Waterboarding: Not Your Typical Book Review


So, it’s been two months and 17 days since I wrote a blog post on my blog. Damn it! 13 more days and I might have probably lost my membership with The Chennai Bloggers Club.

Speaking of CBC, when I joined CBC a few years back, I got acquainted with a blogger named Bragadeesh Prasanna. He used to (and still does) read all my blog posts and give me feedbacks – sometimes personal and other times as comments on my blog. Every single time I write a story and leave it at “to be continued…” he makes sure to remind me about writing it. And thus started our friendship.

Now, cut this scene and couple of years later, he published his first book, 300 Days. I was one of the few people who read the first and second drafts. When the book released, I told him about how I would like to hold his book as a paperback and read it, so I can close the book and smell it as I cherish a well-written line.

Last week, he made my wish come true, not only he self-published his second novel, Waterboarding (GoodReads Link: Here), in both Kindle and Paperback, but he also gave so many well-written lines for me to cherish.


3 people – Ved, Sara, and Maya – Each of them are so similar yet so different. Their normal, imperfect lives take a drastic turn when Ved gets into an accident to not only end up damaging his face, but also some parts of his memory. What happens from there forms rest of the story.

What I Liked:

Writing style:

The story is said from three points of view – Maya (Flashbacks), Sara (Diary Entries), Ved (First Person POV). This is a welcome relief as even when the story gets intense from Ved’s side, the next chapter will be a breezy flashback told by Maya.

Connects with most of the audience:

Unlike GVM movies that connect only with urbane, upper-middle-class audience or Hari movies that glorify rural lifestyle, this story has both the elements that making you relate to one character or another.

Strong supporting characters:

I adored the characterization of most of the supporting characters – be it the witty doctor, Sai, the NRI Swag Robin, or Maya’s mom.

Flawed and unreliable protagonists:

Ved, Sara, and Maya – all of them are flawed. I felt weirdly happy because they remind your best friend or partner. They are just common, imperfect individuals, like you and me. Also, the protagonists here aren’t reliable – Ved has memory issues, Sara tries to waterboard Ved, knowingly or unknowingly, Maya is lovestruck – When the novel commences, this unreliability keeps you hooked till the last few chapters.

Simple, tearjerker quotes:

The writing is simple. No jargons, no complicated sentences – although not everyone’s cup of tea, this writing style makes the book a breezy read. However, that doesn’t mean that you will not be feeling the intensity of the book. The book is filled with simple lines that make you shed a tear or two unknowingly. For instance, my favorite line was, “If this is how certainty feels, I am in love with it.”


Waterboarding is a simple yet intense novel that most of you, irrespective of your genre preference, might like mainly because of the author’s realistic writing.


*This is an unbiased, non-sponsored book review



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