THEME: 3.5/5 CONTENT: 3/5 WRITING STYLE: 2.5/5 ENTERTAINMENT: 2.5/5
“From every few thousand kilometers, we get the reason for the next few thousand kilometres.”– Anand Krishna Panicker, A Few Thousand Kilometres of Happiness
Even though I’m not a biker by any means – anyone who knows me will tell you that I’m the least likely person to be into biking. However, I am undeniably passionate about traveling. I explore far and wide, both through the pages of books and in the physical world.
Travel writing, especially the non-fiction kind, holds a special place in my heart because it combines two of my favorite things in the world. It effortlessly brings together my love for reading and my love for exploring new places.
It was during my search for a captivating travel book that I stumbled upon “A Few Thousand Kilometres of Happiness” by Anand Krishna Panicker on my Kindle. But before delving into the book, let me give you a brief introduction to the author.
About the author
Anand Krishna Panicker, like many people his age, dreams of retiring early and wealthy. He has a strong passion for biking, especially riding his motorcycle over long distances.
An engineer by profession, he has had the opportunity to travel to various parts of India, which has given him a profound perspective on life itself.
Currently, he works as an Instrumentation Engineer in Nigeria. A Few Thousand Kilometres of Happiness is his first book, marking his debut as an author.
What is the book all about?
A Few Thousand Kilometres of Happiness narrates the captivating tale of Anand Krishnan and Varun Kumar, two motorcycle tourers who embark on an extraordinary journey spanning several thousand kilometers.
This book intricately captures their expedition, chronicling the various incidents, conflicts, nightlife encounters, challenges, and accidents they encounter along the way. Beyond all these adventures, it delves into the profound story of friendship and brotherhood that binds these two bikers together.
The book’s writing is simple and relatable, starting with the planning of the journey. Despite limited funds, the two friends, driven by ambition and passion, decide to proceed with their trip. They make spontaneous and carefree decisions, tweaking their initial plan to accommodate various circumstances.
Krishna shares their many encounters, from remote villages to forest roads. One exciting detail is their decision to fill both tires with Nitrogen, which would be helpful in case of a flat tire.
He fondly talks about their bikes, a 2015 model Royal Enfield Classic 350cc Bullet and a 2014 model Hero Honda Karizma 223cc Motorcycle. Throughout the book, their passion and love for their bikes shine through.
The story unfolds chronologically as they visit different places like Kollam, Bangalore, Davangere, Belagavi, and Goa. Along the way, they encounter unexpected twists that halt their journey. The author writes candidly, holding nothing back as if narrating the story to a dear friend.
Readers learn about a deadly accident, a police investigation, a truck mishap, the issue of corruption, and despite the tragic events the many cherished memories the author managed to create. The book is adorned with personal photographs generously shared, enhancing these memories.
What could have been better?
While the journey itself holds intrigue, the writing in the book falls short of expectations. It lacks a coherent structure and fails to evoke the desired impact on the reader. The absence of that “wow factor” is palpable. Moreover, the tone remains monotonous throughout, failing to ignite excitement in the reader. As a reader myself, I felt let down by the lackluster storytelling and was left yearning for a more engaging experience.
Want to read it for yourself? Buy your copy of the book using the link below.