The Rule Breakers – Preeti Shenoy

Do not be their crutch, be their wings

–Preeti Shenoy

My Rating: 3.5 / 5

Short Review:
Rules are made for a purpose but is it mandatory to follow all rules blindly? Or break some rules for one’s own good? The book talks about the society norms that women had to follow back in 90’s, the difficulties faced by them, child education and functioning of NGO activities, friendship, and love.

Brief Review:
It was little disappointing or maybe because i had high expectation from author like Preeti Shenoy and they were not met. Although the concept of the book was maintained same throughout the book but the whole story line changes in mid way, the first half was lovely whereas the second half was not a page turner.

The book is divided into 4 parts:

The protagonist Veda lives in a village Joshimath near Himalayas with her 4 siblings and parents. Veda (Rule follower) being the eldest daughter and Vidya (Rule breaker) being the second daughter are very close to each other as best friends. Veda is a very obedient girl following the path laid by her parents, taking care of her younger siblings, telling them bed time stories. Suraj enters into Veda’s life as her college classmate, as time flies they both make a very good bond of friendship. But veda is worried thinking she might break some rule by keeping in touch with a boy and then her rule breaker sister Vidya encourages to follow her heart and gives some tips on how she can secretly maintain her friendship with Suraj. Suddenly one day Veda’s parents start making arrangements for her marriage without her concern even though she had her final year of studies left. Being a rule follower she sacrifices her wishes of being a lecturer post studies and gets hitched with Bhuwan and moves into Pune with her husband and a mother in law from hell. Preeti Shenoy had done a great job here describing the tortures and difficulties faced by women in early marriage issues. Veda, Vidya and Suraj starts communicating in letter henceforth and the author once again makes us to relive the days back in 90’s like How easy it was to pour out our heart into words in a sheet of paper, her description of the places, ancient Bunglows, etc the author had taken every minute details in consideration which we easily tend to forget. Until this part of the book was a true page turner while the rest half of the book, the story line changes completely. I liked the character of Vidya, how determined she is in choosing her life the way she wants it to be, not caring whether she is following the rule or breaking it. The character of Kanika (a volunteer in a NGO) is very strong, following her passion, volunteering in a NGO, looking after the childrens of a slum, educating them both studies wise and way of life. The second half of the books mostly talks about social issues, faults in education system, importance of NGO, many such things in a detailed manner. The climax of the book changes the whole plot, something which i didn’t expected yet it made sense, added beauty to the characters

Things I took away from book:

  1. Appreciation for the work done is very important as it keeps one to do more, achieve more.
  2. Not all rules are to be followed just to please the elders, some rules are meant to bend a little if there is even little good in it for you.
  3. Follow your inner conscience and stand for justice.
  4. Importance of child education and allowing girls to follow their dream, freedom to choose their spouse.

Overall good and simple read. Recommendable for anyone.



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