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         Volume 11 |Issue 33| August 17, 2012 |


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Book Review

Pages of Joyous Patriotism

Tamanna Khan

Though a little pricey, 'The Unfinished Autobiography of A Patriot' is worth owning, if one wants to demonstrate his or her patriotism for the country. Written and published with the noble objective of raising funds for the numerous bridges on the 'Dead River', the book contains the rare historical accounts of the rise and fall of the only certified honest man of Bongoland, Babul Hossain.

The writer, in his unabated cheerful spirit, tells the story of his life that beats even the pathos of the Oscar-Winning movie 'Slumdog Millionnaire'. Starting off his career as an office-clerk, Babul quickly rose to the society's top ladder making millions by winning everyone's heart with his ever amicable smile. However unlike Jamal, the slumdog hero, Babul did not have to use his wit to become the apple of Queen Shaksina's eye. This rare opportunity came through a friendly race in Babul's second home the forbidden kingdom of Chaina. Winning the race with his rare athletic skills, Babul not only won the heart of the Queen but secured a future position in her Royal court. Rightfully, he was given charge of all the roads, highways and bridges of the kingdom, where Babul could sprint about and supervise.

Sadly, in Babul life's too there are villains akin to Prem Kumar, who detests Babul's dazzling success. Babul mentions in the book how national, international and universal conspiracy have been hatched to bring Babul 'down'. The myopic critics failed to see Babul's saintly halo. However, following the Bengali adage 'Chorer maar boro gola (The thief's mother's voice is the loudest)' the queen has tried her best to protect him, allowing the sacrifice of his position only after bestowing upon Babul, the title 'Patriot'.

The most notable feature of the book is the ingenious happiness it offers to the readers. Starting from the cover, which portrays the jolly portrait of Babul with his signature Babulian smile, to every single chapter detailing his life between the years 1993 to 2012, the reader cannot once put down the book without a roar of laughter. Like a thesis report, the glossary of the book includes scanned copy of all the certificates, awards and honours, Babul has received during his lifetime including the rare 'honesty certificate' by the Accommodating and Complying Corporation (ACC). Published and unpublished correspondence between Babul and various national and international organisations and individuals form another treasure of the book.

The book has received impressive reviews from all corners of the world. The Universal Lender's Journal dubbed it as 'one of the most corruption free communicative piece, written in the history of mankind'. Some critics anticipate that the book may fetch the 'Ignoble Prize' in the debut category. In that case, Babul Hossain would be the first writer ever to win such an honour in literature for an autobiographical piece.

It is also heard that the book is being prescribed by psychologists all over the country as an alternative treatment for depression. At the same time, fun magazines like 'The Mad' are contemplating suing Babul for putting them out of business. Thus it is advisable that the readers hurry and get a copy before the book goes out of market.

All places, characters, institutions and events described in this article are fictitious. Any resemblance to any person or institution living or dead is purely coincidental.


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