Book Review – The Beauty of the Moment by Tanaz Bhathena

Tanaz Bhathena – the author who made me want to hug her debut novel and cry. Read about it here. A Girl Like That was a brilliant book. And when I was offered the opportunity to review Bhathena‘s next novel, of course, I jumped at it.

The Beauty of the Moment, Bhathena‘s second book, is about Susan and Malcolm. A student from Qala Academy. We already saw the world Zarin inhabited and now, Susan moves out of Jeddah to Canada. A new life, a new school, and better opportunities. She goes from being a known face to being the new girl. The Beauty of the Moment is as much about Susan as it is about Malcolm. Malcolm has lived his entire life in Canada. A Canadian Parsi, he goes to the same school as Susan. Where Susan is excellent at studies, Malcolm is excellent at making trouble. Slowly these two people become friends.

The Beauty of the Moment by Tanaz Bhathena, Book Review by Frost At Midnite

Susan, a Malayalee Christian, whose parents expect her to become a doctor or engineer and marry a nice guy from the same community. Malcolm, on the other hand, has smashed all the expectations that anyone had about him. Two completely opposite people are introduced to us at the beginning of this book. But as the plot develops, the reader begins to notice that perhaps Susan and Malcolm are not as different. Perhaps even the reader is not different from them. What we read in the span of this book is a marvellous development of their characters. From being a sulky teenager to a wonderful person. From being wary of boys, to falling in love. From being burdened with expectations and guilt, to following their dreams; Malcolm and Susan find the courage and support to forge ahead.

Of course, there are plenty of different relationships and issues dealt with in the book – friendships, heartbreaks, divorce, bullying etc. But where A Girl Like That dealt with such relationships and even more troubling issues with sharp focus, The Beauty of the Moment touches upon them with kid gloves and a feather touch. That grotesquely dissective nature of Bhathena‘s writing was missing in this book. Where her debut novel was startling in clarity and superbly evocative, her second book is a milder version.

If I were to point out a flaw in this book, it would be the portrayal of a South Indian. I choose to ignore it and not write about it, except this mention.

The Beauty of the Moment, on the whole, is aptly named. It is a book with good writing, great characters and many many beautiful moments. It may seem like a long read, but it can be devoured in a few hours and without skipping any pages.

I would definitely recommend this book. Go read!

You can find a copy of The Beauty of the Moment here – Amazon, Flipkart, Kobo


 The Beauty of the MomentThe Beauty of the Moment by Tanaz Bhathena

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

View all my reviews

By Frost At Midnite

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