Baaz is a rollicking read by Anuja Chauhan. This is her fifth book but the first I have read and I’m left wondering why I didn’t read anything written by her before!
Baaz is the story of Ishan and Tehmina. Ishaan or shanu as he is known as, is a fighter pilot from a village in Haryana while Tehmina or Tinka is a rich parsi girl. Their worlds collide in Calcutta during the liberation of Bangladesh. Tinka is a pacifist and Shanu is in the IAF so when their worlds collide expect a lot of fireworks! The only thing both can agree on is that they do not like each other.
A series of events conspire and their family and friends make them realize just how much they care for each other but by then its too late. War has been declared and Shanu is busy at his base while Tinka is in Dhaka.
The book is based on actual events that happened during the 1972 Indo-Pak war and shows the life of fighter pilots up close. Anuja Chauhan has done a lot of research but the book is written so beautifully and effortlessly that you don’t even realize all the details until you are through with it.
While Shanu and Tinka are the protagonists the other characters are equally strong. Mady,Raka, Juhi and Kainaaz fui; all leave a very strong impression.
The strength of the novel lies in its witty dialogues and its filmy yet realistic style….think Aradhana meets 3 idiots….totally believable but fun filmy bits which we all relish. Anuja Chauhan is one of the few Indian authors who writes about India with such vereve, panache and accuracy. Anyone who likes reading will enjoy this book. It has a little bit of every genre. Once you start reading it you will find it very difficult to put down. I know I did!