Book Review – Vichhoda
Author: Harinder Sikka
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: Penguin eBury Press
Book Blurb – The year is 1950; the Liaquat-Nehru Pact has been signed between India and Pakistan; she doesn’t know it will change her life forever; it will also make her stronger. Bibi Amrit Kaur’s life is literally torn apart in the 1947 riots. She’s now in a different country with a different identity. She accepts this new life gracefully and begins a new chapter. She gets married and has two children. Life, however, has something else in store for her. It breaks her apart. Again, This time the pain is unbearable.
But the hope that she will reunite with her children and be whole again keeps her alive. And she doesn’t let the bitterness cloud her days, becoming a beacon of hope and courage for all.
About the Book – The book, Vichhoda, is about the character ‘Bibi’ and her life journey since her childhood till death. This book throws light on the massacre that had happened in India during the partition. A girl from the Sardar family who escaped and was guarded by an old Muslim whose sons were also killed during this bloodshed. She was a beautiful lady with her very identity, never occupied by the old man that she was carrying being a Sikh. She was married in Pakistan and had two kids.
Later she had to leave the country as she badly injured a Police officer who tried to assassinate her character. She then managed to reach India and was helped by the Indian Army to get home. Soon she earned respect and her velour story was widespread in the village. The same incident happened in her village in India as well where one moron tried to rape her, but she badly wounded him to death, which given her even more fame. Later an Army officer proposes her and her life changes entirely. During her happy marriage life, a war took place between India and Pakistan, where India defeated Pakistan. Many more incidents took place during her lifetime.
A time came in her life when she found herself alone again. In the end, she desired to visit Pakistan to meet her two sons and ex-husband. How the journey goes, whether she made it or not, with little information in hand that to forty years old, is all about the story. The story is short and crisp yet very strong. A very strong face of a woman is portrayed by the writer. How the character sacrificed in her life, faced religious challenges, and fought for her self-esteem is well scripted. The writer is Sikh and has a sound knowledge of Punjabi culture and the Indo-Pak border area, and he cashed it to the fullest while writing. The book is really good and binds you with its story from beginning to end. The story keeps making you inquisitive about its forthcoming events.
My Critique – The story of the Vichhoda is captivating and effective. The scenes are well described. The plot is not big yet effectively strong. The core of the Army and their attitude is worth reading. The way, the writer has shared the corruption issue is Pakistan is commendable. Writer himself is from a Sikh family hence the Punjabi culture and his faith is clearly visible in the book. The beauty of the story is its continuous flow and keeping the momentum throughout the reading. I would like to congratulate the writer ‘Harinder Sikka’ for accomplishing an admired work. His book ‘VICHHODA’ is not only worth reading just for the story but also, because it advocates women empowerment in society and their real strength in all aspects of life in a positive manner.
Rating : 4/5
Best Buy: Amazon – Paperback at Rs.268/-
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It would be great to read the story of vichhoda. Seems like a nice book to read for sure
The plot seems intriguing to me, you’ve reviewed it great! Would like to read vichhoda.
This is such an honest and unbiased review. I have read Calling Sehmat by the same Author and loved it. Your review has prompted me to go for this one as well. Glad a read this post.
Well reviewed, this book had been on my TBR.
I loved Calling Sehmat! I will certainly read this book, sounds like an un-putdownable book!
This book looks really a nice read.. Would love to give it a try thanks for sharing the review.
I love historical fiction and this one certainly looks interesting. Thank you for the recommendation.
Enjoyed reading your review. I have had this book on my TBR for a while and your review has prompted me to go pick it up next. Although I have been reading too many books on the partition lately.
Seems to be an interesting read for sure.
The vichoda title, itself has made me curious.
thanks for the detailed review.
How well do you review, I would love to read the book now
This seems to be a good read. Definitely on my tbr.
This book review is very appealing & the author’s name being Harinder Sikka has added to the appeal factor. I am looking forward to reading this book.
Such a nice story , which has a deep love for the country. Would try to get one for me.
This is one epic story that any one can read. If you’re interested in the 1947 partition and the families affected, this is one story you must read. Quite an epic review ya.
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I’ve only heard of calling Sehmat. This sounds really interesting. Will read it.
Such a strong story line. I will be reading this one for sure. Your review is short but to the point. Bibi’s journey during partition is a journey which many have gone through in reality at that period.
I would love to rtead this book as it is written by Harinder Sikka. We already know about Sehmat, thanks to this author. I loved the plot and since it’s a short read, I definitely would love to lay my hands on them. Good review.
I really liked Raazi, based on ‘Calling Sehmat’. Your review makes me want to read Vichhoda. #MyFriendAlexa #TinaReads