WRITING STYLE: 3.5/5
ENTERTAINMENT QUOTIENT: 3.5/5
Every person in this world had their own stories. He felt like he had not lived life at all, missing on many of the experiences that others had been through.~ Hemant R Joshi, The Advisory Board
“The Advisory Board” by Hemant R Joshi is a crate full of life lessons and values. While the title may seem misleading, it all makes sense when you understand the true essence of this book.
Throughout this brief story of the protagonist named Shekhar, one relates to the events of his life on a very personal level. This piece beautifully depicts the hardships encountered while living the high-city life.
If you decide to read this book, expect to find solutions to a lot of unasked questions in your life. In a world where every person desires to live in a metropolitan city and own his/her own business, this book is a great way to get a taste of the problems that will come on the way.
In a time full of fantasies, this book does a great job of giving a reality check to the readers.
Another remarkable peculiarity that draws my favour towards this book is the layout of character development. Unlike many books, the male protagonist does not revert his mindset overnight or at any particular moment.
His personality development has been beautifully justified throughout the book. This aspect makes it much more relatable and reasonable than a sudden revamping.
This book traces the story of a businessman Shekhar and the hardships he faces while managing his tourism company, Westland.
The story starts when he is going through the worst phase of his life. Losing his wife and the declining business model take a toll on him and he is keen on selling his ten-year-old company. The crushing of his beloved car, Civic proves to be the last straw of his self-restraint.
With his car gone, he is forced to take cabs to work every day. And from here, starts his journey of reviving himself and his falling company. One fateful encounter with a cab driver makes him intrigued about the story of all the people living in the busy city.
Over a period of the next few months, he becomes all the more interested in listening to shocking stories of all the cab drivers he meets.
This piece is a tribute to all the unheard stories of cab drivers. It also triggers the stigmas prevailing in Indian society regarding these drivers. Their professions and voices are taken for granted in our country when in reality, most people are dependant on them for means of commute.
After innumerable encounters with these cab drivers, Shekhar starts believing in his abilities as a leader. Thus, these cab drivers end up acting as his personal advisory board unknowingly.
Decoding The Underlying Messages
On the surface, this book seems to be all about cars, cabs, and cab drivers. But this book is a lot more than that.
This book has layers of messages and values spread throughout the text. It all depends on the reader’s point of view and what he/she chooses to see. Here are some that I was able to decode from this significant piece –
- “The Advisory Board” signifies mental health as the basis of one’s life. At times, it is better to let go of a few hearty desires if it threatens your mental health.
- This book puts forward a truly positive way of looking at atrocities in life. If the lead would not have lost his car, he would have lost a revitalizing experience.
- It tells the reader how one’s viewpoint can take a complete 180 when he/she is made familiar with the other person’s thoughts and opinions. In this book, it was the protagonist Shekhar who understood the conditions of drivers and emphasized with them.
- The presence of corruption within the government is also camouflaged at different instincts in this book.
Worth A Read Or Not?
The book has been written in fairly simple and understandable vocabulary. There are just a couple of instincts where you may need to fish out your dictionary if you are an absolute beginner.
The failed attempts of humour here and there fail to amuse the readers. If you are looking to read a humorous novel, this is not the one for you.
Overall, this is a great piece that can be read by every person. The vast array of lessons and depiction of real-life makes it worth the read.
I will wholly recommend “The Advisory Board” to anyone looking to read a relatable book.
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