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Review – “Sindoori Ranng” by Gargi Saxena

Sindoori Ranng by Gargi Saxena is a short story of a young girl living in a small Indian town with her parents and two siblings. This story follows a couple of months of her life, which turns out to be the most important and decisive phase of her life.

Sindoori is a normal middle-class girl studying in college with big dreams of achieving something in life. She has a boyfriend, 7 years older than herself, whom she adores but doesn’t get the same feeling back. Still, she sticks up to him and he blames until the day he hits her. Though she leaves him, she lands into trouble again with a mysterious stalker, who claims to be in love with her and wants to marry her. To make matters worse, her ex comes back knocking for forgiveness.
Will Sindoori be able to release herself of the cage she is caught in? Will she be able to soar high and have the love she is meant to have, with herself?

The story is narrated in the third person in quite a simple language. Since the length of the story is shorter than short, more of a blink and you miss it kinda magazine stories (I read it in less than an hour), the ones that we used to get in the 90s and the early 2000s, it reminds of the kind of motivational stories they used to print. Even though I had barely touched teens back then, I used to sneak my mother’s magazines when she was not around to have a look and mostly ended up reading such stories. The number of characters here is less too. And lesser is the characterization apart from the protagonist, which mostly is left to the reader to imagine. Usually, I would have said that it’s laxity on the part of the author and an imbalanced way to leave so much onto the reader, but here, I must say that it was necessary.
A look at this story would not make it remarkable or any different from a lot of stories meant to motivate the young crowd by putting them onto the right path and teaching the difference between what’s right and what’s not, choosing what’s best for them and follow their heart. Instead, a look deep within the lines would truly justify the need for this story, the dilemma of a young girl at an age, where we all have been and the rest will be, sooner or later, when fairytales seem more important than a happy life, and the subsequent realization of truth via lost self-respect. This story is straight and simple.
I neither would say it was a great story, nor would I negate it, but yes, it’s a story that may strike a chord with many of those young girls, who are trying to figure the purpose of their lives.

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