The Kabab Maker and the Consultant

Author- Arun Sikka

Published: 2011 , Rupa Publications

Came across this book when i was aimlessly looking at the Indian Writing shelf in a bookstore Thursday evening, waiting for my aunt who wanted to buy some stuff.  The cover and the description of the book seemed interesting and so i decided to get it as a gift for a friend(been thinking about what to give her for a long time :D).

Came home and began reading it right away-Yeah well if I’m getting somebody a book i havent read, I try to read it before I give it to them ;).

Here’s the description of the book from the back page verbatim

The Kabab Maker And The Consultant Explores The Experiences Of Love, Greed, Betrayal, Friendship, And Guile. There Is Darkness Here; But Also A Strong Undercurrent Of Optimism And Hope, For The Stories Offer An Empathetic View Of Human Nature.

Are we driven by circumstances? Or is there an invisible hand in our life?

Does the consultant influence the Kabab Maker or is it vice versa?

Can a seemingly helpless widow outwit a seasoned Brigadier at his own game?

What happens when a young entrepreneur suffering from an identity-crisis if buffeted against a taxi driver?

Crisp,Well-written, with a polished narrative voice and unexpected quirky twists, these stories release refreshing bursts of positive energy, leaving the reader with a lingering whiff of emotions.

The Book has 12 short stories, or 12 Slices of Life, dealing with various aspects of human character-Trust, Faith, Belief, in different social and religious backgrounds.  While reading the stories, one can almost visualise the protagonists, as people one sees daily in one’s own life.

In the story The Kabab maker and the Consultant, The kabab maker and the consultant have their workplace adjacent to each other. While the consultant envies the steady flow of customers in the kabab maker’s shop the kabab maker aspires to be educated and rich like the consultant. In the context of an unrelated incident, the author examines the thought flow in the minds of both.

The stories aptly capture how people generally tend to react to different situations and crises in life.

I liked ” Three Journeys randomly taken, and the Will of God”  best. It’s a story that connects 4 total strangers through the most unexpected of circumstances, leaving one to wonder if its God’s will or sheer luck that plays a greater role in life. Do things happen because they are destined to happen or do you actually have total control of the occurrences in life.

Some stories  leave you thinking, Some leave you with a smile.

The Book is definitely worth a read. Do read it if you manage to get hold of a copy!

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