Is it possible to run from your past? What happens when you try your hardest and still fail? Can you survive?
With the underlying theme of such thought-provoking questions, All Seasons Alike is the story of Bindiya – a girl from a small chawl in Mumbai. Bindiya wants a better life and works hard for it, but life isn’t that simple for a woman in her position. She has been mistreated by men and has felt abandoned all her life. Here’s a heart-touching account of her story – All Seasons Alike.
I’m so glad to be working with the author of this book to present this review. All Seasons Alike has been written by Kavya Sharma, who has authored 2 books before this. She has a creative writing degree from England and writes stories that capture the lives of women.
I find such stories incredible, eye-opening and heart-touching. I strongly believe that stories like these should be written more and read more… and that’s why I’m presenting this book review to you.
So, how’s the book like? This is mainly a character-driven story focused on Bindiya. Bindiya grows up with her mother and grandmother, in a poverty-stricken household. She harbors feelings of loneliness and looks for a sense of belonging and a better life. You follow her as she grows up, learns the ways of the world, learns to survive in the male-dominated society that often exploits women of her status as she struggles to break free even moving cities but falls into similar traps over and over again.
The first thing you’ll notice about this book is the writing. It’s beautiful, creative, and an experience in itself. You could admire the book just for the writing, and then you learn more of Bindiya. The emotions and the struggles captured in the book with the artistic and creative writing would leave a mark on you.
Even then, the writing is simple enough making the book accessible to audiences with all reading levels – beginner to advanced.
The story is tragic with several triggers including rape, and physical assault. It of course moves fast, capturing each phase of Bindiya’s life, her ups and downs and just a few pages in, it casts a spell on you – you feel so connected and concerned for Bindiya. At times, it just gets overwhelming.
Stories like All Seasons Alike aren’t written that often. They’re not commercial hits usually but such stories open you up to new perspectives and fill you up with empathy. Bindiya’s story not only gives you the struggles of an underprivileged woman but also helps you understand the loneliness a person in her situation might face and the strong urge to belong that they try to fulfill. The story also lays bare the good and bad of various NGOs trying to empower women like Bindiya.
There are several characters in the book. There’s Bindiya, her mother and now deceased, grandmother. There are many people who come into her life trying to help her and then there are many that just use her. There’s a community – she has been living in the small chawl that gives her more than what she expects and there are new people she finds in Delhi as she leaves Bombay in pursuit of a better future. And at times, you cannot find a company anywhere but with an innocent dog, Chanchal who you know will never hurt you, which is not something you can say for sure about humans these days.
Overall, the book is a tragic and heart-touching account of Bindiya’s life. It’s not a book you’ll find every day to read but when you do find books like these, pick them up, read them, talk about them, share your thoughts with others. Do this for such books and I’m sure you’ll want to do that with All Seasons Alike by Kavya Sharma. Do check out the book and let me know if you end up feeling the same about this. I gave 4/5 stars
It’s linked down below!