Title: The Jeera Packer
Author: Prashant Yadav
The Jeera Packer is a book written for the big screen. It is a story of a mid-life crisis in middle India. Only, the person having the mid-life crisis is an ex-sharpshooter turned grocery-shop owner who starts pining for the good old days after meeting his BFF who he hasn’t seen in forever. This whole scenario unfolds in the backdrop of the Uttar Pradesh elections.
The characters are varied and distinct, and it’s a lot of fun entering into their lives. The story changes gears as per demands and is intense when it’s supposed to be.
The idea is brilliant. The writing, not so much. You get the feeling that debutant author Prashant Yadav is holding back. The story seems superficial. You do not get an understanding of the inner working of politics in UP. Each of the characters could have been sketched out in a lot more detail.
Yadav has the makings of a good story-teller. I don’t know why he didn’t get into the innards of the characters and the stories. It could be either because A) He is lazy or B) He is writing for the masses and knows that they won’t read anything more than 200 pages (the average length of a Chetan Bhagat book).