24 November 2021 | By: Writing Buddha

The Three Khans: And the Emergence of New India by Kaveree Bamzai (Book Review: 3.25*/5) !!!

1983rd BLOG POST

37th Book of 2021

 


Well, just 2 days back, I completed my target of 36 books set for the year 2021. I thought that I won’t be able to move beyond the target due to the psychological slowdown that happens once we achieve a set target. Hence, I picked up a book named “The Three Khans and the emergence of new India” written by Kaveree Bamzai. It’s based upon our favorite three superstars who have ruled Bollywood for almost around 2.5 decades – Aamir Khan, Salman Khan and Shahrukh Khan. For someone like me who is 1989-born, my whole childhood has been about being fan of either one of these three actors as we keep on changing our interests in our growing year. Haha! But particularly, I was a big fan of Salman Khan hence every time I get a chance to read about him or the other two Khans, I just pounce upon it. Hence, I chose this book to go beyond my target.

 

Before this book, I have read almost a similar book written by Sanjukta Nandy named “KHANTASTIC: The untold story of Bollywood’s trio” which speaks about the lives and careers of the trio Khans. Another book which is completely based on Salman Khan named “Being Salman” written by Jasim Khan is something for which I travelled 4 hours up and down just to get it on time from the hands of the author directly. Hence, while reading this one, I had expectations of reaching the hidden layer of the personalities which has not been discussed yet in magazines, articles, books and other contents accessed by me. This 230-pages book is surely interesting as it keeps your curiosity alive throughout and you wish to know what happens next in the careers of the three Khans.

 

Author manages to talk about all three of them giving them the same space in the book though there’s little less about Aamir as he’s mostly a private person hence one doesn’t know much about him. Kaveree covers about how they initiated their careers in different ways without knowing each other and gradually, their path intersects and brings all of them on the same track to be competing for all their lives post that. We get to know the kind of struggle they have to go through in terms of their ambitions, roles, personal issues etc. yet their spirit to keep the spark alive within them of performing incessantly. You get to know how deep they used to think even at the start of their career as in one of the instances in the book, both Aamir and Shahrukh accepts that they got successful initially not because they were great actors but just because they were new faces.

 

Author then gets into the space which made the three personalities vulnerable and disheartened due to events that impacted their career or personal lives such as – the kind of investments SRK made for Ra.One as he had huge hope from the movie and what its debacle did to him in terms of confidence and motivation – Similarly, for Aamir Khan, how his divorce affected him and made him take support of alcohol to keep himself sane – for Salman Khan, as all of us know, his broken relationship with Aishwarya and several other events of his life kept knocking him down which made him take unwanted actions which damaged his reputation like anything. Author also talks about the disagreement and a bit of anger both Salman and Aamir had towards their father for bringing in other ladies in their life apart from their mother. I didn’t know about this part at all.

 

Along with talking about the Three Khans and their whole filmography until the recent lockdown era, author talks about various other issues that Bollywood has been dealing with – such as the debate on nepotism, Insider vs Outsider, comparison of actors with yesteryears’ legends, Me Too movement, die-hard competition etc. Bamzai keeps on letting us know about what happened with India parallelly in terms of politics and other issues. She also acknowledges few incidents when each of the Three Khans spoke about something that led them towards controversy. But she has also missed many important events such as SRK’s Wankhede ban, Salman’s involvement with Modi etc. Reading about references of Arjun Rampal’s NCB enquiry and Aamir-Kiran’s beautiful relationship in the book, I was just thinking if author could have waited for little longer, she could have covered Aryan Khan’s case as well as Aamir-Kiran divorce too. The book ends with talking about the new era of Bollywood where multiple actors are becoming popular with the different kind of work/art that is getting created and delivered to us. I just loved reading this whole section as it is so contemporary that I could relate with it.

 

Now talking about the drawbacks about the book- I must say that yes, the book is surely interesting for people who love the three Khans because it just makes you happy to keep reading and knowing about them continuously for hours. But the issue is the kind of hatred that authoress has regularly shown towards Hinduism as religion, Hindus as people and BJP as presently elected government favouring Hindus. She also goes beyond this and tells how people support Hrithik, Akshay, Ajay, Ranbir, Ranveer just because they are Hindus. As far as I know, meeting and discussing about movies and actors with so many people, I have never heard anyone preferring or hating the three Khans for their religion. This is just the garbage filled in the minds of people who think like this – unfortunately, the author here too seems to be from the same section of society.

 

Even on the last page, there’s a reference of criticism towards the current government. Author has regularly emphasised on this point that since the new government has come into the picture, the dynamics have changed for the Muslims and how it has become difficult for the Three Khans to survive. I don’t know in which parallel universe is this happening. Also, I feel that very important part from the three actors’ life has been excluded conveniently which doesn’t give the right picture on their career statistics as well as personal lives. There are many typos in the book – majorly in the 2nd half of the book – it seems that Kaveree tried to complete it on a deadline which couldn’t allow herself, editors and publisher do a final proofing.

 

Overall, I believe along with talking about Khans, this book is also trying to brainwash us towards thinking about Bollywood and cinemas from a religious and political perspective which I believe is truly unwanted. If that part could have been excluded, this book could have served better information on the actors and Bollywood but currently, it’s more about propaganda and agenda against the current Government particularly. I give this book 3.25 stars out of 5.


PURCHASE THE BOOK HERE

 

Thanks.

 

WRITING BUDDHA 



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