Fiction is my preferred form of books when it comes to reading, somehow non-fiction have never truly interested me unless they come from a very trusted and credible source.
But the autobiography by R.K. Somany ‘Bringing The Rainbow- The Hindware Story’ is one I am glad to have given a read to and believe it could be a really good book for budding entrepreneurs and those who wish to start their own business. It is also a good book for all those non-fiction lovers and in my case reluctant non-fiction readers too.
I believe most of you would be confused as to who exactly is R.K. Somany. Well, I’m sure you must know of the extremely well known Hindware brand, the brand that graces the bathrooms of many of our homes and makes them look just a bit more classy than they would otherwise look.
Yes, R.K. Somany is the founder of that company and the brains behind well… everything you could say.
‘Brining the Rainbow’ was recommended by a friend, and guys, it was truly a well-written book and worth my time.
In order to give you a more comprehensive outlook to the book, let’s get on with the review, shall we?
The first thing that struck me when reading it was that in certain places or perhaps mostly during the instances where Somany recounts his childhood anecdotes in school and with his friends, the writing felt exceptionally similar to R.K. Narayan’s wonderful and my personal favourite Swami and His Friends.
No, guys, I’m not kidding or making it up. The wording and the way Somany set the scene during those times, it felt quite similar to how Narayan did it.
I feel this speaks towards the author and his ability to recreate his childhood so perfectly, and for a first-time author, I think it’s a great honour to be compared to R.K. Narayan himself.
There was this one story, where Somany described how he and his classmates would mess with one of their teachers called Mr. White. With a blow pipe constructed out of a glass tube, they could fire away chickpeas whenever Mr. White’s back was turned. But as we all know, Somany was caught doing this once and faced his punishment too in the form of his teacher’s cane.
Now, the new generation might not be familiar with corporal punishment, however even still it wouldn’t be very difficult to recount your own instance of getting punished by your teacher in some way and form.
Another area where I felt that the book was good at was creating very vivid visual scenes within your mind while reading.
Whether it is his classroom shenanigans or college stories, like the one time when Somany and his friends bunked classes and wound up at the same eatery as one of their professors. Or perhaps the time when Somany and his friends Hirjee and Mitra decided to go on a hunting crusade, unsuccessfully I might add.
But all these and more stories are very easy to imagine and perhaps the best part about all of it is that the book is actually quite simply written.
You can easily see that this is no hoity-toity writer, using over complicated words, or describing a cloud for 4 paragraphs.
No, Somany is crisp and precise in his descriptions and you jump from one chapter of his life to another with a seamlessness that is seldom there in non-fiction.
That is why I would like to repeat my earlier point that, for me, someone who generally shies away from non-fiction for the reasons noted above, this book was quite different, pleasantly so I must add, in its simplicity.
I don’t think there were any mehs in relation to the story itself, however. I just felt that for the young generation it might be difficult to connect to some of the areas that Somany himself feels missing today.
Also, another area that I felt was a bit problematic was that certain points during the book, I worry that the young and impressionable generation could take the wrong lesson and use it in a manner that the author does not intend to promote.
And the 3rd point, although it is more just a personal quirk and might not be a problem for all, is that the stories within the book seem to jump a bit quickly at times and seem to be almost left in the middle.
In a single chapter only, Somany recounts more than one story and many times I was left feeling as if the story he was telling was not finished and that in turn gave me an unsettled feeling.
In conclusion, I would say that overall this book is not a bad book at all. The few negatives that are there can easily be overlooked as some rookie mistakes and even with them, the reading experience is not affected very drastically.
I believe this book is a perfect insight and look into the life of a corporate giant who rose from a humble beginning, however, did not let them define him.
If one wants to get a read into the life of a big-shot in the corporate world, who create a brand that is known country wide and wants to do something similar, then this book is definitely a read.
Simple, short and crisp, it does not run overly long or bog you down with unnecessary details.
Written by a true corporate person who gets down to business without any flowery overlays.
Amazon book page link: http://bit.ly/BringingTheRainbow
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.