This book is authored by Major Shona George, Regiment of Artillery, Indian Army, a personal friend. Rather, his father Late Colonel Raju George, again from Artillery and I shared many hours discussing various subjects ranging from military, history, religion, faith, parenting, philosophy, etc.
The book is fast paced and gripping. It is a about 160 pages – short enough hold your interest and cover the essentials, but long enough to get into your mind with a detailed account of what an Indian Army Officer – Sam Kapoor goes through.
The language used is simple, with adequate explanations about other language words and also military terminologies. The book is as expected, divided into three sections.
The first dealing with Sam’s childhood of growing up in the Military Cantonments – a gypsy life – natured in Assam and nurtured in Gujarat, Maharashtra, Bengal, Rajasthan, Delhi, Nagaland – rather most Provinces of India Union. The life of a kid maturing to an adult through his teens is well etched. The language and narration keeps up with the innocence of a kid, with all the pranks, comical situations and activities the youngsters indulge in. This chapter depicts the growth of Sam into a leader, through his various childhood activities. Turning into adolescence – a university student in Delhi – and the hiccups everyone faces, interaction with friends, crushes, infatuations and ultimate love for a girl has been essayed out with its essence intact. Ultimate dilemma of Sam to choose between his dream of becoming an Army officer like his dad and his love gives a cinematic twist to the narration.
Sam as a newly commissioned Lieutenant serving in Siachen Glacier – the highest and coldest battlefield in the world – forms the second part. It is real fast paced, fascinating and will surely touch your inner cord. What goes through Sam’s mind, without any dilution has been well explained, especially what Sam goes through losing the soldiers under his command. The irony every Army Officer faces while breaking the news of loss of a soldier to his parent, carrying out the last rites of an officer whom he met briefly, digging out a soldier trapped under an avalanche – could not have been explained better. At least I can vouch for it having been through similar situations.
Third part of the book deals with the operations in Kashmir Valley, dealing with terrorists. Here again the author has done justice bringing out what goes through Sam’s mind as a military leader. This I am sure is an experience most Officers of the Indian Army in the last three decades would have been through.
This book is a must read for all those who follow the Indian Army, its Officers and Soldiers. The reader will surely end up with a feeling of patriotism and leave you with a hair-raising and spine-chilling sensation.
A prescription for sure of all those self-claimed Desh-Bhakths.
The book is available on Amazon.in, eBay and Flipkart. The ebook version is available on readwhere.com and the international edition is available on Amazon.com.