Friday, October 9, 2009

Book review: Freedom at midnight

For the past 2 weeks i was engrossed in reading freedom at midnight. Before going to lab, during lunchtime, after work i would be lost, immersed in reading it. If you love to read historical masterpiece you ought to get your hands on this book. The story written marvolously by Larry Collins and Dominique Lapierre is a heart tugging story about the fight for freedom by indian nationalist. It is written from several viewpoints, from the Indian viceroy L. Mountbatten who is obliged to let india go, the unforgetable Mahatma Gandhi, congress leaders, Nehru and Patel, and finally the plotters of gandhi's assasination. The book is unputdownable and captivates and holds your attention from the start till the end. It starts with the meeting of British prime minister, Atlee with L. Mountbatten. Mountbatten reluctanly comes to India to start independence talks. With hurdles in every way he turns, from the stuborn Mahatma who refuses to partition India , to the tough negotiator Jinna and equally tough congress leaders,he single handedly manages to achieve common ground for independence talks. The colourful and tragic story unfailingly captures the turmoil of the people of all level of society and interestingly the maharaj and princes of India. The book touches on every aspect on Indian life, the geography, lifestyle, the caste system, the varied religion and the tension beneath the surface. The most touching part of the story is the painful struggle that gandhi goes through to make his people live in unity irrespective of religion and caste.  The frail 77 year old gandhi walks everywhere, cleans up after himself and practically lives a very simple live with minimal wastage of material. He quotes every now and then ' bread taken without labour is stolen bread'. The plot thickens when assasination plans get underway and with heart thudding i turned each page dreading for the tragic climax of the story. When i finally finished it, i had a sensation of stepping back into present time. The book is closed for the moment but i would definitly re-read it as it is absolutely fulfilling in every sense.

1 comment:

  1. Short, sweet and to the point. Well put. I have just put in a review on this subject... so was interested in looking at other viewpoints as well. My blog can be found at