Wednesday 14 March 2018

I Owed You One

I Owed You One by Dr. Madhu Vajpayee is a gripping story of a young man, his family and friends.
Protagonist Dev Khanna is happy, secure, and well-settled with his pretty wife, Radhika, and his little son, Neel, at Australia. All is fine until the arrival of a letter to his Melbourne home. He is forced to revisit some painful memories of his life in New Delhi and Moradabad, India.
"Sometimes pain is the only thing that defines your existence, yet it's you who has the power to decide its imprint."
The letter spurs Dev into action mode that surprises even him and the people, who know him closely.
Though he had decided never to do so, yet he finds himself on a mission to 'return the favour'.
Who has sent the letter?
Does Dev succeed in repaying his debt?
Why does he owe the favour?
Whom does he owe the favour?
Why doesn't Dev heed to the requests of his family at Melbourne?
What costs does Dev have to pay on his journey to settle everything?
Are there really debts and credits in this world?
I owed you one

I Owed You One has been commendably penned by author Dr. Madhu Vajpayee. As "the writer in her was born somewhere in those hospital corridors where she has spent the last two decades of her life", Dr. Madhu has included some dedicated doctors as important characters in her touching story.
The characters in I Owed You One are impressive. Dev Khanna's mother, Nayana Khanna; Dev's wife, Radhika; Dev's host, Mr.Goyal; Dev's father's friend, Mr. Kapoor and his driver Shahid etc. all have been well-described.

But, most of all I loved the hero of the story, Dev Khanna.
Dev pursues Chemical Engineering as he loves the subject as for him, "passion is more important than fashion". Dev has the guts to stand up for what is right- whether in his dealings with his parents or outsiders.
His love for his mom is exemplary. He understands that "her distress and agony need to be respected and offered space and understanding". He keeps his Mom's instructions & memories alive.
  "When you want to do your duty wholeheartedly, the way is automatically paved for you."
Apart from loving his mother, Dev deeply loves his motherland too. Staying away from motherland, rouses this question in him, "Why can't I pay back my debts to my country?"
Dev is conscientious, alert, caring, doting and comes across as a smart and suave down-to-earth thinking man. Despite possessing some great qualities himself, Dev makes mental notes to learn the amazing traits of others!
A reader may ponder about some points- a few questions that remain unanswered/hazy, but can perhaps be answered. However, some glaring spelling and grammatical errors are a distraction. These need to be taken care in the next edition of the book.
The Bollywood fan in me would love to see a movie based on Dr. Madhu Vajpayee's I Owed You One. The movie script can be fine-tuned to address the queries mentioned above. I enjoyed reading the story and I even imagined which Hindi movie stars would be suitable to play the roles!
Ending this with some quotes from the book:
"Perhaps it's better to be oblivious to the truth so as to be able to believe in facade."
"Even phenomenal amount of wealth doesn't guarantee any security against unhappiness."
"One always picks the best while shopping, if arranged marriage was indeed a kind of shopping."
"It's easier to deal with strangers. You don't have expectations, you don't have disappointments either."  
"The responsibility of honouring the relationship lies with the person who had stakes in it and not with any other person." 
"Our attachment to people or things increases exponentially if we realize their transience."
Book: I Owed You One
Published by: LiFi Publications Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi, India
Author: Dr. Madhu Vajpayee
Genre: Fiction / Family Life
Pages: 258
Price: Rs 275
This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now!


  1. An interesting review on the book written by Dr Madhu Vajpayee and the background seems intriguing. Having read her first book, I am sure this one does justice, too.

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