Monday, November 07, 2016
Book Review : 'Rasha : Little Girl, Big Heart' by Muhammed Zafar Iqbal and translated by Arunava Sinha
'Rasha : Little Girl, Big Heart' by Muhammed Zafar Iqbal and translated by Arunava Sinha, is a brilliant book, with all the workings of an excellent book and its vivid translation.
A Bangladeshi girl, who is all of 14 years, finds that she is suddenly taken from Dhaka, by her mother. Rasha was living in urban surroundings, when one day, she finds out that not only has her father left the family, but now her mother is to do the same.
Alone and with almost no one to provide her support, she finds herself, being taken to a tiny village, to live with her peculiar grandmother. Her grandmother had never been the same, since Bangladesh’s fight for freedom in 1971, when her husband had vanished without a trace.
Rasha is brought to live with her, and has to find her way around and she finds it, all by herself. She finds herself, stared at and questions asked, before her grandmother arrives on the scene and tells everyone to leave. Rasha, who is left all alone now, makes her way to a pond, behind the hut. And this is where she finds a new friend, who promised to take her round the village, the next day.
The next day, she makes more friends and meets a whole lot of people. And then, she finds herself at a school too, where she finds herself enrolling. She also finds herself joining up at a school, which has been set up by a rich man. The man is a corrupt and a fraudulent person, a razakar and since it was the only school around, she joins in. She finds the school, has an unethical teacher, whom she must fight to get in.
She finds herself with a technologically backward, but with open minded friends, with whom she has many adventures. She, of course has an advantage, of knowing how to use a computer plus having high marks at the earlier school. Plus, she learns how to catch fish, trap birds, swim and even climb trees, all in the first few months.
She also manages to be rid of the horrid teacher, using a mobile camera. She prevents a child marriage plus goes for a school Olympiad to Dhaka. She also manages to have the razakar on the back foot, and more. Plus her grandmother’s acceptance of her grandfather’s death is the final approval, of how Rasha came to live in the village. I could go on and on, but then, where is the fun in reading this book.
I would say go on and get this book, because it is just wonderful, and you might be surprised at all the things, you can learn. I thought Arunava Sinha’s translation was almost as brilliant as the original story, which in itself is a work of art.
You can Buy the Book, right here.