Witch at the Pond is a collection of short stories - with each story being based on real life incidents. After reading the book, you would be surprised to know that it has been written by a first-time author.
What I absolutely loved about the book is that each story attempts to convey a message, but it does so very subtly. So subtle, in fact, that each reader might perceive it in a different way. This, I believe was intentional and I know for a fact that it is extremely difficult to achieve.
Then there are the descriptions! Few of the stories are set in a village where I hail from. While reading the descriptions of the places, festivals, countryside, temples, houses, I could almost see them in front of my eyes. The author transported me right to my village. The surprising part is that even for a person who might never have visited the place, the descriptions hold an equal amount of interest. The author sort of immerses you in all that attention to detail.
This is not to say that the book is only limited to rural life. Nope. There are stories from the corporate world, board meetings, bus journeys, business schools and everything in between. The point, here, is that each incident reflects a different aspect of the author's life and experience.
I particularly enjoyed the humor in some of the stories. I found myself grinning like an idiot while reading the book in a bus, eliciting strange stares from co-passengers.
All in all, Witch at the Pond reminded me of my favorite short stories book - Wise and Otherwise by Sudha Murthy. Now that is saying a lot!
At the price point that it sells, this book is absolutely a steal. Witch at the Pond is a must-read.