Author: Shikha Kaul
Publisher: Gargi Publishers
Cover Design: Ammol Karambe
Cover : 3/5
Title : 4.5/5
Blurb : 4/5
Story : 4/5
Theme : 3.5/5
Characters : 4.5/5
Overall : 3.5/5
- Aisha- The protagonist
- Raghav- Aisha’s collegue and husband
- Piyali- Aisha’s best friend
- Sachin- Raghav’s roommate
- Sameer- Aisha’s school-mate
Aisha is trapped in her own secret which makes her life hell. Her love for Raghav is true. But hailing from two very different cultures is the basis of their continued friction. Aisha is a Punjabi girl from Gurgaon and Raghav a Bihari from Ranchi. Raghav’s family will certainly not accept a girl from outside their community. And yet, he continues giving her false hopes through his efforts and promises. And then they take a step which entangles her life further. Will she manage to come out of this quandary or must she continue to live in her self-created web? Explore her journey that makes her realize the atrocities being committed on women in the Indian society and the tough decisions she must take, keeping her most loved ones oblivious to everything happening in her life.
Hidden Husband by Shikha Kaul is the story of a girl named Aisha who works in the HR department of an MNC in Gurgaon. She is perfect at her job and is very beautiful too. During one of the recruitment drives, Aisha gets to interview Raghav and he makes it through the interview. Raghav starts interacting too much with her and even seeks her help for finding a PG nearby her house so that he could stay close to her. It was very unlike Aisha to interact and help a colleague on the personal front but when it came to Raghav, she couldn’t help but let herself open up to him. They became fast friends and each knew about the other’s feelings. On the occasion of Raghav’s birthday, they confessed their love to each other and enjoyed a sweet period of courtship.
Soon enough Raghva’s sister, Aruna, came to work at their office for summer internship. As she was an MBA HR student, Aisha appointed her as her assistant. She was very fond of Aisha and Aisha took this as a chance to impress atleast one member of Raghav’s family. Meanwhile, Aisha confessed about their courtship to her parents and after an interaction with Raghav, her parents agreed to get them married. However same was not the case at Raghav’s end. When he visited his hometown in Ranchi after Aruna’s successful completion of her summer internship, he disclosed his love for Aisha to his parents. As expected, they were clearly against it and Aruna even sent a hateful SMS to Aisha, calling her a “bitch” and “a filthy soul”. Aisha couldn’t take in the insult and pushed Raghav to arrive at a conclusion about their relationship but all he asked for was more time. Aisha had begun to hate these four words- “I need more time“. Seeing no progress of Aisha and Raghav’s relationship, Aish’s parents fixed up her match with a Punjabi boy and Aisha severed all ties with Raghav. Unable to bear the thought of losing Aisha, Raghav drank poison but was fortunately saved by being hospitalized at the right time. Aisha too suffered from low blood pressure and had to be hospitalized.
Sandwiched between Aisha and his parents, Raghav decided to take an unpredictable step and seeked Aisha’s approval for it. They secretly got married in the presence of Piyali, Sachin and Anand, their advocate, and managed to keep their marriage hidden from their families. Meanwhile Aisha got pregnant and Raghav was still unable to disclose their secret to his family. As a result of severe stress and insufficient rest, Aisha suffered a miscarriage. She even got to know a lot about Raghav’s family which she had never even in her dreams imagined to be true. She felt pathetic to be a part of such a family and blamed herself for falling into this quandary. Midst of all this, Aisha bumped into his school-mate Sameer, who had a huge crush on her during school days. The course of events that take place post that were worth every minute I spent reading the book. The book will definitely make you realize the importance of family and love in your life, and also that of a best friend like Piyali. The best of the book was the end which gave me goosebumps!!
The entire script flowed smoothly with certain twists at each point. Shikha managed to cover a truck-load of emotions very beautifully throughout the plot. The descriptions of various scenes were crafted keeping intact the thin line between romance and vulgarity. Shikha also ensured that all aspects of the story were narrated, especially Raghav’s side of the story, which was very important to help the readers understand the real situation from both the ends.
The script became a bit boring at one point in time. There were various narrations about a few riots significant in India’s history, which weren’t connected to the plot anyhow. Also there were 2-3 dialogues between God and Aisha, narrated as Aisha’s dreams, which were somehow irrelevant. Again, the mention of religious bias and a letter that she writes to the Prime Minister of India wasn’t really required in the script. A few grammatical errors here and there could have been improvised.
Amazingly crafted story with a pinch of reality. (3.5/5)
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Paperback (Rs. 185)
Kindle edition (Rs. 175.75)
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