Bombay Duck is a Fish – Kanika Dhillon

The book starts with the main protagonist Neki Brar a small town girl moving to Mumbai to pursue a career as a film maker in Bollywood.  Little does she know that nothing comes ‘the easy way’ in Mumbai. She starts as the fourth Assistant Director in a film by one of the top directors in Bollywood, Fiza Kareem. She has to maneuver between the blame games, art of deceiving, false promises, betrayed love. Ranvir Khanna the handsome and charming actor manipulates her to fall in love with him and takes advantage of her. The small town girl turns into a cunning and shrewd Assistant Director and starts climbing the ladder of success.  Somewhere in between the rivalry, ambition, betrayal, politics and egos she discovers the beauty of her own ambition and the ugliness of true love.

This book is all about Dreams, Reality, Love, Struggle, Honesty, Ethics, Politics, Mumbai, Films and the misnomer that ‘Bombay Duck’ (bombil) is in fact a fish.

The first thought that came to my mind after reading this book was ‘WTF – It’s a total waste of time’. Even though you get an insight into film making and the other ‘filmy’ activities you feel cheated that the main protagonist is so weak that she seemed schizophrenic and succumbs to death eventually. On the positive side she writes the book in first person which helps the reader to uncover his/her dreams and makes you connect with her and feel her emotions and state of mind. She also adds a good statement – ‘if you want to fulfill your dreams, Mumbai is the city for you; and if you want to get lost, Mumbai is the city for you’.

The writer is an avid Sharukh Khan fan and has not only dedicated the book to him but has also got the book launched by him. Now what Sharukh says is interesting, he says it’s the story of his life’s journey and everyone who believes in their dreams should read this book, but this book is about unfulfilled dreams, weakness and failure, so what exactly is Mr Khan trying to convey.

Read it if you want to know about the workings and juicy inside stories of Bollywood.

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