Review of Kerala Hugged by Ankur Mutreja

Review of Kerala Hugged by Ankur Mutreja


(This review was first published on the Facebook page of the book ‘Kerala Hugged’ on 30.12.2016 and is being reproduced here today)

Kerala HuggedShould an author write a review of his own book? Why not if he is willing to highlight just the negative points, esp when he has read the book hundred times and self-edited everything. So, I do hereby review my own book.


A travelogue just can’t be created without pics, and I was so complacent that I thought I would describe it all in just words. Thankfully, the jogging in Kochi gave me the confidence to take selfies from my modest MiPad, which turned me into a serial photographer by the end of it. But, of course, the photographs are not very professionally done, and I admit it. I think Kochi portion is completely devoid of photographs and Varkala is the best of the lot, for by then I had intuitively started combining my narrative with photographs.


I think I have tried to add subtle humour, but I am not fully satisfied with it. It should have been loud enough for the general audience to consume it. At present, it may not appeal to all.

Style of Writing

Though I don’t feel the style of writing is immaturish, but I do feel it is highly unconventional. Furthermore, I have digressed a lot from the main narrative many a times. I would like to disguise it as philosophy, but the reader may just find it boring.


To be very frank, I am a man of few words, and that gets reflected too prominently in the book. Indeed, there are so many places where a few lines more wouldn’t have done any harm. On reading the book as a neutral audience, I can easily feel few subchapters should have lasted longer, esp in the Kochi section: Love Jehad (there was a plenty to write about that girl), Kalari (I just needed to surf a bit of internet to add more), Payyipad (I needed to discuss the organization of the event more), etc.

Complaint Emails

Well…the emails are there just because I was frustrated for not being able to do anything. But I am not sure whether an author should let his emotions run over his writing. Thankfully, I have added the emails verbatim in quotes, which the readers can just ignore. Also, I have been a bit too harsh to that poor Pandian. Of course, I don’t want a poor guy to lose his job.

Maps, Directions, etc

Strictly speaking, I am right in not mentioning details like directions, attractions, food, geography, etc, in the main narrative as the book is not a travel guide but a travelogue. However, I think the practicality demands a compromise. People generally don’t understand the fine nuances between a travelogue and a travel guide. Moreover, when so many travel bloggers give all this information free on their blogs, the people deserve it in a travelogue too. I have added some information in appendix, but I am not sure how much does it satisfy the need of the readers.


OK. Now my book has lodged a complaint, so I am stopping. I am giving myself a neutral 3 star rating.

Book Link:


About the Author

Ankur Mutreja
Ankur Mutreja is an advocate-cum-writer, and his blogs are amongst his modes of expression. He has also authored six books: "Kerala Hugged"; "Light: Philosophy"; "Flare: Opinions"; "Sparks: Satire and Reviews"; "Writings @ Ankur Mutreja"; and "Nine Poems"; which can be downloaded free from the links on the top menu.

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