Title: A Thousand Dreams Within Me Softly Burn
Author: Sahil Sood
Publisher: Woven Word Publishers
Price: Rs. 200
Book Blurb: Siddharth, a middle-aged school teacher, struggling with an unfinished manuscript, leads a solitary existence in a remote village in Shimla. Gautam, a twenty-two-year-old writer, burning with a desperate longing for romance, finds solace in Siddharth's old essay on Thumri and spends years in search of him. Phil, a young Jewish traveller from Missouri, beset by a difficult alliance with his Christian girlfriend in the face of orthodoxy, travels around the world and meets Siddharth at a café in Manali. The answer to their longings resides in Siddharth's letters and manuscript--the silent witnesses of the fate of two men and their love for each other. A Thousand Dreams Within Me Softly Burn explores the depths of love and the power of writing that helps the human soul triumph over loneliness, alienation, and shame.
We all desire love. Be it the rich the poor, the king or the pauper, the ambitious or the content, at some stage in our lives the desire manifests and then begins to grow, eventually overpowering us to find that one person who would love us unconditionally, faithfully and forever. But alas! humans are faulty and such love is only a thing to wish for, something very few get. With evolution of technology, the next person available on the next swipe and sex no longer a taboo this love is almost non-existent. Fidelity now is a thing of the past. Yet what is heart if not an uncontrolled beat we hope to tame, it has desires, of soul and flesh, often wishful, expectant from others, only to be broken. This book in short is all about the above, the longing, the search, the imperfections and at some rare places the perfection whose existence is not realized.
You might think, this is another book on love, but no matter how much is written on the subject it still doesn't explain it all. Perhaps the writer thought of writing his own perceptions through the stories he read, through his characters. The book begins emphatically with a letter and then an essay. This essay is the most beautiful amalgamation on relationships, books and movies, I have ever read. It was as if the essence of some of my favorite books could come out so clearly in just a few of its paragraphs and sometimes only a single line. For a voracious reader it is a treat.
It is a book that might have different impression on each reader who reads it. The characters, their lives and stories all try to philosophically map relationships of love, as if trying hard to understand and define them. It is not a road going from one destination to another but a journey each one of us must take.
An unbelievable feat by a debutante, its almost poetry to my senses. A highly recommended read.