Jobless Clueless Reckless

May 31, 2013, 06:13 IST | Vinitha Ramchandani

How do you write a book review when all you want to do is pull out chunks of the book that you've relished and put it on display?

For instance here one bit: Page 36 ‘What’s rape Ma?’ Ditto pipes up.

Revathi Suresh, DuckBill (young adults), Rs 175. Available at leading bookstores.

I suck my breath and stare at the Enlightened One in amazement. There I was trying to light a small flame under the chula and he comes in with this stick of dynamite. Like Calvin says, it’s all about asking the right question. I sit back and wait for the explosion….

‘Ok, at least tell me what virgin is?’ Ditto again! Oh boy I love this guy. I unofficially take back every mean thing I’ve ever said or thought about him.

Jobless Clueless Reckless makes you want to cry and laugh. Cry because these are tears of joy that finally India has a young adult fiction writer with an original voice. Laugh because the flow, the ease with which the author writes, Kavya’s voice in the story, the humor, the observations… every little detail in the book is a delight.

Kavya and her brother Dhrittiman live with their mother and are home schooled by their US-returned aunt. Kavy stays in Bangalore, is south Indian and is like any other urban teen. Kavya’s mother flits in and out of the book and the lives of her children and their father appears towards the end.

Board exams loom, peer pressures mount, boys are making eyes and Kavy is not sure about many things. The book is up-to-date with everything that today’s young adults are wrangling, in a voice that they will recognise. Pick it up. It’s brilliant, right up to its near-happy ending.

- Revathi Suresh, DuckBill (young adults), Rs 175. Available at leading bookstores. 

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