Thursday, 31 March 2016

Mrs. Funnybones is not that funny

I had wanted to read Twinkle Khanna's book 'Mrs. Funnybones' ever since I came to know of its existence. After an excruciating wait of over a month for the book to be delivered (thanks to the slow Indian postal service) I finally got my hands on it. The reasons for wanting to read this book were two fold. Firstly, I had a little bit of a crush on Ms. Khanna when she was a Bollywood actress and secondly, I always enjoy wit and humour. Sadly, I was disappointed by the book.

It is hard to place the book in any category, but it claims to be a humorous non-fiction book. The book is divided into 26 short chapters and each chapter talks about a distinct feature in Ms. Khanna's life. We meet her husband, her mother, her mother-in-law and her kids in their various day to day chores and also a few other characters from time to time. It is my understanding that the book is a follow-up on her column of the same name which she writes for a leading newspaper.

I have generally read positive reviews of the book and was looking forward to reading it. Sadly, the reviews do not praise the book, instead they praise Ms. Khanna. Clearly, she is not a writer and any young writer if he or she would have submitted this book proposal to Penguin India would have been rejected straight away. The editing is bad at times and at least on two occasions a serious grammatical error has been done. But letting that aside, did I feel that I enjoyed my time reading this book? The answer is an emphatic NO. Maybe it is one thing to read a column and enjoy it, but the whole book as a whole is just some collection of random things that happened in Ms. Khanna's life.

The author tries very hard to convince the reader that she is like us. But nothing could be farther from the truth. The author was born with a silver spoon on her mouth and she continues to suck at that spoon even now. Normal people do not wear a Prada dress on go on a holiday every year to Europe. One must read the book knowing full well the circumstances of Ms. Khanna's life and then perhaps a slimmer of appreciation would arise in your heart for the writer.

There are a few places in the book when the author tries to talk a little of her life philosophy. That part is not very bad and the absence of trying to sound witty is a good thing in an otherwise unfunny book. Continued usage of non-standard words in the Indian vocabulary lends a monotonous tone to the book as well. I would not be reading her next book for sure. Maybe I should try to read Tina Fey's book instead and see if I enjoy this particular brand of humour.

Title: Mrs. Funnybones
Author: Twinkle Khanna
Publisher: Penguin India
Price: Rs. 299
Rating: 1/5