Of Marriages and Madness by Sacheth is a collection of eight short stories revolving around “marriage” and the “madness” married life brings. Instead of painting a rosy picture, the author has explored marriage with a realistic lens.
A Settling of Accounts—The first story, and one of the most interesting ones is about a couple, Tiya and Sapan. Tiya wishes to drive her own car and be more independent. Unfortunately, her husband is not quite encouraging. Tiya is persistent in her efforts and feels she might be able to convince Sapan to get her a compact hatchback. Her endeavours result in an unexpected end.
It’s a well-written story, and the ending is a wonderful twist.
The Spark—Ipsita and Arups story is a redeeming story of a couple who are the exact opposite of each other and now feel the spark is missing from their lives.
Though the storyline was intriguing, I found the pace a bit too slow for my liking.
Neighbours—Sana and Karan are a young couple living in an apartment. On a Saturday night, Sana invites the narrator to their house. What follows is an evening of drinks and long forced conversations until an unexpected event occurs.
I did not enjoy this story as much as the others in this collection. The open ending and lack of a strong premise left me wanting.
Mornings—This is an extremely short story and yet leaves a mark.
Of Marriages and Madness—The lives of two couples are interwoven in this story. The story begins on a regular evening when Mihir and Aditi, a married couple, have invited Ved and Sejal, a yet-to-be-married couple, to their home. Mihir narrates an interesting story, a story of marriage and madness that leaves Ved in turmoil.
This dark story talks about the unpleasant truths of marriage that are generally brushed under the carpet.
The Callback—The story of a middle-class family who is trying to find an alliance for their daughter.
This is my favourite story from this collection. The story is realistic, high on emotions, and well narrated. I could visualise the characters and felt as if I was witnessing the story from close quarters.
All of My Love—A story with two parallel inter-woven timelines. The author highlights the emotions of a protagonist dealing with a broken marriage.
A Responsible Man—In this story, the wife comes face to face with her husband’s actual personality.
The premise is something we have heard often, but the treatment and conclusion added a unique blend to the narration.
Sacheth has done a wonderful job of exploring various dynamics of married life. The stories are realistic, relevant, well-written, and varied in terms of topics. He has addressed domestic violence, controlling spouses, lack of spark in a marriage, the stress of an arranged marriage, and much more.
Though most of the stories are well written, a few stories had underdeveloped characters and their traits could have been explored in-depth to leave an ever-lasting impact on the readers.
Of Marriages and Madness is a remarkable debut and I look forward to reading more from the author.
Wordsopedia Rating 4/5
|Title: Of Marriages and Madness
|Publication date: 31 July 2022
|No. of Pages: 112
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About the author
Sacheth is a postgraduate in Creative Writing from the University of York, UK. He loves reading and writing fiction of realism, magical realism, and mystery genres. He is also a technical communications professional, and he has authored numerous technical publications for multinational companies.