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Mini Shibu 2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Very Gripping Tale March 1, 2013
By Joe Coomer
Format:Kindle Edition|Amazon Verified Purchase
Kochery C Shibu has in his first book, managed effortlessly to weave a gripping tale with masterful ease. The characters are true to life and events relate to experiences of most people. The book needs to be published for wider circulation.


Mini Shibu 1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dreams and the hills March 7, 2013
By Benny Methala
Format:Kindle Edition|Amazon Verified Purchase
Written across the panorama of the northern mountains which shade the lives of all kinds of men and women; their joys and fears, loneliness and livelihood, cares and worries. It is clear that the author has studied their lives from close up, to stitch together an array of characters from the feisty Indumati in Kerala to the young Khusru in Kashmir and many others, etching them in their own backyard and juxtaposing it with their life in the shadows of the Dhauladhar ranges. Intrigue and real life mixed and matched to form a kaleidoscope of emotions and action; the author has been able to give a pithy description of the vagaries of life as it is in the hills. The book was a good buy, as it brings the life and times in our country's far reaches to our drawing rooms in vivid detail. I liked the book as the writer expressed that his heart was in tune with the mountains and the mountain people.


Mini Shibu By maddss123 - See all my reviews
This review is from: Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar (Kindle Edition)
The novel is a complex interwoven story of a Kalari exponent and his accidental journey into the hills of Himachal for building hydel power plant and a side character from the Kashmiri Shepard tribe. Those wanting to be in the business of hydel power plants, this book is a definite guide to the issues involved and the risks! The triumph in the story is clearly Nanda, a tough go getter,whose courage and determination makes things possible against adverse conditions! I strongly recommend this debut novel for the shear live characterisation, details of events( many of them I suppose based on real stories & issues) and strong grip on the subject. The novel is worth reading and gifting to friends & family!


Ravi Pandit In Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhars Shibu Kochery has crafted a colourful tapestry of characters who have been brought together at a dam construction site in a remote location set in India. Each has a story to tell and each has been brought to the dam site by chance or fate. The author has etched each of these characters in convincing detail and, notwithstanding his disclaimer that this is a work of fiction, there is a ring of authenticity to the characters. This is in no small measure due to the local flavour he has given to them by skillfully using words from their native language(s) to emphasize dramatic moments and by situating them in several well known episodes of recent Indian historiography. It is this convincing narration that keeps the reader hooked to book and whets the anticipation to see where the story is leading.
The characters are brought together at the dam site in the Dhauladhars through a series of unexpected twists and turns in their lives and the final denouement is startling, if a little sudden. For a first venture the author has been successful in creating a most readable book.


message 5: by Raju (new) - added it

Raju In Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhars Shibu Kochery has crafted a colourful tapestry of characters who have been brought together at a dam construction site in a remote location set in India. Each has a story to tell and each has been brought to the dam site by chance or fate. The author has etched each of these characters in convincing detail and, notwithstanding his disclaimer that this is a work of fiction, there is a ring of authenticity to the characters. This is in no small measure due to the local flavour he has given to them by skillfully using words from their native language(s) to emphasize dramatic moments and by situating them in several well known episodes of recent Indian historiography. It is this convincing narration that keeps the reader hooked to book and whets the anticipation to see where the story is leading.

The characters are brought together at the dam site in the Dhauladhars through a series of unexpected twists and turns in their lives and the final denouement is startling, if a little sudden. For a first venture the author has been successful in creating a most readable book.

Nanda an engineer from Kerala at the dam construction site, hiding from his past, from the law, torn between the love for his dear ones, and the kalari code of revenge.
Khusru, a youth displaced from his native village in Kashmir, a gambit in the terror plot that threatens to blow up the dam, working as a labourer at the site.
Rekha, a kathak dancer at heart, a doctor by profession, arrives at the campsite as the consort of Khusru.
A village that accepts the dictates of modernity with a heavy heart, its population steeped in superstitions and religious beliefs.

All throng the campsite like moths to a flame, some escape untouched,successful;some miss a step and perish. each has a story to tell and a dream to realise. Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar is about the aspirations of these people, with their cares and worries woven to the site life. The fury of nature and hardships of project life have no mercy for the weak and no time for the dead.

Like an eternal spectator the Dhauladhar watches as men risk their lives and limb in the quest to fulfil their dreams.

Shibu Kochery has woven a fast paced gripping tale which kept me glued to the book. One could easily imagine the innermost feelings of the characters and also visualize mentally the beautiful terrain, with all the vistas and the aromas, in which the story is set. It is truly an outstanding first effort by the Author. For those who enjoy a good read, it is recommended to be enjoyed at the earliest and will be a worthy addition to any personal library.

A tale woven with a kaleidoscopic elegance, characters spanning from Kerala in the south of India, going across the entire subcontinent to Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nepal, Middle East, Africa and Europe. With a connect to real life incidents, a detailed account of building an Himalayan Hydro Electric Project with a terror plot thrown in, this is truly a magnum opus. A great read. Don't go by the Title- It has ample women too.

A book quite different from usual “off the mill” books from Indian authors! The style of narration is refreshingly simple. The characters seem real yet intriguing with their pasts and future aspirations. The author has done a great job of weaving suspense into the storyline which would keep the readers hooked from the start. I almost read half of the book at one go! A great read over the weekend!


message 6: by Sunil (new)

Sunil Sharma Great Read.. masterful detailing and etching of characters. Look forward to the author's next..


message 7: by Bali (new)

Bali A gripping tale... Transports the reader magically into the mystic aura of the Himalayas and into the lives of the 3 young characters from different walks of life, working at a dam site... The inter weaving of the lives and aspirations of these three persons is indeed brought out very artistically..An interesting read... Highly recommended.


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Rahul Mishra Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar
It is a distant possibility that somebody would have witnessed lighting up of fire or downpour of rains, just by playing a "Raga". But as far as "Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar" is concerned, the author has been able to bring all the characters, scenes and situations to the life in readers' mind. The book is a great merger of various facets of human life - need, love, dreams etc. The book is a touching read and gripping narrative. The best part of this piece is, that it is a first hand experience of the author. Though the story has been told by the third person, bu one can easily substitute "I" for "He" or "She". This is because the author has not only studied the life of all the characters; but also dwelled in the terrain around which this story revolves.


message 9: by Rahul (new) - added it

Rahul Mishra In the words of HW Longfellow ;
All sorts of things and weather
Must be taken in together
To make up a year
And a sphere..
Well, if this book were to be a sphere, Kochery C Shibu has surely taken in all sorts of things into it.
A must read!!


Rahul Bali An excellent read must buy


message 11: by Seema (last edited Jul 06, 2016 11:16AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Seema The book ' Men & Dreams: In the Dhauladhar' is a very well written debut novel by Shibu Kochery. He has done a brilliant job and has produced an engaging novel that keeps one engrossed till the very end. His novel is webbed around the culture of Kerala, description of militancy, the knowledge of which he has acquired owing to his defence background and his hydro project experience. All three facets are clearly depicted in the novel in great depth and detail.

Shibu has vividly highlighted the ' Kalari' culture prevalent in Kerala, which lends a great charm to the novel. He also describes how Nanda , the chief character of the novel ,who is an Engineer manages to land up in Dhauladhar ranges for the Hydro project. The intricacies involved in executing a Hydro project are clearly described, making it an interesting read. He describes how these projects affect the environment , also causing displacement of people and yet they are essential to be undertaken for the growth of a nation.

Rekha, an avid Kathak dancer and a doctor by profession who is on a visit to the area becomes a victim of terrorism and is abducted by a group of militants guided by Khusru, who is a displaced Kashmiri youth. Both fall in love and desire to spend the rest of their lives peacefully. The militants had planned to blow up the dam which was prevented by the Intelligence agencies. Nanda is able to go back and finally manages to reunite with his family. Although the novel ended tragically with the killing of Khusru, it is an educative and enthralling book that one does not wish to put down once begun.


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Feroza “MAYA BECAME FATIMA AFTER THE NIKAH”



For a debut novel, Kocheri C Shibu's Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar (Niyogi Books, 2015) shows a surprising grasp of Indian realities. For instance, the characters include two inter-religion couples (Khusru – Rekha, and Rafiq - Maya) both of which have Muslim men and Hindu women. This reflects the novelist's realism since, in most inter-faith couples of India, the male partners are Muslim with the female partners being Hindu. Only when there are more couples where the man is Hindu and the woman is Muslim, should we expect realistic novelists to write about such pairs.

Some reasons for the lopsided pattern in Hindu-Muslim couples have been indicated by the author himself. It could be due to the fact that Hindu women generally marry later than Muslim women, which gives the former more time than the latter to choose their husbands. A case in point is Rekha's usage of delaying tactics to postpone conjugal life: “Rekha kept saying 'another year' every time she was asked about her marriage” (page 111). Another reason for Hindu women being more open than Muslim women to inter-faith marriages could be that Hindus are brought up in an 'all faiths are equal' kind of belief rather than a 'my faith is the only true one' sort of superiority. This is exemplified in Rekha saying “Inshallah” to Khusru's query (page 232) whereas never does the latter use any Hindu expression for the former. In this context, it is significant that though Rekha was a virgin, she let herself be swept off her feet by Khusru who had had a hyperactive sex life. Yet another reason for the preoponderance of Muslim man - Hindu woman relationships could be that Hindu society, by and large, does not mind such alliances. This social acceptance is revealed by onlooker Vijay statement: “Don't know from where Khan has pataoed her, looks like a girl from good family” (page 217). Anyway, a truly secular Indian citizen can merely wish that inter-faith affairs become more evenly balanced in the near future than they are now.

A related example of the novelist's realistic touch is the renaming of Maya as Fatima after her marriage in a mosque (page 282). It is worth remembering that, just before the nikah, the couple had been taken by the assembled men to a temple for marriage in which her husband Rafiq was not given any Hindu name. That Hindus do not try to convert people of other faiths is shown by this contrast itself. Finally, one would like to aver that true secularism can only mean an India in which religious conversions (which mean erasure of the previous set of beliefs) become a thing of the past since projecting the belief of any one community as better than that of another is a sure sign of communalism.

Reviewed by Dr T Guha, HoD Languages, INA Ezhimala


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT AATIR WAKIL (2683/C/94)

Introduction : -
The story is based on the different people and how they come together while doing a dam project in a place known as Dauladhar. The book has three main characters – Nanda, Khusru and Rekha. Nanda is the main positive character in this book. He is an engineer from Kerala who has come to Dauladhar for the dam project but always remains in a quest and anxious mood. He wants to forget his dark past which involved mass killings in his family. Khusru is a disowned teenager who has caught himself up with a Terrorist organisation. His intention to come to Dauladhar is to blow up the dam because he has been brainwashed to think that it is for the better future of his community. On the other hand, Rekha is a Kathak dancer who is out of love and doctor out of a profession, is travelling to Dauladhar. Her live changes when she meets Khusru. All characters have their own stories which involves some dark secrets.
Plus Points: -
The major plus points of the book is the way the characters are closed knitted together and the relations between them. The charaters really have their own stories to tell and have their own backgrounds. A special mention is to be given to the fact how the Dauladhar watches all the characters in between the construction of the dam which in my opinion is nicely thought of. The character of the protagonist Nanda is especially well thought of and the character is the real gist of the book. The local languages used in the book add spicy flavour to the book. Along with that we can see that all the main charcter belong to different places – Nanda who is from Kerala, Khusru who is from Kashmir and Rekha who is from north India. Still they gel in quite well along. The author has in one way displayed the unity in diversity concept of India which actually looks good in the book. Special mention to the character of Indumati, the mother of Nanda whose character has been created quite well and with a good background of her foreign relations was quite relevant.
Drawbacks: -
There are too many characters in Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar that need to registered in our minds and the way the chapters are divided, it sometimes become essential to turn back a few pages and see what that character's situation was at that time. The process of dam construction as in the book is shown slightly complex and should have been left simpler as for a layman, it is difficult to understand but it is understandable that these terminologies were used as the author himself have been part of construction of dams and must have experienced those difficulties.
Verdict : -
Considering to the fact that this is the first book of author i feel that it is good book with a lot of drama and emotions. It has its own ups and downs but all in all, the amount i have read i can say that the book is quite good. The climax is still unknown to me due to lack of time but it surely must be interesting how the lives of our three characters change in the end and how they end up.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT ABHILASH SRIVASTAVA (2619/A/93)


“Men and Dreams of Dhauladar” is the debutant novel by Kochery C. Shibu. The book is being pulished by Niyogi books.
It is a very inspring novel despite the large quantity of vernacular jargon and refernces which brings out the theme very well. The research into the vast sub-regions of the Himalayas, the pulse, aspirations of the people and their driving phenonmena and forces on their cultures, lifestyles, prejudices and loyalties are very telling by the quality of the narrative and is a compeling factor on the inquisitive reader whose regular sources of scattered and disjoint information on these are the crude media presentations, where facts on ground are always left out of reckoning. The narrative of the inustrial march to reach the far remtoe locations, which hold promise for wealth generations, the brilliant and the well rounded descriptions of technical operations of hydro plant engineering have been well balanced with the stories of grime, sweat and transcience of the induivuals, who makes it all happen and are forgotten. He maintains the curiosity of a reader on, without becoming tedious.

The book revolves around three main characters: Nanda from a family of Mathatil Kalari of Ernakulam district, Khusru a young lad from Deran of Kashmir, had a difficult past yet believing in the idea that there is a higher cause for life and Rekha, a Kathak dancer and a doctor by profession. This book as the tittle says “MEN AND DREAMS” revolves around small yet heartening dreams of those who tried to live their life their way. Nanda is an engineer, who opted to change their family tradition of killing for kill but now he is running from his past to save his life but more importantly the lives of those he loves. His only dream was to live a good life. Khusru, a youth from Kashmir, because of his rough past of terrorism, refugee camps and the wrong infulence became a gambit in the terror plot that is a threat to the Dhauladhar Dam. At heart, this man was talented and intelligent, yet the path he chose dragged him to many wrong deeds but he rose above all that. His dream was to live a simple life with his parents and the love of his life but he ends up hiding from the past in the same camp of the Dhauldhar project. Rekha, a girl of dreams who believed in love and the connections of heart., she became the consort of Khusru in the camp.
The author has accurately portrayed the true state regarding internal politics, greed, sex, scandals, money etc.The easy but vibrant narrative which has been put down in a lucid language, makes it an enjoyable story.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT AKSHAY JUDE ROZRAIO (2570/F/93)


This book by Kochery C Shibu can be called as a collection of many stories whose charecters have been artistically crafted into a central plot. The book is set in the backdrop of the magnificant Himalayas. The narrative style of the writer is very descriptive that one can actually pictorise every scene very clearly. The description is infact too detalied that sometimes one might just feel a bit boring, especially in the beginning chapters with litte too many chrarecters been introduced and the past explained. One might feel that the empasis in charecters is too much focussed that the story line actually deviates from the central plot.

But by the middle of the book the author picks up the right momentum and focuses on a few central charecters, They are Khusra aka Shahzeda, who is a displayed boy fom Kashmir who has a past of terriorist history and whose past generates the thrill and suspence in the story. Rekha, a dancer by heart and doctor in profession in search of her love of life. Nanda , an engineer from Kerala who finds the Dhauladhar an answer to his messed up life. Other main charecters re Mangu Ram and Mukesh.The story is centralled around a hydro electric project in the area. The detail of the project is boring for the layman but talks volumes about the authors huge expertise in the area.The charecters of Kushru and Rekha have little to do with the project but thier personnel life is what adds thrill to the book.

The book tries to capture varied human emotions of joy, fear, loneliness, livelihood and highlights the indominatable human spirit and the power of dreams.The novel attempts to capture the life, aspirations, problems of different people who comes from vareid walks of life to do something which would create a difference in thier lifes and the author has been able to do it to a large extend if not completly. But the novel seriously lacks a strong central plot and the too swift flow of thoughts create a bit of confussion. But overall the book is a good reading experience.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT AKSHAY SARVESWARAN (2420/C/92)


“Men And Dreams Of The Dhauladhar” is an ambitious book by Kochery. C. Shibu, his first work where he managed effortlessly to weave a gripping tale with masterful ease about the construction of a hydro electric power project in a remote Himalayan range at Dhauladhar.
The project site, where superstitions and religious beliefs are as important as the engineering Nanda, Khusru and Rekha come together through a series of twists and turns in their lives. The dreams and aspirations of people come alive as the story progresses. Each has a story to tell and a dream to realize. The fury of nature and the hardships of project life have no mercy for the weak and no time for the dead. Even the protogonist Nanda who has seen death from close quarters and is hiding from the law is taken aback by the callous attitude towards life. He is the silent man of the project, the one who never talks. Intrigue and real life get mixed with the sudden appearance of Rekha, the lady doctor, at the camp site. Rekha’s quest for a man whom she can love and worship takes her on an unforeseen journey from where she has to choreograph her way out. The handsome Kashmiri youth Khusru is envied by all at the site. Little do they know that the ghosts of Khusru’s past are plotting to turn his world upside down. Nanda is torn between his love for his dear ones and his kalari code of revenge. He looks to the Dhauladhar ranges for answers to come to terms with his personal loss and a little more dignity for those who perish. Like an eternal spectator the Dhauladhar watches as men risk life and limb in their quest.
It is clear that the author has studied the lives of the commune close up, to stitch together an array of characters from the feisty Indumati in Kerala to the young Khusru in Kashmir and many others, etching them in their own backyard and juxtaposing it with their life in the shadows of the Dhauladhar ranges. Intrigue and real life mixed and matched to form a kaleidoscope of emotions and action; the author has been able to give a pithy description of the vagaries of life as it is in the hills.Shibu Kochery has woven a fast paced gripping tale which one could easily imagine the innermost feelings of the characters and also visualize mentally the beautiful terrain, with all the vistas and the aromas, in which the story is set.The authenticity with which the author has used a variety of languages into the story gives it the required touch of realism and paints a picture in ones head as one goes along in the book. Apart from the technical research on the construction of a hydro electric project, the accuracy with which the nuances of martial arts, traditional dance, Himalayan tribes, terrorism and anti terrorism is brought into the story is outstanding.

There seemed to be a lot of characters appearing, without having any previous introduction or description. Still the weaving of the characters from places far and wide into one fabric is unique. At times it felt like the author expected us to know and understand what was happening without creating a big setting for us to fully integrate the characters in our minds.

The book undoubtedly is a fragment from the author's life on the dreams and aspirations of the people in the Dhauladhar ranges where one could feel even the inner breath of lives in it.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT AMIT RAJ (2784/A/94)


The book revolves around three main characters Nanda from a family of Mathatil Kalari of Ernakulam district, Khusru a young lad from Deran of Kashmir, had a difficult past yet beliving in the idea that there is a higher cause for life and Rekha, a Kathak dancer and a doctor by proffesion. This book as the tittle says “MEN AND DREAMS” revolves around small yet heartning dreams of those who tried to live their life their way. Nanda is an Engineer, who opted to change their family tradition of killing for kill but now he is running from his past to save his life but more importantly the life of those he love.His only dream was to live a good life. Khusru, a youth from Kashmir, because of his rough past of terrorism, refugee camps and the wrong infulence became a gambit in the terror plot that is threat to the Dhauladhar Dam. At heart, this man was a talented and intelligent, yet the path he choose dragged him to many wring deeds but he rose above all that. His dream was to live a simple life with his parents and the love of his life but he ends up hidding from the past in the same camp of Dhauldhar project. Rekha, a girl of dreams who belived in love and the connections of heart. She became the consort of Khusru in the camp. Dhauladhar peak is itself character in the book. Its snow clad speaks to heart and minds in their state of despair, happiness, sorrow, confusion and love. As the story moves many characters and plots are introduced which is both intimating but confusing. To many characters meant it was tough for me to connect to any of them in particular. The life of Khusru was a though a heart touching one. The book connects to life of many simple people who risk their limbs and their to fulfill your dreams. He has accurately portrayed the true state regarding internal politics, greed, sex, scandals, money etc. But the story seems too much prolonged on purpose which some times lose interst. The use of Hindi slangs is interesting but far too many have been used and are abusive which kind of makes this book “ not safe for child”. Sex is an important part of book is portrayed in very good sense except in one or two odd situations(the Katrina and the driver Sherah plot). The book shows the vast experience of the author as a person who himself lived his life at the lines. The book is different and very intersting. Some plots do confuse but other than that it touches the simplicity and copmlex clans of life.

I am way too unexperienced to comment on the authors' creation but yes I can say that the next offering would be even better.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT ANGAT S SODHI (2678/A/94)


“Men and Dreams in the Dhauladar” is the first book by Kochery C Shibu.The book being published by Niyogi books.
The book revolves around three main characters Nanda from a family of Mathatil Kalari of Ernakulam district, Khusru a young lad from Deran of Kashmir, had a difficult past yet beliving in the idea that there is a higher cause for life and Rekha, a Kathak dancer and a doctor by proffesion. This book as the tittle says “MEN AND DREAMS” revolves around small yet heartning dreams of those who tried to live their life their way. Nanda is an Engineer, who opted to change their family tradition of killing for kill but now he is running from his past to save his life but more importantly the life of those he love.His only dream was to live a good life. Khusru, a youth from Kashmir, because of his rough past of terrorism, refugee camps and the wrong infulence became a gambit in the terror plot that is threat to the Dhauladhar Dam. At heart, this man was a talented and intelligent, yet the path he choose dragged him to many wring deeds but he rose above all that. His dream was to live a simple life with his parents and the love of his life but he ends up hidding from the past in the same camp of Dhauldhar project. Rekha, a girl of dreams who belived in love and the connections of heart. She became the consort of Khusru in the camp. Dhauladhar peak is itself character in the book. Its snow clad speaks to heart and minds in their state of despair, happiness, sorrow, confusion and love. As the story moves many characters and plots are introduced which is both intimating but confusing. To many characters meant it was tough for me to connect to any of them in particular. The life of Khusru was a though a heart touching one. The book connects to life of many simple people who risk their limbs and their to fulfill your dreams. He has accurately portrayed the true state regarding internal politics, greed, sex, scandals, money etc. But the story seems too much prolonged on purpose which some times lose interst. The use of Hindi slangs is interesting but far too many have been used and are abusive which kind of makes this book “ not safe for child”. Sex is an important part of book is portrayed in very good sense except in one or two odd situations(the Katrina and the driver Sherah plot). The book shows the vast experience of the author as a person who himself lived his life at the lines. The book is different and very intersting. Some plots do confuse but other than that it touches the simplicity and copmlex clans of life.

I am way too unexperinced to comment on the authors' creation but yes I can say that the next offering would be even better.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT ANIL VISHNOI (2536/F)
“Their fears, their anxiety, their love and new found feelings, Dhalaudhar looked over everything from a distance. Constant it was, they could speak their heart out to it and it kept all their secrets.”

Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar would qualify well in Indian Literature as the first book written by debutant author Kochery C Shibu. The novel showcases the extensive knowledge the author has about the life and people in the Dhauladhar region and of hydroelectric projects, which, I believe was the domain he worked in. Finishing a novel is a feat in itself and the author’s efforts are commendable.
The book starts with Nanda, who according to the description on Goodreads, is the protagonist. He is running from the law and his past is revealed in a back-story. There are three stories of the main protagonists which run in parallel. Possibly first of its kind in Indian Literature. For the rest of the book, he meets new people and looks at the snow-capped peaks of the Dhauladhar ranges. All the new people he meets have stories which are told as back-stories. Back-stories are a good way of introducing a new character.I enjoyed reading some of the back-stories in this book. One of the unique features of this book with a difference was that there were many characters in the book and each one’s past was revealed with the story starting from three generations before they were born. The strength of the book is in its details and it tells of the author’s attention to detail, and you end up keeping track of so many characters. One does concede that it becomes difficult for the reader at times to decide with whom you need to sympathies with even though you are empathizing with so many characters in the novel.
Another interesting feature of this author is the very different plot. So many characters are introduced and each one is shown to be headed for the project in the Dhauladhar ranges. It is only at the end of the novel that the reader realizes that each one had a role to play in a plot that is developing in many dimensions.I expected something similar to happen with the story, only to be taken by surprise with so many twists and turns in the development of the novel. I grant that the author might have meant the Dhauladhar to be a meeting point for characters with incredible pasts and indomitable spirits, in many ways another new in Indian Literature.
The author has covered extensively the life in the Dhauladhar and of the villagers. The novel covers the customs and traditions, the simplicity of the villagers and their struggle to come to terms with the winds of change that blows when a mega project is set up in the area. The life of the shepherd community is covered well through the eyes of Mangu Ram who is representative of the village, their aspirations and dreams.

Another aspect has been the folklore and traditions of the villagers covered in the novel. The stories of Kurla- Kurli and many such brings the reader very close to the life of the villagers. There is always an impression of the happiness of the villagers in the simple life that they are leading that the author is trying to convey. May be one cannot be blamed for even beginning to believe that there could be an impression being conveyed that it is the city folks who are bringing miseries to the village life. Some of the traditions being followed in marriages and the ceremonies have been well brought out in the novel.
The life of the workers in the camp is an amazing insight. The relationship between the petty and the thekkedar, the thekkedar and the labour mate and the other many characters have been well brought out . Of course there always the heart wrenching stories of so many of them who are struggling to make a living and risking their limb and life for a few rupees more. Some times the helplessness of the workers seems so distressing even to the reader. Even in distress there are the stories of the contractors who are seen to be unethical. There is also the approach of the contractors who are indicating that the workers are better off living on the crumbs that he throws than get in to a tango with the administration.
Now, the characters. Honestly, there are so many that I wonder how the author managed to weave them together so well in the novel. Though I must confess that I don’t remember all of them. . I for one couldn’t connect with any of them and I didn’t understand why some of them behaved the way they did. The well accomplished and talented dancer doctor Rekha falling in love with a terrorist and for that matter the arc between Khusru and Rekha, for example, was ridiculous.
Writing wise, the book is written well, and there is a freshness to the writing that is amazing. The classic style writing with the life of the villagers and the project workers form a very interesting part and a very different style of writing within the novel.The author has made deliberate efforts to bring in so many Indian languages in this effort. As the reader gets lost in the world of the life of the construction workers and the nuances of the relations ship in a camp site, one cannot stop but wonder about the life in such places.
In a foodie verdict it can be said that this book is like Dhanshak, tangy, savoury and delicious. Overall, this book turned out to be like a collection of short stories when each character is taken into account while the author has tried to link them together by putting them here and there in the book.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT ARVIND NAWIN (2911/E/95)


TITLE : Men and Dreams in the Dauladhar
AUTHOR : Mr. Kochery C.Shibu
GENRE: Fiction
PRINTED BY : Niyogi Books
PAGES : 283
COST: Rs. 395/-

In life people go through various experiences, have different dreams and aspirations of things they wish to accomplish during their life time.However not all people manage to achieve their goals they set,as they get caught in the chains of the society, be it social, political or economical factors,that prevent them from turning their dreams to reality. It indeed takes batch of patience, hardwork and determination to overcome all the obstacles that comes our way as we climb up this ladder to achieve our goals.
The book 'Men and Dreams in the Dauladhar' written by Mr. Kochery C.Shibu is one such book which brings out and showcases how people from various parts of the nation, different gender and occupation strive hard to achieve their goals along side fighting various society barriers.This fiction is set up on the backdrop of a hydro electric project life and it shows how these projects in the Dauladhar range of the Himalayan region in Himachal Pradesh come with appreciable amount of risks to the workers there. The storyline mainly revolves around the three protagonists namely Rekha, the Kathak dancer; Khusrau, the Bakarwal terrorist and Nanda, the engineer from Kerala.This story very well shows how fate works and how it had brought these three characters together and had changed their lives.
The author Mr. Kochery C.Shibu, an alumnus of the National Defence Academy had served the Indian Navy and commanded two warships.After his retirement he had executed various hydroelectric projects on the banks of the rivers Cauvery, Teesta and Beas.Therefore the setting up of a hydroelectric project as the background can be sensed from his experiences here.This debut novel of the author had been his dream since his childhood and the actual research of the author had begun in the year 2009 when he was working in Himachal Pradesh at the Dauladhar range for a hydroelectric project.The author has tried to follow the art of story telling which is considered to be an important part of India's ancient oral tradition. He has very well woven the story on the laps of Indian culture, terrorism, the lifestyle of the Bakarwal community and the life of workers along engineering sites, with the Dauladhar range as a curious spectator in every scene.
The characters Nanda, Rekha and Khusrau are caricatures of the story along with various other characters.Nanda is a very timid and hardworking engineer from Kerala who comes to the Dauladhar range site to achieve his goals, escaping from his bloody past, his style of living back at home, his love for his family and the 'Kalari' code of revenge.His character has been put through a very calm and timid phase in the entire story except for his introduction. Nanda very well showcases the lives led by various South Indians up there in the North, their lifestyle and their conduct.Khusrau, a young teenager caught in between his own life and the evolving terrorism in his native village in Kashmir.His life revolves around his transition into a terrorist, his maritial life, his image as a person of the Bakarwal society of Kashmir in the modern society and the terror plot of blowing up the dam.His role as a labourer at the site showcases the ways taken by people of such classes in the society and their aspirations to achieve their goals in life.Then comes the role of the character Rekha in the story.A passionate Kathak dancer who grew up under the guidance of her grandmother- an excellent Kathak dancer by profession,was a doctor herself, by profession.Her story revolves around how she lands up in Kashmir for the Amarnath Yatra and her encounters with the Bakarwals.A fair part of the story also revolves around Pakistan based on research work.The storyline keeps on revolving and connecting these three lives using a string of various other characters at the backdrop of the Dauladhar range site.
The favourite part of the story for me was that revolving around the life of Rekha, as it was a pot bolier involving various exciting incidents, encounters and cultures.The novel on a whole can be read by all age groups, but I would suggest that it would be a good read for the elder class of people and would'nt involve much of the teenagers, as it lacks pace, excitement except for a few parts and the knacks expected by excitement mongers.A read through this novel would teach people ways and methods of fighting againt the society and to aspire, to achieve their dreams.
Somehow the author has attempted to capture the facets of project lives in the mountain regions of North India. The various characters become a share of this project in their way to nap gold and their stories have been cut and woven to depict hopes, aspirations, trials and tribulations of people of modern India.Dreams, struggle and failure are the integral part of the story as it unfolds.It is about people striving hard to carry out their dreams and their ability to achieve it,to expected terms facing personal loss and life challenges.
In some or the other way this novel is a tribute to the undefeatable human spirit and the extraordinary powers of dreams.Indeed an excellent start for a debut book by the author.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT HARSHA ARZA (2424/A/92)


“Men and Dreams in the Dhauladar” is the first book by Kochery C Shibu.The book being published by niyogi books.
The story mainly revolves around three characters namely Nanda,Khusru and Rekha. Nanda ,a kalari expert who is trying to escape from his sorrowful past .He uses Dhauladhar to hide from his fearful past.He is a mechanical engineer .He tries to keep himself as busy as possible to keep the thought of the past away.Rekha is a doctor by proffesion and a very talented kathak dancer.Khusru ,a young lad beliving in the idea that there is a higher cause for life.There are many aspects of life that are covered in the story.At the campsite we see that only money speaks and the lives of the workers are immaterial.There is a fair amount of superstition and prayer in the story.The author has accurately portrayed the truly sad state of India regarding internal politics, greed, sex, scandals, money etc.Khusru's struggle in the making of a terrorist, as the character moves along the internal strife of Jammu & Kashmir gets radicalized in Pakistan and Afghanistan and returns to his homeland.His life gives glimpses of the terrorist areas in the Kashmir.The drawbacks being ,there are far too many characters ,I couldnt connect with one in particular.And the part where Khusru and Rekha meet made no sense .At times the story seemed to be prolonged on purpose .There were far too many hindi slangs used .The story shows us the vast experience of the author in various fields of life.It was a wonderful effort by the author .The idea was creative .It was not like the usual novels that I read .
All in all it was a good read and am looking forward for the authors next offering.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT HEMANT KUMAR (3000/F/95)

Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar is a slow-paced yet interesting novel set in the backdrop of the Himalayas where a Hydel Power Project brings together three people from different walks of life who work towards constructing a dam in one of the roughest of terrains. The novel beautifully describes the life story of three completely unrelated individuals who end up together in the hills to realise their dreams.

The author, Kochery C. Shibu, is a retired Naval officer who has, to his credit, numerous hydroelectric projects on various rivers post his retirement from the Indian Navy. The text, therefore includes a considerable amount of description of the different stages of construction of the dam and other technical aspects involved in such a project. The author has had first hand experience of many of the events mentioned in the novel which adds to the authenticity of the information imparted to the readers.

The protagonist, Nanda is introduced as an engineer from Kerala who joins the Lala Construction Company (LCC) in an ambitious project to build a hydroelectric dam amidst the Himalayan Ranges. Rekha, popularly know as the Khan O Khan Doctorni in the region(for reasons that have to be explored by the reader) provides medical assistance to the engineers and the labourers at the construction site. Khusru is one of those teenagers who was gullible enough to fall into the trap of a terrorist outift and has an intriguing story to tell. These might seem regular individuals involved in a routine construction but each one has hidden motives and greater dreams to be realized.

Nanda has a past of family enmities, murder and revenge which was going on in the family for generations. He wanted to put an end to it or rather stay away from it for the safety of his family and for his own safety which eventually brought him from a small village in Kerala to the ranges of Dhauladhar. Rekha, a voracious Kathak artist and a doctor by profession follows her dream to pursue dance and music. Her aspirations of having 'a million dances to perform' and meet true love in a man who would make her heart go 'dha dhin dhin na' leads her to the serene hilly area of Himachal Pradesh. Khusru has more intense dreams which nowhere help in the progress of the project but add a twist to the tale.

The author has used simple language in the book so as to enable all age groups to comfortably read the book though the frequent use of cuss words and harsh language might put a bar on the minimum age limit. Such language does not seem offensive but adds a natural effect to the story. The details of the project mentioned in the book are the only area where one might have to refer outside sources which would also increase one's knowledge of building a dam! Ignoring the techincalities of the construction, however, would not do much harm to the plot. The essence of the plot is in the history of the individuals involved and how the various events in their life somehow bring them together. Having said that, the reader has to be a bit attentive as various characters are introduced throughout the text and there might be a little trouble remembering each one. But then again, it is not important to remember all the names as we are more concerned about how they finally contribute to the fate of our three protagonists.

The description of the village where the work is in progress gives us a deep insight into the lives of people living in the hills and especially in the labour that is involved in such projects. The book gives us an insight into the hardships faced by the engineers and the workers in dam construction in the hills and the way they handle the situation and overcome the difficulties. The personification of the hills by the villagers and the superstitions that follow adds another angle to the story. And it is not just the villagers who interact with the snow clad peaks. The hills frighten Nanda more than they affect the lives of the villagers. A continuous fear remians with Nanda throughout by virtue of his actions of the past and this aspect has been appropriately incorporated into the novel which speaks highly of the author.

All in all, Men and Dreams in the Dhualadhar is worth a read. It requires no prerequisites and the book can and must be read with an open mind. For his first book, it was an appreciable attempt and I look forward to reading more books by him.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT NIMESH


In a project site in the remote Himalayas where superstitions and religious beliefs are as important as the engineering Nanda, Khusru and Rekha come together through a series of twists and turns in their lives..Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar is about the aspirations of people with their cares and worries woven to the site life. Each has a story to tell and a dream to realise.

In a project site in the remote Himalayas where superstitions and religious beliefs are as important as the engineering Nanda, Khusru and Rekha come together through a series of twists and turns in their lives. Nanda is hiding from the law torn between his love for his dear ones and his kalari code of revenge. He is the silent man of the project. Intrigue and real life get mixed with the sudden appearance of Rekha, the lady doctor, at the camp site. Her quest for a man to love and worship takes her on a journey unforeseen in many ways by her. The handsome youth Khusru is envied by all at the site. A gambit in a Kashmir terror plot he manages to escape, but the ghosts of his past are plotting to turn his world upside down. Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar is about the aspirations of people with their cares and worries woven to the site life. Each has a story to tell and a dream to realize. The fury of nature and the hardships of project life have no mercy for the weak and no time for the dead. Like an eternal spectator the Dhauladhar watches as men risk life and limb in their quest.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT RAHUL TURAN(2731/A/94)


This is a story where people come together to work on a project; construct a dam owned by Lala Construction Company. Nanda is an engineer who is escaping his dark past, which makes him angry whenever he spots police anywhere. He is escaping the code of revenge of his native village so that his family could be safe. Khusru is a moving teenager who is in clenches of a Terrorist group. On a mission, he is supposed to carry a task that will define the future of his community in India. Rekha, a Kathak dancer out of love and doctor out of the profession, is travelling to Dhauladhar. But her life turns when she meets Khusru. In a village project being constructed in such dangerous condition that doesn’t guarantee the lives of the working people.
The character of Nanda is especially well thought of and the character is the real gist of the book. The local languages used are very good. Along with that we can see that all the main character belong to different places – Nanda who is from Kerala, Khusru who is from Kashmir and Rekha who is from north India. Still they gel in quite well along. The author has in one way displayed the unity in diversity concept of India which actually looks good in the book. Special mention to the character of ayesha whose character has been created quite well and with a good background of her foreign relations and teaching of urdu to Khusru was quite relevant.
JUDGEMENT
There are many characters in the book. You need to turn a few pages to remember who the character was and what was the history. Also, the book turned out to be a little bit bland and mechanical. The terms mentioned in the book are somewhat explained, but not in the way a layman would understand in one go.
The good part about the book is the way each character’s past was explained and how they are interconnected with each other. Also, how each character confined their feelings and dreams to the mountain range of Dhauladhar. The Dhauladhar acted like a temple that overlooked them all with its pure and pious presence.The book was interesting and adventrous as covering so many places , I like the way author has used so many characters in describing the incidents. One incident when khusru had gone to karachi to learn urdu language he met mohajirs ,muslim people who came from bihar and uttar pradesh to pakistan at the time of partition and lived in a house of Shiraz who was an ISI agent was the ferocious event in the book. And, when cloudburst caused damage to the project and lives of the hard working people was the sad point of time in the book but their hard work was memorable and finally by the grace of god dam was built. There are too many characters in Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar that need to registered in our minds and the way the chapters are divided, it sometimes become essential to turn back a few pages and see what that character's situation was at that time.
Overall the book was good with so many characters with drama, action and emotions of love which finally had overcome all obstacles came in the construction of great dam of Dhauladhar.
I am grateful sir for giving me opportunity to read this book.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT RAVI RANDEV SINGH (2397/F/92)


The author, Kochery C. Shibu, is a retired Naval officer. He has served in the Indian Navy and commanded two warships. He to his credit, have numerous hydroelectric projects on various rivers after his retirement from the Indian Navy. The content of book, therefore includes description of the different stages of construction of the dam and other technical aspects. This book is author's first experience of writing a book. Many of the events mentioned in the novel has real experience of life in hard terrain of Dhauladhar region.

Men and Dreams in the Dhauladhar is written in simple language. It is easily understood and interesting novel set in the hardlife of the Himalayas where a hydroelectric project brings together three people from different aspects of life. They all act individually in there life and later land up at a same place. They all acts towards constructing a dam in Dhauladhar, one of the roughest of terrains. The novel, in very intresting way describes the life of three people completely unrelated individuals who end up together in the hills to realise their dreams. All three of them have some dream to do in there life and they look up to the mighty mountains to find out what snow clad mountains relates to there life.

Nanda is an engineer from Kerala who joins the Lala Construction Company (LCC) in building a hydroelectric dam in the Himalayan Ranges. Nanda's family has a past of family enmeties, murder and revenge which was going on in the family for generations. But her mother Indumati wants to put an end to it and stay away from it for the safety of the family. The family of Nanda has tradition of learning kalari, a type of art to fight to defend ourself. Generally that art was used to take revenge but Nanda's mother want to practice kalari as self defence only and put an end to all fight and revenges. This made him to reach Himachal Pradesh and got introduced to LCC and got job in a hydroelectric project.

Rekha, a Kathak artist wants to pursue dance and music as her dream but her grand mother wants her to be a doctor first. So after doing her graduation in medical she turn towards her dream. Her aspirations of having 'a million dances to perform' and meet true love in a man who would make her heart go 'dha dhin dhin na' leads her to the serene hilly area of Himachal Pradesh. Incidents and accidents leads her to project area where dam was build. There, she popularly was know as the Khan O Khan Doctorni for providing medical assistance to the engineers and the labourers at the construction site. Her life got complex turn when she met Khusru and suddenly everything changed for her. She had dreams to make true with Khusru and open a hospital in village Deran, paternal village of Khusru. She felt her heart feel “dha dhin dhin na” for Khusru.

Khusru is one of the main highlighted character of the story. He is among those young teenager who are easy enough to fall into the trap of terrorist outifit. Khusru has more intense dreams which nowhere help in the progress of the project but add a twist to the tale. His life got more affected due to partition of India and Pakistan which leads to an entire new turn to his life and spent his life living from camps to camps and falll into situation so as to help some terrorist to destroy the dam with bomb. He also had some dreams. He thinks a lot about them and have many dreams to make when he got to meet Rekha.

These three characters might seem regular individuals involved in a routine construction but apart of them, many people related to this hydro electric project have there own dreams. Everyone has hidden motives and greater dreams to be realized. Apart these three characters, Indumati, Mangu Ram, Shahzada and Rahim have there different stories and dreams to come true which all are co-related in the novel. They all expected to have some dreams which are affected by some or other factor of the daily life and they land up doing different acts in there life.

The author has used simple language in the book so as to enable all age groups to comfortably read the book though the frequent use of easy words. At some places language used seems to be offensive but it adds a natural effect to the story. Having said that, the reader has to be a bit attentive as various characters are introduced throughout the text and there might be a little trouble remembering each one. But then again, it is not important to remember all the names as we are more concerned about how they finally contribute to the fate of our main three characters.

The overview of the village life where the dam is contructed gives us a deep image into the lives of people living in the hilly areas and the hard life labour lives. The book gives knowledge about hardships faced by the engineers and the workers in dam construction in the hilly terrain. The hills speaks some language which is understood by the people living there.

Over all, Men and Dreams in the Dhualadhar is worth reading. Good technique is used in novel by connecting all characters to each other. One must read this novel with more concentration as many names are used in the book and which makes the the story line little bit complex. The book must be read with an open mind. For a debut writer, this book is a great achievement and I look forward to read more books by this knowledgeble person.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT SHASHANK SHARMA (2684/F/95)


‘Men and dreams in the Dhauladhar’ is the debut novel of Kochery C. Shibu who graduated from the National Defence Academy and has served in Indian Navy.  
The book deals with a Hydel power project in the remote Himalayas and three people who are brought together by fate.
The opening pages of this book take us on a pleasant stroll where it gradually introduces us with, the protagonist of the story. This sets a tone for the novel which is slow paced yet captivating. Nanda is found to be a secretive young man who doesn’t talk much but is always cautious of his surroundings. He is shown to be smart and a team player who comes to Dhauladhar where he works as a mechanical engineer that contributes on building of a dam. He is later met with two other important characters named Khusru, a teenager who is under the dominance of a terrorist group and Rekha, a Kathak dancer and doctor who is in search of a suitable man that could make her heart go “dha dhin dhin na”.
The book delivers exactly what it promises at its back,” each has a story to tell and a dream to realise” as it is found to be flooded with numerous characters that are made very real through vivid descriptions and clever narrative that helps in building a suspense and curiosity, seamlessly in the minds of readers as we sit back yet wonder desperately about their contribution to the climax and it is fascinating how Shibu manages to achieve that.  
The beauty of this book is not meant to be cherished in the beginning or the end but lies in the delicate stories of the past of the characters in the pages in between. In other words, this book is not about the destination, the climax where it is headed towards but is about the journey that it makes us to take to get there.While the book is written in simple language and can be taken to be intended to be made readable for the masses, this is where it becomes a little dull. It is simplified to such extent that the mechanical dictionary and abruptly popping, Hinglish, Pahadie and other dialects felt little too overwhelming.
A clear structure or an Index table could have helped the readers and given us the freedom to pick which character we want to know first as they don’t come in order in the story in first place.
The book do gives us memorable quotes such as “There are times when you have to fight for what you value, that is what life is about” and “To the men and women who strive to realise their dreams. May your dreams come true”-This explains the theme and intention of the story-line which also depicts what Shibu was set out to achieve and succeeded.
The book has a lot of potential and all it needs is just a wee bit of patience from its readers. A very polite read indeed.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT SP SINGH (2178/A/92)


The book revolves around three main characters Nanda from a family of Mathatil Kalari of Ernakulam district, Khusru a young lad from Deran of Kashmir, had a difficult past yet beliving in the idea that there is a higher cause for life and Rekha, a Kathak dancer and a doctor by proffesion. This book as the tittle says “MEN AND DREAMS” revolves around small yet heartning dreams of those who tried to live their life their way. Nanda is an Engineer, who opted to change their family tradition of killing for kill but now he is running from his past to save his life but more importantly the life of those he love.His only dream was to live a good life. Khusru, a youth from Kashmir, because of his rough past of terrorism, refugee camps and the wrong infulence became a gambit in the terror plot that is threat to the Dhauladhar Dam. At heart, this man was a talented and intelligent, yet the path he choose dragged him to many wring deeds but he rose above all that. His dream was to live a simple life with his parents and the love of his life but he ends up hidding from the past in the same camp of Dhauldhar project. Rekha, a girl of dreams who belived in love and the connections of heart. She became the consort of Khusru in the camp. Dhauladhar peak is itself character in the book. Its snow clad speaks to heart and minds in their state of despair, happiness, sorrow, confusion and love. As the story moves many characters and plots are introduced which is both intimating but confusing. To many characters meant it was tough for me to connect to any of them in particular. The life of Khusru was a though a heart touching one. The book connects to life of many simple people who risk their limbs and their to fulfill your dreams. He has accurately portrayed the true state regarding internal politics, greed, sex, scandals, money etc. But the story seems too much prolonged on purpose which some times lose interst. The use of Hindi slangs is interesting but far too many have been used and are abusive which kind of makes this book “ not safe for child”. Sex is an important part of book is portrayed in very good sense except in one or two odd situations(the Katrina and the driver Sherah plot). The book shows the vast experience of the author as a person who himself lived his life at the lines. The book is different and very intersting. Some plots do confuse but other than that it touches the simplicity and copmlex clans of life.

I am way too unexperinced to comment on the authors' creation but yes I can say that the next offering would be even better.


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT TUSHAR RAUTHAN (2682/A/94)


“Men and Dreams in the Dhauladar” is the first book by Kochery C Shibu.The book being published by Niyogi books.
The book revolves around three main characters Nanda from a family of Mathatil Kalari of Ernakulam district, Khusru a young lad from Deran of Kashmir, had a difficult past yet beliving in the idea that there is a higher cause for life and Rekha, a Kathak dancer and a doctor by proffesion. This book as the tittle says “MEN AND DREAMS” revolves around small yet heartning dreams of those who tried to live their life their way. Nanda is an Engineer, who opted to change their family tradition of killing for kill but now he is running from his past to save his life but more importantly the life of those he love.His only dream was to live a good life. Khusru, a youth from Kashmir, because of his rough past of terrorism, refugee camps and the wrong infulence became a gambit in the terror plot that is threat to the Dhauladhar Dam. At heart, this man was a talented and intelligent, yet the path he choose dragged him to many wring deeds but he rose above all that. His dream was to live a simple life with his parents and the love of his life but he ends up hidding from the past in the same camp of Dhauldhar project. Rekha, a girl of dreams who belived in love and the connections of heart. She became the consort of Khusru in the camp. Dhauladhar peak is itself character in the book. Its snow clad speaks to heart and minds in their state of despair, happiness, sorrow, confusion and love. As the story moves many characters and plots are introduced which is both intimating but confusing. To many characters meant it was tough for me to connect to any of them in particular. The life of Khusru was a though a heart touching one. The book connects to life of many simple people who risk their limbs and their to fulfill your dreams. He has accurately portrayed the true state regarding internal politics, greed, sex, scandals, money etc. But the story seems too much prolonged on purpose which some times lose interst. The use of Hindi slangs is interesting but far too many have been used and are abusive which kind of makes this book “ not safe for child”. Sex is an important part of book is portrayed in very good sense except in one or two odd situations(the Katrina and the driver Sherah plot). The book shows the vast experience of the author as a person who himself lived his life at the lines. The book is different and very intersting. Some plots do confuse but other than that it touches the simplicity and copmlex clans of life.

I'm expecting another book written by kochery sir soon as I really found this book interesting and would suggest my juniors to read this too.

I was having assignments


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Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT VARUN SINGH (2816/F/94)



For all the achievements and betterments that the man has done to this civilised world the sole reasons and cause remains to be his desire and ability for imagination . This book reveals and prooves this point to the helm .

The ex-naval officer has produced an exceedingly good piece of fiction before the readers in the for of this book "men and dreams in the dhauladhar".the best writing tool used in the book remains the authors ability to have three parallel lives in the book without the reader having any clue of their inter relation . Only in the mid of the novel these totally alien lives converge into a extremely thrilling but trajic turn ,which is comparable to the best ever mysery novels I've ever read .

The surprise factor is the glue thats bounds the reader to the novel till the end , and as the pages start to turn the thrill multiplies many folds .

The story telling style of the author is also commendable as the unlike all conventional style story tellers , the author enraptures the readers attention by not following a straight timeline,
every page has a story to tell and every story has another poarent story to tell further .

The intensity and depth of the writings can be seen in the technical specifications that the autrhor has paid atytention to , i.e if the author talks about the machine he will not just say “a pipe bender” he would specify the size of pipes it bends , its cast , its manufacturer , the way it is procured, the place where it is baught from , etsc . This adds to the readers interest into the story .

"Men and dreams in the dhauladhar" is delightful novel , having the special power to take the readers to the place the author is talking about , be it heart of kerala , be it partition torn punjab or be it the elegant but wild dhauladhars .

Also the novel is written amidst the tension between “kalaripayatta” knowing two clans blood thirsty for each other , and the communal tension between the partioned new Punjab ,hence it adds to the readers interest as the scenes are pretty common in our movies aswell .


message 30: by Feroza (new) - added it

Feroza BOOK REVIEW OF KOCHERI C SHIBU'S 'MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR'
BY CDT VISHRUT SINGH RAWAL (2583/B/93)


Men and dreams in the dhauladhar is a mixture of thought process, aspiration and situation of differrent people who were linked toghethr by destiny. It expressed various mental physical and economical combact that people fought in thier life. It showed the orthodox and supperstitions of nature of the then society.
The protagonist, Nanda was an engineer from kerala. Hwe was working on dam construction project under the company LIL. He coomated with fivisious past escaped from law was tuned between the love of his dear ones and the tradition of revenge.Kurur a youth displayed from his native vilaage in kashmir, a gambit in the terror plot that treatens tto blow up the dam. Rekha a kathak dancer and a doctor. The individual description of every personality helps you to visualise the charecter. The different personaliites are expressed beutifully.
The climax depich the fury of nature and hardship of life. It could been twisted in a more interestin way. The languaege used is lucid enough for the layman but also decreases the charm of litreacry reading.The terminologies used is hard to understand for a non technical person. Overall it is a nice book to read.


message 31: by Sudha (new) - added it

Sudha A review of
MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR
by S.Acharya

The debut novel by a compelling storyteller who deeply immersed in his own experiences at the hydroelectric projects he had executed draws the reader into a passionate tale about people and the rigours of work at the dam construction site in the Dhauladhar that makes them walk the razor’s edge. There are no villains and heroes here, but people with cares and worries, struggling for survival, with a story to tell and dreams to realise. The novel is about them.
The story takes us along the strange paths destiny has carved for the three protagonists from diverse parts of the country, bringing them together to the hydel project in the remote Himalayas with the omniscient Dhauladhar watching men risk their life and limb in the quest to fulfil their dreams. It apprehends their fears, worries, loneliness, love, ambition, their search for meaning and security in their life.
The majestic Dhauladhar stands as a powerful symbol of eternal wisdom. The characters confide in it and seek answers. Nanda, who through the course of the novel communes with it, at the end ‘looked for the snow-capped peaks of the Dhauladhar. They looked far away. He heard a voice echo from the past in the mountains… (It is not to make mansions, nor to sleep on the terrace, but to live in your birthplace for a few days that the struggle is all about.) Love awaited him at home in Kerala.
The book gets its strength from brilliant character portrayals that keeps the reader cued in. Nanda, an engineer from Kerala takes up the assignment at the far off dam project to escape his dark past and the law, in order to save his family and love from the Kalari code of revenge. The gentle handsome Khusro from a village in Kashmir, pushed by fate into the claws of terrorists, is sent as a pawn to blow up the dam. He joins the project as a labourer. Rekha, a renowned passionate Kathak dancer and a doctor by profession reaches the site with Khusro after a life changing incident. He was her abductor but also her saviour and her heart sings the love song she has been waiting for. Their love story does seem like a fairy tale, but her coming into Khusro’s life is necessary for poetic justice –for the love and redemption he had longed for and deserves. Lalaji, the men and women workers, foreigners, the unscrupulous middle men at the site and the dynamics of relationships therein make the story so authentic and pulsating.
The village in the throes of development plans suffers loss of peace, traditional way of life and environmental damage. Of course, the hounding press is to be kept at bay…The constant threat from the fury of nature claims a few lives but there is no time to mourn the dead. Acceptance is a way of life in the hills. The earthy local humour, so well captured by the author, lifts the pall of gloom and life goes on. So does the story…
All in all, this captivating story is told with great sensitivity and compassion. The pace of narration often suffers due to extensive information and technical details, which may interest some readers but can make others impatient. The climax, I feel, could have been more powerful. However, this novel comes like a breath of fresh air, for it is not customised to play to the gallery but gives the readers an honest story.


message 32: by Aditya (new)

Aditya Mathur A review of
MEN AND DREAMS IN THE DHAULADHAR
by Sunil Mathur.

A Men and Dreams in Dhauladhar by Shibu Kochery is a fantastic read. Its speciality is the build up of main characters Nanda,Khusro and Rekha -- their own unique stories. These are very cleverly interwoven and interlinked while keeping the surprise intact till the last.
The description of the Great Himalayas and Dhauladhar mountain ranges is so vivid and real that one is forced to compare it with the class of Jeffrey Archer. The story is fast paced with the characters switching from Kerala to Kashmir to Karachi to Islamabad. Keeping the narration simple ,he has very nicely explained the folklore,local customs,beliefs and traditions of both North and South India. The vagaries of nature at the Hydel power project site in the picturesque Dhauladhar valley alongwith the typical local issues are skillfully intertwined in the storyline. He has intelligently juxtaposed history and current scenario with the leading characters to a rivetting climax. A virtual page turner.


message 33: by Yamna (new) - added it

Yamna Mr. Shibu,

Really?
You have a whole thread of reviews from fake profiles.
Could you be any more subtle?


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