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Along the Way: As you unearth about Self-love and Relationships — by Shreesha Khare

Publisher: Notion Press
Price: Rs. 99 INR(paperback), Rs. 100 INR(Kindle edition)
ISBN: 978–1684667697
Buy here: https://amzn.to/2Y4KIjy

We believe that happiness and love is moving to the next place, the next job or being with the next partner. But, you will never find happiness and love anywhere until you get uncomfortable with the differences in people and be selfless with your needs. Be more of a giver than a taker. Amelie’s disappointment with herself and the imperfections around her led to the path of self-love. Love is when someone else’s happiness is more important than your happiness.

Self-love is not selfish unless and until you don’t show it to others. Loving someone unconditionally is about serving the needs of those around you or the person you love. Love is about affection, compassion and empathy. Amelie needs to stop looking for perfection and focus on building a solid relationship with herself first and only then can she bond with others and help them.

Her relationship with Peter and Steve in different situations made her understand that ‘me’ is not important. The ‘other’ is what is important in any relationship we hold with people. She understood this by indulging in a relationship with herself. It will make us uncomfortable but that will give us autonomy from everything.

Amelie understood that love is a choice, a deliberate action and not a feeling like visitors — they come and go but what stays is love. It will free us. It is attachment that binds us. Love means growth, commitment and staying strong and being grateful in life no matter how grave situation may be.

Everything starts with us first, and only then can we welcome the differences in the world and the people. Real love involves being uncomfortable.

Get ready for the uncomfortable journey of Amelie…

About the author:

The author is an avid reader with gratitude for others and has a love for learning new things. She has the good habit of meditation, followed by exercise before bath, which helps her maintain the mind-body balance.

Passion never fails, and it is this passion for writing that helped her to bring out the writer in her. Change is what keeps her going as it is the only thing that is constant in the world. Compassion for others is what drives her purpose.

My take on the book:

Amelie meets Steve by chance and then gets an offer to work under him while interning briefly with the organization where Steve works. Amelie finds the perfect mentor in Steve who guides her and helps her in quickly learning the tricks of the trade. Amelie’s enthusiasm and interest to learn new things also helps her along with the perfect guidance from Steve. But before they both can take this mentor-mentee relationship further, Amelie travels to The United Kingdom to pursue her higher studies. Only after moving away from Steve does Amelie starts thinking more often about him and questioning her feeling and thoughts for Steve.

The new place brings Peter into Amelie’s life who becomes her best friend, starting from helping her adjust to the new place, to completing study assignments together to going around the place when feeling lonely. While it looks like Amelie is lucky to have people like Steve and Peter in her life, what destiny has in store for Amelie only unfolds as the story progresses. Are love, life and friendship as simple as they seem on the surface or is Amelie up for more challenges and tests is what forms the rest of the story.

As the title suggests, Along the way is about Amelie’s journey and what she learnt along the way, about self-love and relationships; About her relationship with Steve and Peter and with herself as well. At 80 pages, the story is crisp and precise to the point without unnecessary drama. However, the shorter length also turns out to be a disadvantage as more conversations between Amelie and Steve could have added strength to the narrative and to their characters. Amelie and Peter’s relationship in comparison has more conversations and depth. Also, the editing could have also been better as the author narrates the first half and Amelie suddenly starts narrating the second half.

The author gives a nice message around relationships and love and how they are practically experienced versus how they are generally perceived. However, the author could have executed the story better while relating the concept at hand to the fictional story weaved around it. Pick this one to get a different perspective on relationships, those with our loved ones and those with self.

My rating: