Authors By Indian Authors Fiction Short Stories

The Goat Thief by Perumal Murugan – Book review

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The Goat Thief Book Cover The Goat Thief
Perumal Murugan
Fiction / Short stories
Juggernaut
October 30th 2017
Paperback
240
Review copy

Perumal Murugan is one of the best Indian writers today. He trains his unsentimental eye on men and women who live in the margins of our society. He tells their stories with deep sympathy and calm clarity. A lonely night watchman falls in love with the ghost of a rape victim. A terrified young goat thief finds himself surrounded by a mob baying for his blood. An old peasant exhausted by a lifetime of labour is consumed by jealousy and driven to an act of total destruction. Set in the arid Kongu landscape of rural Tamil Nadu, these tales illuminate the extraordinary acts that make up everyday lives.

Introduction:

I have read many good reviews for the books of the author Perumal Murugan. He is the renowned Tamil author whose books have been created quite a buzz in literature. Hence when I saw this book available for review I instantly applied and luckily I got this book. So, at first, I would like to heartily thank the publisher. This book was on the shelf for a long and finally, I managed to finish this book. The title of this book was quite unusual but it increased my curiosity. So, let’s move to know more about this book.

Summary:

Set in the landscape of rural Tamil Nadu, this book compiles ten short stories selected by the author. Each story is different from the others.

The first story, ‘The Well’ narrates the protagonist who is invited to be with the children near the well. The story took an unexpected turn in the end.

The second title, ‘The Wailing of a Toilet Bowl’ is a story of a newlywed woman who hails from the village and tries to adjust her life in the city. Many things are new for her and there is a thing which troubles her but no one can help.

The third story is ‘Musical Chairs’ which is totally amusing. A couple went to reside in the new home and there is one chair which grabs their attention. They were happy by finding such a beautiful chair but slowly this chair disturbs their relationship.

Next title is ‘The Night the Owls Stopped crying’ depicts a story of a night watchman who has a totally different routine compare to the one who works in the day. Next, he finds a strange companion which created troubles for him.

‘An unexpected visitor’ is a heartwarming story where old Paati who used to think that she is of no use gets a chance to take care the 6-years-old great-grandson.

‘Mirror of Innocence’ narrates a story of a child, who starts crying in the middle of the night. She wants a particular thing but nobody has an idea what is it?

‘The Goat Thief’, as the name depicts is the story of a man who steals goats from the people’s house. Then one day, his steal went wrong and the villagers tried to nab him. He tries to hide but will he be successful?

‘Shit’ is a story where a group of boys has to surrender their beautiful tumbler to the person who cleaned the septic tank.

‘Sanctuary’ is a story of a man who visited his native village. Not able to spend his time well, he slowly got a task near the village well.

The last title, ‘The Man Who Could Not Sleep’ is a story of an old man who gets a deep sleep but due to jealousy he lost his sleep and does an unthinkable thing.

Writing style:

This is a translated version. But the essence of each story is perfectly presented. The narration is gripping and the language is easy making it suitable for all types of readers.

My Perception:

This book totally awed me. The protagonist of each story is just a common people who are around us but we tend to ignore them. The author has simply brought the life to these ignored emotions and characters. My personal favorites are ‘The Wailing of a Toilet Bowl’, ‘Musical Chairs’, ‘The Night the Owls Stopped crying’, ‘An unexpected visitor’, ‘The Goat Thief’ and ‘The Man Who Could Not Sleep’. The stories of this book are not random stories which you can read vaguely. Here you have to understand the hidden story behind the story. I am really amazed how amusingly the author has weaved everything and put it into limited words. I am looking forward to reading more books by this author. Strongly recommend this book to every bookworm.

Grab a copy of this book from here, 

Until next time, Keep reading 🙂 

Sheetal Maurya

Sheetal Maurya is a full-time blogger. She is a die-hard bookworm and has read more books than she can count. She believes in the art of storytelling and reviews books so that the world can choose the best ones and embark on an adventurous virtual reading journey.

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