Rudra’s father is very strict with him and has an unorthodox style of waking him early and is perennially angry with him for not agreeing to go to U.S for higher studies. His mother is his only support system at home.
He works as an Assistant Director for a living. In the last 6 years, he has worked behind the scenes for various directors without any sight of growth. Although, he always wanted to be in front of the camera, an actor, but his handicap of stammering fills him with self-doubt and he never really works on his dream as he knows that becoming a successful actor is next to impossible for him.
The insults are common for him on the sets. Everyone makes fun of his handicap and other A.Ds often make him the scapegoat. Yet, he loves being on the sets – the energy, the work, the process, gave him a purpose.
He meets Richa, an event manager, at one of her organised marriages and they instantly hit it off. He loves being around Richa and feels a different energy within whenever he is with her. He likes that she never reminds him of his handicap and accepts him like he is. When he is about to propose to her, she dumps him for a well-settled match searched by her parents for her, citing his unstable career and no aspirations as reasons.
This break up leads to depression and he finds solace in alcohol. His father tolerates his tantrums for a few days until he has had enough and throws Rudra out of the house for being a Devdas and says not to return to his house until he has become something.
So, dumped in love, thrown out of job, thrown out of house, without major savings, even losing the borrowed money and full of alcohol in his intestines, he hits rock bottom. That’s when Devika, a bar dancer, gives him a helping hand.
How Devika helps Rudra and how his fortunes turn overnight forms the crux of the story.
The writing style is smooth flowing and lively that one can easily finish off the book in one sitting. Just like his other two books, I am M-M-Mumbai is a mixture of light humor, romance, aspirations, handicap, heartache and success followed by a very Bollywoodesque climax.
The love story with Richa is a very sweet angle which is smile inducing. The break up is predictable and so are the reasons. The author nicely adds a closure to the chapter in the climax.
There are various references to contemporary actors and producers which are hard to miss. Again, just like Hifi In Bollywood, you get a glimpse of all the people involved in the process of movie making and various stages through which a film goes before it actually hits the cinema halls.
There are various instances which are hard to believe and you go like, “Hey, it doesn’t really happen in real life!”
But then, it is called fiction for a reason.
Also, Rishi puts up a nice plug to his own debut novel in this one with Rudra’s second film being Rail-Man, an adaptation of Rishi’s debut novel Once upon the tracks of Mumbai.
In a nutshell, I am M-M-Mumbai makes up for a light-hearted feel-good read.
Connect with the author here : Rishi Vohra