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Book Review: Heartquake by Ishita Deshmukh

by Enakshi J
(Bangalore, India)

Title: Heartquake
Author: Ishita Deshmukh
Publisher: Lifi Publications
Rating: 3/5

It is said that vulnerability is your greatest asset; it indicates that you are open to bounty and beauty. When you are vulnerable, your heart rages with emotions that otherwise succumb to the slumber. ‘Heartquake’ dates back to 2001 when a natural calamity ravaged lives as well as property. The earth convulsed to such a great degree that the repercussions were alarming. But amidst all the chaos and dread, there was also an overflow of emotions.
‘Heartquake’ uses jargon to exemplify the turmoil of the heart. The title also uses hyperbole as a figure of speech to emphasize the feelings that the heart breeds.
Tejas, a fatalist who is languid by nature, falls for his former lover, Sonal. The story traces their quest to find true love amidst crisis. They are the victims of the Bhuj earthquake and their defenselessness (with a little role played by the destiny) leads them to find a companion who would fit the jigsaw puzzle of their lives. Unlike the mundane Bollywood drama, this story flows flawlessly owing to the impeccable selection of vocabulary.

The story touches upon certain themes that touch the heart- the wishy-washy state of mind when it comes to marriage, the fear of social stigma,
the concept of moving on, the conflict between love and parents and many more. I liked the character of Chitra (the mother) who is not only shown to be a little submissive but has also been projected as the one who understands her daughter very well and has the audacity to take a stand. Even Dileep sounded sincere; he exhibited a very genuine disposition.

The story is predictable. Nevertheless, the potpourri of emotions ranging from nostalgia to affection and hatred to trauma, all make the story stimulating. Fast-paced and simple to comprehend, the narrative does justice to the plot and the characters. The monologues are short and to the point. However, the presence of several characters makes it a little difficult to appreciate and associate with all of them. Another drawback is the presence of several errors in the editing of the story (incorrect verbs, incorrect tenses and misplaced dialogues). I wish it was proofread once more!

One of the most striking features of the book is its cover and the print quality. Considering this to be the first book, the author performs very well on the literary platform.

Overall, ‘Heartquake’ has all the necessary elements of a drama sequence. It is a quick-paced story that evokes honest emotions.

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