for Maryam and Saadiq from the word go. And I guess the author should take a bow for it.