Once in many years you come across a piece of writing which brutally challenges your most dearly-held preconceptions about fine writing. I’m Yours… Forever… by Samragngi Roy is such a piece of work.
It is difficult to express in words how amazing this debut novel by 17 year-old Samragngi Roy is. The quintessential teenage romantic thriller.
As you pick up a copy, allow yourself to be bowled over by its magnificent cover. It only serves as a very apt prelude to the dark and mysterious, yet romantic vibe of the book. The cover also leaves no doubt as to the fact that it is a thriller, both literally and figuratively.
Style of Writing
In the past, I have made no secret of my displeasure for people who use dots and dashes in sentences, play with punctuation marks and capitalize letters repeatedly in violation of the accepted “rules” of grammar. To be frank, this practice of writing adopted by Samragngi did initially serve as a minor dent to the book’s reputation in my mind.
It is, in a word, weird. But weirdness repeated over and over and over again lends a certain measure of credence to it. I wasn’t initially predisposed towards this style, whether due to my closed-mindedness or otherwise. But having read the book, I now find myself inclined to change my opinion.
It was a fabulous choice, a choice which allowed the young author to punctuate sentences and denote intonation and pauses in a way not afforded by sticking to the conventional “rules” of punctuation. This makes the respective character’s way of speaking conspicious, which only adds to the drama of the book.
The observant reader would also care to note that the author shifts between a style of writing closely resembling poetry to first person speech and drama script through the pages of the book. Do not find yourself displeased at this violation of convention.
Samragngi has made clever use of the aforementioned styles of writing to suit the respective context of that part of the book. For instance, her use of drama script in the pages which focus on one-to-one conversations makes everything else but the conversation fade into oblivion, something which did not fail to impress me.
I also hasten to add that I found the one-word titles to each chapter rather adorable.
The entire storyline of this book hinges on the familiar dichotomy between what our heart believes in and what we express, coupled with a dark, mystic, supernatural feel and a twisted plot. No wonder it is a thriller.
As one flips through the pages of I’m Yours… Forever, Samragngi’s writing is rather fascinating at absorbing the reader into the soul of this book.
The voluptuous swell of romance, pain, the supernatural and the mystique, coupled with the constant swaying between colloquial language and quintessential classy expressions, seduces the reader to keep turning the pages, frantically looking for something to grasp onto in the dark, but to no avail.
Teenagers of the young author’s age would, without a doubt, find everything about this book extremely appealing, from the cover to the writing.
As the reader hurtles towards the end of the book, there is this intense trepidation that makes itself felt. All the tension and uncertainty that had been building up throughout the book supremely climaxes in the last few pages, and finally dies down magnificently into a calm stream in the end.
This is a book of surprises, a thriller, a quintessential work of teenage romantic fiction till the very last page.
For all the praise for the book, the formatting is one thing I find rather disconcerting. To my eyes, the looks and formatting of the text appear unprofessional.
I would expect a better typeset and fonts from the publisher in the next edition.
On a Closing Note
The words of Anton Ego from the closing scene of Ratatouille come to my mind:
In many ways, the work of a critic is easy. We risk very little, yet enjoy a position over those who offer up their work and their selves to our judgment.
Let not the fact that the young author of this book is only seventeen be of any hindrance to your expectations from it. It deserves to be read just like any other. If anything, it should only serve to increase your respect for the book and its creator.
This book and its author are anything but conventional, a quality which has impressed many.
If these are Samragngi’s baby steps into formal writing, it would perhaps not be an understatement to expect way better in future.
If writing is food, the author the chef, the art of writing cooking, and reading eating, I feel it apt to continue Anton Ego’s aforementioned quote, with reference to this book:
“The world is often unkind to new talent, new creations. The new needs friends… I experienced something new, an extra-ordinary meal from a singularly unexpected source. To say that both the meal and its maker have challenged my preconceptions about fine cooking is a gross understatement…
Not everyone can become a great artist, but a great artist can come from anywhere.”
Perhaps my words have failed to reduce into writing the ecstasy of reading this book.
So take not my word for it. Pick up a copy of Samragngi’s I’m Yours… Forever…, and relish yourself in its delightful pages. Every fraction your investment, be it in the form of time, effort or money, shall be totally worth it.