Being a travel enthusiast myself when I got this book to review, I was quite excited. Looking at the title, the first thought that came to my mind was, “is there a sea of things about traveling in trains, that a whole book can be written on it? But as I embarked on the journey of reading it, I was amazed at the observation power of the author. So, here is the book review of Here’s Why Your Train Journey Could Turn A Quirky Adventure. This review has been written as a part of the Blogchatter review program.
Name of the book: Here’s Why Your Train Journey Could Turn A Quirky Adventure
Author: Kumar Parameswaran
About the Author:
Kumar is passionate about traveling by public transport, also through the countryside, discovering and exploring offbeat, heritage and classical destinations, and is always on a lookout for lifetime experiences. His motivation is in touching the lives of people, in different regions, playing a constructive role, in channeling their development, in his own small way, with an eye on the environment.
This book revolves around the author’s journey in the Indian railways. Having traveled extensively for over 3 decades, in sleeper class coaches, he has shared his personal & quirky travel experiences, the good and not so good ones along with the challenges not only he has faced but also every common man faces. The author has made an attempt to bring out the silent voice of the common man, and give the readers an insight into what commonly happens during a train journey in India.
Kumar Parameswaran is a great storyteller and an excellent observer. With this book, he takes you on many journeys with him. How deeply he has observed the things, situations, and people around him during his journeys and vividly explained them in this book is commendable. In every chapter, he has shared about a different challenge or experience which is so real, honest and relatable. I liked the way he has summed up every chapter with where the room for improvement is.
The author has thrown light on many issues which are mostly overlooked but need serious invention by the Railways. He started with Last minute announcements to insufficient air conditioning to challenges in booking the tickets. Long queues in manual booking and down server in the tatkal booking is something many of us have faced. He has also shared how a lack of basic amenities make the journey difficult for the passengers. Be it, inadequate water supply or poor food quality or insufficient or non-functional mobile charging units or even ineffective fans.
The author has pointed a few issues which make the life miserable during the journey so well like vendors charging nonchalantly, unscheduled halts, overcrowding in outdated coaches, getting into the train with excess baggage, etc. Another major concern which I am glad he has shared is safety despite installing X-ray machines at a few major stations as the staff is not much serious about it, unlike the airports.
With his great narrative skills, he has highlighted the behavior of the passengers, traveling without a reserved ticket. Or another set of people who are non-considerate towards other passengers and stuff their luggage all over the place. He has also shared two scary experiences when he encountered a man in an inebriated state and later the TTE had to intervene to throw him out of the train.
Another one where a family befriended with another, shared personal details, offered eatables and finally flew away looting 100 gms of gold. He has shown how irresponsibly people behave sometimes without thinking once about their own safety and get so personal with strangers.
If you have traveled in Indian trains, you will definitely able to connect with the book. I enjoyed each and every chapter but if I have to pick one favorite chapter in this book, it would be “Observing people”. Its hilarious and just spot on!
Brilliant narration, smooth flow, and interesting stories make this book a perfect read. The readers can actually visualize the scene as the author has described it so vividly. It makes you laugh and at the same time, makes you sad thinking about the bad state of Indian Railways. Though I feel in the last few years, things have improved a lot but as there is still a long way to go to make it an International level transport system.
This book has been written as a part of Blogchatter e-book carnival. It is available for free download for a limited time. You can grab your copy here
So, this was my honest book review of Here’s Why Your Train Journey Could Turn A Quirky Adventure. I wish Kumar great success for his amazing book.