Pyjamas are forgiving: Twinkle Khanna’s third book
October 1, 2018
The only reason I ordered Twinkle Khanna’s third book ‘Pyjamas are forgiving‘ online in haste, was because a friend had sent me a message saying that the protagonist in this book was called Anshu! Else I would have waited to pick up my copy when I was next at an airport or a railway station. But Amazon delighted me by sending me an author-autographed copy. This book is a novel unlike her previous book ‘The Legend of Lakshmi Prasad’, which was a collection of short stories.
The novel ‘Pyjamas are forgiving‘ starts with Anshu reaching Shanthamaaya Sthalam—a spa and Ayurvedic resort in Kerala. The lady who is in her forties, has paid a rich sum to register for a 28-day detox regime to reduce her parasomnia at the spa. Her doctors try to reduce the imbalance in her doshas at the spa through a series of treatments (which include making her ingest puke-inducing medicated ghee mixed with cow’s urine), bland unappetizing diet and yoga. She encounters and makes friends with other visitors to the spa. Trouble brews when she discovers that her former husband Jay has also checked into the same spa with his new wife, Shalini. Jay’s unexpected presence with his young wife causes Anshu’s hormones to run helter-skelter. Encountering a previous partner keeps pushing both Jay and Anshu to revisit their pasts, which is simultaneously traumatic and reflective. As a board in the spa proclaims: “In order to find yourself you have to leave the world behind”. Does she finally find the answers to the peace of mind that she is seeking?
‘Pyjamas are forgiving‘ is a quick leisurely read—the perfect book to pick up when you are travelling— not too cerebral. Anyone who has been following her newspaper columns knows that Twinkle Khanna is capable of finding humour in everyday things and that her writing is refreshingly original. But what makes this book interesting is her ability to weave a warm story with her deft use of words and poignant emotions. Her characters are human, flawed and real. She has an eye for detail, her words are insightful and wise, and the images she creates are vivid. I must admit it was unnerving for me to read my own name again and again. But I did enjoy her language, the use of novel Indian metaphors and the way the story moved back and forth in time, pausing to introspect about actions and behaviour.
She is no pushover and is definitely here to stay. At least she is far better than several ‘best seller’ male authors who are selling trash and film scripts without any ability to write. This is Khanna’s first novel and I do look forward to more of her refreshing, honest and warm writing.
(‘Pyjamas are forgiving’ by Twinkle Khanna, 2018, Juggernaut Books, Rs 325, 220 pages)