Beyond School by Chitra Anand

There are lot of books being written today and thankfully , some of them are about teenage issues and parenting. "Beyond School" is one such wonderful book that has Shail , his parents , his teacher Gladys under spotlight and through their interactions with other people ,the book weaves an almost accurate account of any child in the last years of school.

We all go through the stage where we swing between extreme love and anger at our parents. Some times we irrationally and intentionally have done things to irritate them ;perhaps our way to show them hoe we felt under their constant nagging. Its portrayed so well here with Shail and his father Sushil and then there is Sushil thinking how he was a rebel in his family. There are similarities as well as differences in the intentions ; which is what the younger generation fails to understand when we throw tantrums and accusations meaninglessly.

Shail's parents are very understanding and cooperative folks which he realizes only when he happens to be in trouble and his parents alone support him. By focusing on other's behavior and way of dealing problems , the author clearly makes the reader realizes which is the best way and how to avoid the mistakes of others.

My favorite part was when shail's mother reads his messages to his girlfriend and is shocked by the frank references to their sexuality. The way the author sorts her thoughts is brilliant.

Glady's past , her experiences and her lessons shape her present and future. She represents the set of students who are different and hence a little confused about their identity. Her father is her mentor and his patience alone helps her move on from the childhood scars. I loved her father's character the most. In so many ways, he reminded me of my mother.

All in all , this is one of the best reads for me from Indian fiction this year. I will love all teenagers and parents to read this and find a mirror to their life.

My Rating : 5/5

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