WRITING STYLE: 3.5/5
ENTERTAINMENT QUOTIENT: 3/5
Rolling in the Dark is a contemporary fiction and drama that speaks volumes on the vicious circle of life a woman is trapped in and her struggle against all odds for her sole life force – her child.
It is the story of an ambitious, young girl Meera who is forced to marry rather than pursue her higher education as society believes in early marriages for girls to keep them level-headed, dependent and introvert – a prerequisite to being selected by a desirable groom’s family. A family is chosen for her and soon, the marriage rituals are underway.
Bottling her wishes within her, Meera enters her married life unaware of what lies ahead. Although it seemed fantastic and amazing to her in the initial days, reality slowly sinks in as the members of her husband’s family start showing their true colours.
Meera is appalled by the treatment she receives from her sadistic mother-in-law as the rest of the family watches in silence. But, it is just the beginning.
As she settles into this new lifestyle, she faces unimaginable horrors that jolts her to the core. Within this darkness, her daughter Ira comes as a ray of light who motivates her to stay put and perform her duties, unflinchingly. And, as she grows old, she becomes the support system for her mother, enabling Meera to take the major step in her life.
Rolling in the Dark is the story of a woman’s relentless pain and sorrow, her several sacrifices and her unwavering determination to survive just for her child.
The author, Pooja Upadhaya Mishra, narrates how an individual turns into a housemaid in her own family after marriage. It is seen as their sole duty to bring up a child as well as maintain a family without any sign of complain, withstanding varied atrocities. And, it is something commonly portrayed in many stories on Indian households.
What the premise lacks in originality, is made up by the narration itself as the author embodies each and every ill-treatment a woman faces in their lives. The author portrays the patriarchal system that oppresses and controls the women’s dressing style, movement, behaviour and even, sexuality while men have access to all types of freedom.
The characters in the story are seen enforcing the dominant norms of the society, undeterred by its consequence on a woman’s personal development.
Rolling in the Dark celebrates motherhood as is clear from the cover art. It delves on the different struggles a woman has to face in the Indian society.
With a simplistic narration the author reflects on the general perspective on women: where girls are seen as a burden to be freed as early as possible, are expected to silently face any abuse or atrocity and give up her own dreams and ambitions in the interest of the family that has a right to extract every drop of her life essence.
The book attempts to empower women under such suppression, motivating them to have a control over their lives.
Rolling in the Dark might have a common topic that we have heard of before, but it requires to be discussed more and more so as to garner the much-required attention and change the life condition of women in general and Indian women specifically for the better.
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