What is this life? Why do we do what we don’t even want to do? Are we compelled by the fear of social stigma? Are we led by the family pressure when selecting our career choices? There are many vital questions which are raised in a quality novel by Kartik Sharma & Ravi Nirmal Sharma, The Quest of the Sparrows. With the major plot around a swami, spiritual leader, Partibhan, the novel carefully examines these questions implicitly and tries to forward answers. Therefore, we can safely say that The Quest of the Sparrows, despite being written in this age of quick-fix fictions, is a novel which offers quality content mixed with an emotional ride to the different aspects of life.
Partibhan, initially, wasn’t a guru to be; he was, rather, a guru forced to be. He wrestled with his desires and freedom; he fought with his wanton ideas; he tried and tried things again and again; he calmed down; he came close to being a perfect messenger… and there he was – the Guru Partibhan who realised that spirituality or the divine isn’t something to be dodged or inherited; it has to come by itself and one has to accept it with all the will and enthusiasm. The Quest of the Sparrows, what we felt, offers the readers a kind of mental hustle within everyone who tries to act ‘like’ something or someone.
There are many examples in the book which offer the right allusions and metaphors, perfectly matching to the progress of the narrative. A sudden hesitation showed by Pathan while doing what he was paid for; the surrendering of a robber troop; the change in the mind of a private detective; the sense of freedom felt by two brothers… many examples are there in the novel which are used wisely by the authors to convey their ideas wonderfully. For sure, we liked the narrative and the language flow by the authors Ravi & Kartik! It isn’t too open nor its too implicit. It’s where it had to be for a novel of this kind.
There is a scene in the novel where Partibhan with his followers (on the 600 km foot expedition) meets a person (perhaps an Aghori in civil attire). And the exchanges made there between Nikhil & that person are worthy to be cited:
“Spirituality grows from being still, not [an] unnecessary movement.”
“We can see God easily without having to do all this. I know a shortcut.”
And even more:
“Women were responsible for the decline of mankind’s moral values. Manu Rishi had said that animals and women are fit to be beaten.”
“While I don’t agree with what’s controversial in Manu Smriti and outrightly reject those foul verses which seem to denounce women and suggesting us on marriage, I truly appreciate the verses which glorify women in truest possible words. 9.89, 9.130, and many others along with the mostly quoted one – 3.56. What the ‘pseudo-intellectual’ in the book implies is the condition of all those foul-mouthed people in the society who claim to have read so much of Dharma. That’s a pungent attack on those thekedars of dharma who are ready to slander someone just because someone ‘supposedly said so’ in a book! Truly amazing by the author!”
This was the exact words which came out when Alok Mishra along with the team was having a discussion on the book’s merit. Moreover, the ‘shortcut’ to God is truly misleading! No God would be happy seeing innocent animals being tortured to death to make someone happy! With respect to Tantra and the good practices, the author has very smoothly attacked the hypocrisy in our society.
Guys, this book – The Quest of the Sparrows, is a serious one and more you should know only when you read it. We have enjoyed the book thoroughly and highly recommend this to all of you who want to read some serious fiction, putting aside for a while the teenagers’ fiction.
[rating itemreviewed=”The Quest of the Sparrows” rating=”5″ reviewer=”TeamBR_online” dtreviewed=”25-04-2017″ best=”5 ” worst=”1″]A must read book for all book lovers! The novel comes with something genuine in plot, narrative as well as concept. [/rating]