Book Review: 26: 26 Stories. 26 Colours. 26 Emotions., by Aditi Kaushiva

26_aditi_kaushivaShort stories are fun to read, they don’t take a lot of time and each can have its own genre and essence. The shorter the story, the easier it is to read, but as a writer, I know it’s more difficult to write, as it is tempting to write more and delve longer on the story and characters. Having participated in the same challenge as the author, and read her then, it was nice to see the same being published by her as an eBook.

26: 26 Stories. 26 Colours. 26 Emotions by Aditi Kaushiva is what the title says, a collection of 26 very succinct stories, each based on a color and a letter of the alphabet. The cover design matches the stories with the colorfulness and simplicity. And each short story is different, looking at a different aspect of life, a different hue but each having its own importance, a sense of power.

Favorite stories:

  1. The letter “D” –  Not revealing the title, as it might give away the story’s ending. This story is one of my favorites because it exudes warmth in its simplicity, between both main characters.
  2. Where Cattleyas Couldn’t Bloom – A story of friendship that blossoms into love, I liked this, though I knew the ending. I also like it for the word it is based around, one that is new to my vocabulary.
  3. The Jade Mandarin Ducks – A love story, but one where redemption plays a part… I like this for the ending, and the sadness that it exuded. I’d say it was ironical, sort of. One that left me hoping all would be okay with the characters.
  4. The Marigold Seller – Another story that I liked for the sadness in the ending, though it left me a little confused and asking questions.
  5. The Periwinkle Ribbon – This is a story I like for the feeling of hope and strength it gives. I wish the second character, the inspiring teacher was given a proper name, and it’d have stood out better.
  6. The Tangerine Dream – I expected it to end as it did, but hoped it wouldn’t. It is a good story.
  7. Rust with years… – Bitter was the end to a story that promised sweetness, but it felt so true and real.

Stories that I wanted more from:

  1. Nude – I think this story had the possibility of a flashback scene, and more, to portray that intent more; which in this brevity, feels hurried. I like the intent though.
  2. Loving Vanilla – Another story where the strength of the character would have flourished had it been from her point of view rather than how it is now. “I fought” would bring this girl’s gutsiness out better than “She”.
  3. Umber Moth – Though I can relate with the feeling of not being accepted, this story didn’t quite sit that well I feel.
  4. High on Olives – The alternating of the voices, first narrating a story, and then talking to, almost taunting the reader, felt odd.

There are other stories that are good, but perhaps, needed some more color, and some more oomph to the feel. The editing is decent, but I still felt there were some places were a pause would have been very useful. And also, it could have been presented better; maybe in random order than alphabetical, make the reader more curious to see if each letter is there. The stories, as they are now, read like a blog post itself, or reading a draft before publishing; with the dots to separate paragraphs and such.

For an eBook enthusiast, I think the stories in the book, easy to read, and simple yet meaningful, would make wonderful company for a short journey.

The Bookworm Rates This: 3/5
The Bookworm Rates This: 3/5
Book Details
Title: 26: 26 Stories. 26 Colours. 26 Emotions.
Author(s): Aditi Kaushiva Genre: Short Stories
ISBN/ASIN: B00SCS2P1O Publisher: Self-published
No. of Pages: 65 Price: Rs. 99

Reviewed for the author, who gave me a soft-copy of the book. The views expressed here are my own, frank and uninfluenced.

(© 3rd February 2015)