Monday, June 5, 2017

Book Review-Anand Suspi's Half Pants Full Pants

Anand Suspi


Half Pants Full Pants is a sort of childhood autobiography set in Shimoga of the 70s and 80s. Given the era and milieu that he grew up in, it carries a flavor similar to that of Malgudi Days. All the characters in the book are real and most of them are still in Shimoga, of course now in their mid-40s. Quite a few are from prominent families and are now active and important members of Shimoga. The book vividly captures the real childhood adventures of this generation of people in Shimoga. It’s a glorious reminiscence as well as a tribute to this wonderful town.

R. Balki says

“After Malgudi Days, I could never imagine that someone could create a childhood classic for adults to regain their innocence even for a few hours. Suspi’s tales would have made R K Narayan smile. Oh! That beautiful Kannadiga gene!”

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My Honest Review:

          When was the last time, after reading a story/book did you put the book down and went into flashback into your childhood, trying to remember or connect the story you have just read with an incident or memory of your childhood?

            Half Pants Full Pants takes you back to your childhood, makes you remember the pranks you pulled in school, on your unsuspecting cousins and friends or on your sibling.

            Hats off to the author Anand Suspi in helping the readers reminisce our childhood. Till now we had limited literature like R K Narayan’s Malgudi Days, which showcased villages in rural Karnataka, bringing out the simplicity and innocence of people and their day-to-day instances in 70’s and 80’s.

            But that now we have Half Pants Full Pants, which is definitely an interesting and addictive read. If you know Kannada language, then it's a plus point as you can instantly connect with the Kannada lingo used in the book.

            In 70’s and 80’s and even in 90’s when technology was not advanced and there were no smartphones, cable and other facilities, and where evenings were spent with neighboring kids and ladies sharing recipes or household tips, where children did have a childhood full of outdoor games and pranks, this book is flashback of life which only people born before the advent of advanced technology can connect to.

            Personally I enjoyed half pants tales more than full pants ones.

            Even the cover page brings back memories as in those days 5 and 10 paisa meant a great deal and we used to collect them in our small piggy banks (though in those days it was known as “Hundi”).

            Full points to the author for his writing style, simplicity in language, for front cover and thanks for reviving our inner child and childhood. 

About the author

An advertising writer for over 20 years, he started with Mudra, Mumbai in 1995 and subsequently spent a large part of his career in Lowe Lintas working under Balki. He was the Creative Head of Lowe Delhi between 2007 and 2010. Currently, he lives in Gurgaon and is the co-founder of an ad agency called AndAnd Brand Partners.

Half Pants Full Pants is his first book, a sort of childhood autobiography set in Shimoga of the 70s and 80s. Given the era and milieu that he grew up in, it carries a flavor similar to that of Malgudi Days. The notable difference would be that every story is real and the characters are all in their mid-40s now, often reminiscing about the gloriousness of their growing up years.

Featured in New Indian Express

The Hindu

Times of India

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