Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Desi Amreekan Tale

Two boys, Akhil and Jassi, with diverse dreams in their eyes, fly off to the United States. While the former wants to study hard and pursue a great career, Jassi dreams of having the best time of his life in Amreeka, in the midst of pretty girls who would fall in love with him instantly and go to any extent to gain his attention. In their respective quests, they encounter troubles and hardships, but eventually manage to brave them strongly, in turn emerging as a better and more matured person. Their goals are redefined, and they understand their lives better. Also, they fall in love with compatible partners, thus ending in all’s-well-that-ends-well fashion.

Atulya Mahajan, the author, weaves the flavor of Amreeka and the aspirations of the Indian desis who move there to achieve bigger dreams. Atulya was born and raised in Delhi. He went to the United states to study his Masters. Five years later, he returned back to his motherland. During his stay in the US, he launched his blog where he used to chronicle the lives of Indians living abroad. The blog later gave shape to this book. Atulya also writes humor columns for the Times of India, Crest Edition.

Atulya’s experience of staying in the US is reflected perfectly in this book. The mannerisms and way of living of young Indians, who go there to pursue education, is defined in bold. While some stay on track, focused on their fixed goals, others stray away in lure of drugs and girls and fall petty victims to other distractions. This novel is an account of the journey of these Amreekandesis.

Often, the pleasure of reading a good story can be marred due to poor editing, with grammatical errors reflected here and there. This happens for a lot of new authors, and quite frequently these days. However, thankfully, you wouldn't find any such flaws in this book. Credit goes to the author, his editor and the entire Random House India team to have carefully evaluated the manuscript and produced a final result that’s devoid of such mistakes. Sometimes, small errors in printed words do rob your attention from the book.

However, what I was really looking for in this book were the funny moments that would make you laugh out loud. True, the author has packed punches at certain points in the plot, and has tried his earnest best to bring out the laughs, but somewhere, the book falls short of the fun quotient. It’s no doubt an interesting read, but then again, you will find that ‘something’ missing in the words, and that ‘something’ turns out to be hilarious comical moments.

Also, a few of the problems encountered by the protagonists seem to have got solved quite easily. For example, when Akhil tells his mother about being in love with a Bengali girl, she agrees instantly. Also, Nandita’s parents too do not seem to resist much in her daughter’s choice, even though they were against the idea of their daughter marrying a Punjabi. The author could have added a bit more twist in these segments, and that would have made the story a lot more interesting.

This book, nevertheless, manages to keep you engrossed, and you wish that the characters get their share of happiness. You want Akhil and Jassi to fall in love, and they do. This is a feel good story and does hold a lot of promise. I would surely recommend it to readers who like light hearted stories.

Title: Amreekandesi: Masters of America
Author: Atulya Mahajan
Publisher: Ebury Press
Publication Year: 2013
Language: English
Binding: Paperback
No. Of Pages: 318
My Rating: 3/5

Buy this book here.

This book review is a part of The Readers Cosmos Book Review Program. To get free books visit


  1. Interesting story and thanks for the info :)

  2. Never fall in love again, as I have serious trust issues ... interesting book though ... hope you are well? Love, cat.

  3. Very crisp review. I wouldn't be reading it though but got me interested in the author's blog.