paradox of one's dual existence; straddling between
two contrasting world is what Jaideep Varma's
`Local' throws light upon. Varma, an advertising
professional has attempted to give an perspective
on the journey of 28-year-old Akash, a copywriter
who straddles between two contrasting worlds;
a multinational ad agency and his nighttime home,
i.e the local train.
The book is a narrative journey and has been approached
in a very radical manner to bring out the dichotomy
of an individual's professional and personal space.
(the protagonist) an advertising professional,
working for a top notch agency, of this Mumbai-centric
novel, decides to live his life in a state of
complete homelessness renouncing himself to the
Mumbai locals. So, while during the day he performs
the role of an ambitious young advertising professional,
who is dealing with the late entry into the profession;
the nights transport him to an arena which make
him realize the unmasked face of people of Mumbai,
all vying for the basic essentials of life.
has been interestingly brought out is the fact
that the protagonist during the day concentrated
on accentuating wants for people, aiding them
to desire things they often do not need. On the
other hand, the latter part of his day is spent
sub-consciously transcending his own desires of
life; tangible or the intangible.
has also brought out the different stand-alone
vignettes of the advertising world. Be it the
agency culture, the pitch process, the readying
of a campaign, the trials with clients, budgets,
creative characters or the inside politics. So,
overall the book offers a sneak peek at the world
of advertising, which one knows very little about.
of the things that the book falls short of is
that its rather slow paced, and not very tightly
edited. Secondly, although Varma writes passionately
about the aspirations of people in the advertising
fraternity, the real meat of the book really emerges
at the fag end of the book. Also, the connections
that Varma was trying to sew between the two worlds
at some parts do not seem to make a smooth transition.
overall, the `Local' is definitely a novel
concept of dealing with a number of issues. It
definitely is a an interesting and entertaining
read for the advertising fraternity.