Search
Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Review: A Slice of Life Novel Both Meaningless and Dark

This Cover Image Released By Grand Central Publishing Shows &Quot;Most Precious Thing On Earth&Quot; Shashi Bhatt Did It.  (Grand Central Publishing Via Ap)
This Cover Image Released By Grand Central Publishing Shows &Quot;Most Precious Thing On Earth&Quot; Shashi Bhatt Did It.  (Grand Central Publishing Via Ap)
This Cover Image Released By Grand Central Publishing Shows &Quot;Most Precious Thing On Earth&Quot; Shashi Bhatt Did It.  (Grand Central Publishing Via Ap)

“The Most Precious Substance on Earth” by Shashi Bhat is featured in this cover image released by Grand Central Publishing. (Grand Central Publishing via Associated Press)

“The Most Precious Substance on Earth” by Shashi Bhat is featured in this cover image released by Grand Central Publishing. (Grand Central Publishing via Associated Press)

“Most Precious Matter on Earth” by Shashi Bhat (Grand Central)

As a freshman, Nina has a crush on her English teacher.

This is how the “Most Precious Matter on Earth” begins. Writer Shashi Bhatt doesn’t waste time with introductions or references because the universality of Neena’s ultra-special experiences has it all.

Nina soon develops a fascination with the occult and other religions. Her parents may be from India, but she is Canadian in origin, eating timbits and Googling Hindu gods and goddesses to which her parents pray. Meanwhile, her best friend, Amy, is learning how to spend her time with the boys and the weeds.

Read Also:  Paula Badosa beats top seed Sabalenka in WTA Finals

When Nina finds herself back in the classroom as a Class 9 teacher, there’s a clear parallel between high school and adulthood, both dog-eat-dog battle royals. Anyone can be an ally or an enemy under the right circumstances – teacher, friend, parent, student.

With the effortless suspense of a novel and the openness of a magazine, Bhat’s writing is transportable as it moves from one major event to the next.

The vignettes reflect Nina’s development through her voice and style of writing. The initial chapters use funky metaphors and passages of overflowing context with detail. Subsequent chapters are blunt, describing the bare facts of events and allowing the horrific grief of mistakes, failures, and regrets to remain between the lines of the text. It’s hard to tell which is a bad feeling — or perhaps better captured — but the novel as a whole is deeply effective and dynamic.

Read Also:  Britain proposes new human rights law

Intensifying the novel’s relativity, the setting has a consistently strong sense of time and place. Nina’s teens are so ’90s it hurts. As the novel rolls from the 2000s to the 20s as Bhat weaves in technological advances and cultural shifts, Progress is a sober tribute to the decades ahead.

“Most Precious Matter on Earth” is both profound and meaningless. True to life, there is no great morality. The book is neither sad nor triumphant. Baht’s novel is a slice of life that will either be completely true, or a highly educational experience in sympathy.

Nation World News is the fastest emerging news website covering all the latest news, world’s top stories, science news entertainment sports cricket’s latest discoveries, new technology gadgets, politics news, and more.

Latest News

Related Stories