About the author:
Ahila Thillainathan is a Sri Lankan author. She has written and self-published two books, a non-fiction titled The First Step, and a book of ten short stories titled Waves.
Cover and blurb:
Simple black cover with wording, and the blurb promised an exploration of life, which would delve into relationships as well.
A book of short stories is a very welcome change to reading at times, but when it is a e-Book, I’m a little reluctant most of the time, since I’m not that fond of reading books on my PC. The book of stories felt interesting, and having got a recommendation for the same from a good friend, I took up the book.
My favorite story in the collection would have to be the first one, “Not A Waste of Breath”. The story, woven intricately, goes through a lot of emotions. Sadness at not being understood, not being loved or encouraged when a girl needed it the most, and then a little inspiration that the girl inspires her mother. The overall mood of the story is sadness, but it had a glimpse of life in it. I could relate with the feeling of not being understood.
Another story that had a good ending was Vani, which is the story of a girl by the same name. She’s bright, well loved by her parents and younger brother. The story brings the mentality of a family out well. Her parents care enough to celebrate her twenty fifth birthday, but her relative who comes looks to bring a relationship into her life, citing her age and not really knowing who the prospective groom is. The story ends a little abruptly I feel, but Ahila explores the love quite well by then.
The third of my favorites is “One Foolish Mistake”, which has a sense of fate associated with it. It hinges around three characters and their thoughts. One holds on to the past, another decides to abandon it and the third decides to abandon a future. It’s the third that felt like fate, and a fate that could have been avoided. But then again, that’s life.
The other seven stories in the book are all nicely written too, in simple flowing language. Some like “The Cuckoo”, “The Birthday Wish” and “The Mango Tree” appealed to me almost as much as these three, and the first one had a sad but expectable ending. The remaining four was here and there. I liked them, but not very.
Overall, each of the stories provokes thought, and I like that. I found a couple of typos, but nothing to ruin the flow of the stories. One thing I didn’t like was the words in the local language. (I guess it was a dialect of Tamil, or Sinhalese maybe?) I couldn’t understand it much, so it felt out of place.
I liked the read a lot, and I hope I get to read more of her stories soon.
Author: Ahila Thillainathan
Genre: Short Stories
Publishers: Self Published
Price: INR. 165
(Aug 8th, 2013)