17 July 2023 | By: Writing Buddha

Summer Holidays by Koral Dasgupta (Book Review: 4*/5) !!!

2079th BLOG POST

26th Book of 2023


After letting the pages of this book turn yellow, I finally picked up Koral Dasgupta’s “Summer Holidays” after four years. This is the first time I read a book where the pages have turned yellow but the kind of story I got to read made me feel completely nostalgic and emotional. This 250-pages book published by Rupa Publications is a plot based out of a family and the love-hate relationship that goes hand in hand with it. The story talks about two cousins who are separated from each other for 16 years due to a feud between their parents. Rishi’s mother and Mira’s father are siblings but due to a rough argument and ego clashes, they don’t communicate with each other. After few years, when their children grow up and find each other on social media, they meet and share a great camaraderie with each other. As obvious, they plan to bring their parents back together and repair the damaged relationship.


This is the first time when I have picked up Koral’s book after knowing and regularly following her book updates for years now. I liked how she has been able to make us feel a part of this story because all of us have seen our parents distancing themselves from their siblings due to some or the other issue. More unfortunate are the incidents where the cousins who share great bond between themselves have to get separated from each other for life. I have personally gone through such events where I have not met my cousins since more than 1.5 decades now. Reading this book brought back all those emotions and memories back. The way Koral has captured the essence of both- sibling love as well as cousin love is beautiful. She is able to highlight the love and distance both these kinds of relationships endorse.


The narration is perfect where we are able to flow with the story without getting disturbed with the multiple characters the story has. There is a suspense throughout and as a reader, we keep on reading the book in fast pace to know how the siblings would meet each other eventually. Even though the plot makes you know what’ll happen in the end, you still want to go through the process of reading 250 pages. This speaks everything about the kind of justice Koral Dasgupta has done with the story. Even the other characters such as love interest of both the protagonists and other characters from their childhood whom they meet later again are given good backdrop which makes us connect with them as well.


There are many philosophical aspects that Dasgupta shares about life, love and relationships which actually makes us think about our opinion about the same and realize if the broken relationships in our life are justifiable or our ego has killed it prematurely. There are several conversations between the characters of these two different generations which leaves you teary-eyed. There is innocence, truth, realization, love, liking, acceptance, regret and what not in the words characters speak in their vulnerable state with each other.


Author is able to make us understand the importance of love that we can feel only with family. She makes it clear that even if separated, fought or never met for decades, blood relations still find just an excuse to get back with each other. This book is relatable to all the generations because of the set-up and premise Koral has created which is relevant with everyone. Also, this is going to be a great gift you can share with your cousins and siblings and make them realize how important they are for us. The only drawback that made my excitement drop has been the pre-climax and climax. I was expecting some drama in the end but author keeps things quite underwhelming without extracting plethora of emotions, tears and love from her characters and their reactions and loses a great opportunity. That’s the only reason why I have to take away half star away from what I had decided to rate the book. I rate it 4 stars out of 5. Recommended!






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