I need to first thank RM for the book 🙂 She gifted it to Daughter, and then told me to read it first, because her mum said it might not be appropriate for a 6-year-old. Am I glad or what? I might have ended up not reading the book if Aunty hadn’t said that – and what a loss that would have been! RM, thank you 🙂 and thanks to RM’s mom 🙂
Mayil is a spirited, 12, going on 13-year-old girl. Full of life, opinions, witty, mischievous, she just cannot be quiet. Mayil dreams of being a writer when she grows up – Mayilwriter, and her dad gets her a diary to practice her writing in and to try and be quiet.
‘Mayil will not be quiet’ transports you into the life of a pre-teen, in today’s world, which while being similar in emotions and feelings that we had while growing up, also has today’s distractions and problems that a child might face. Mayil’s sibling rivalry with her brother Tamarai, her love-hate relationship with him, her mother and father’s parenting styles, teenage emotions, crushes, friendships and disappointments – what a read it was. Mayil is smart, sensible, sensitive while being naughty, trying to test her boundaries when she can, even though she knows she shouldn’t be doing it. In other words, a normal pre-teen/almost teen. She was smart without being patronizing and understanding – her jottings on her grandfather’s love for her grandmother are so touching, and the way she over hears parents discussing a serious issue, and tries to do her bit, without making them aware that she knew. I wished I could hug her then. It took me back to my childhood, and in a way prepared me for whats coming up for me.
All the characters are fantastically etched. While I loved Mayil’s character, I just adored her mum. Such a sensible, pragmatic lady, and such a role model for Mayil. I especially loved the way she parented Mayil. Sensible, gave her space and was around when she needed her. So many issues that were brought up and addressed in a wonderfully sensible way. There was no shying away from issues like gender discrimination or sex education. The book was completely devoid of gender stereotypes – loved it! Mayil, also packs in a powerful punch, and Thamarai likes dolls – and why not! The best part was that the book really does feel as if it were a diary written by a 12-13 yr old. It feels so natural, not a note out of sync.. The illustrations were super cute too.
If I have a problem with the book, its just that it ended too quickly. The book left me yearning to know what happened next 🙂 I can only hope that they come out with sequels, because, I for one, haven’t had my fill of Mayil! Probably one of the very best books I’ve read in recent times. One that both children(above the age of 10 perhaps), and grown-ups can enjoy in equal measure – that’s not easy to achieve, is it?
Just have to add -Mayil and Thamarai – such imaginative names! Can I say that I loved the book – just one more time? Can’t wait for daughter to grow up to read this book!