Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Five Point Someone - What Not to do at IIT, by Chetan Bhagat

If one is an an IITian, one would probably relate very well to this light-hearted narrative about the life of three average guys at the IIT, Delhi. And also gave a chance to let me know what an average IITian is !! . Being in IIM with lots of friends from IITsI was wondering how true are the incidents or probability of occurance of such things . I was truly shocked and awestruck when I realised people and young student are letting away their most constructive period of life into evils of mankind in the name of fun and cheap shortcuts for success. The book may be about life in IIT, but the characters are so unreal for me, I have to agree I have been a frog in the well still I feel its very un-IIT like. According to the author, Chetan Bhagat, this book is not about how to get into IIT or what to do once you are in, but what not to do there.

Bhagat creates three tolerable characters Hari, Ryan and Alok, who blunder through their four years at IIT, caught in the grip of their own failures, fears and the inability to fight a system designed to keep the underdog down under. Hari, a boy with a disciplinarian military father and a stuttering to authority problem, Alok with a physically dysfunctional father and a neurotic mother embedded in middle class poverty, and Ryan with an alienated family far away from him in foreign lands and a picture perfect body that houses an inquisitive and innovative rebel, form an improbable threesome which quickly results into a plausible camaraderie. They bonded on ragging day and in spite of the ups and downs bad results, fights, misunderstandings, troubles, love affairs, show downs in class, confrontation with professors become best friends who share their smokes, booze, porn and assignments.

One of the highest points of the novel is the way Ryan comes up with fool proof ways of defeating the system, only to be proved a fool himself. His C2D Cooperate to Dominate is perhaps one the most hilarious bits in a novel that tries too hard to be funny and fails spectacularly at it. Hari has a love affair and author adds all the masala and all the take to the heels scenes and I am intelligent HOD. Alok's attempts at rising above the poverty and despair he's living in and tries to be "family kaa bhoj utaanelwaala". Ryan's constant attempts at creating a family out of his friends in order to substitute his biological family are repetitive and not fairly described.
The novel is so keen on telling the story & functionally tells the story without letting us enter either the characters or their situations in detail. The plot outline is bare enough Hari falls in love with Neha, Ryan falls in love with his work which is independent of itself and Alok falls in love with ghee smeared paranthas (wat are those heard Parathas). In a desperate attempt to improve their situations in life they try many strategies which would allow them to enjoy life ; movies, girls, eating out, squash, booze parties.
However, worst of the story was disastrous attempt at Operation Pendulum stealing examination papers to come out with flying colours and getting caught at it. The DISCO - promises to ruin their lives forever when in a sudden twist things fall into place and three five point some people live happily ever after. It's very wrong that Bhagat t makes these three losers become heroes and how they rise above the system to come into their own might is what Five Point Someone is all about.
Five Point Someone, like its protagonists, is just fairly acceptable and not worth a second read. There is nothing memorable or particular in the novel that will want you to pick it up. Five Point Someone is like a cheap Bollywood movie that makes its money simply because it was cheap.

This has been only book (novel) I read in years nd years 270pgs of it in 8hrs something. The book made me glues to it all through coz of 1.Neha episode 2. Are they gonna become winners 3.How are they gonna turn things around
But the book made the characters from bad to worse.Situations deteriorated..from boozing to smoking joints, plotting leaking the exams..It poisons the mind of young readers though its supposed to be fun accepting such habits and culture in top institutes like IITs is turning a blind eye to degradation of culture.

Young people like us have to be constantly fed with constructive literature which can help him become a positive person capable of turning round the country. Taking drugs, borrowing western habits and culture, have prejudices towards the system, taking things into own hands, language etc etc ..I hated the book a lot and that's why I read it...People have to make sure that things don't get publicity and are contained tight. Everyone have to ensure that youth of India need to have a positive upbringing in Life and for that they need to be guided by positive and inspirational books unlike Sidney Sheldons, Chetan Bhagats etc...

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