By Kartik Iyengar. Grade B.
It sounded like a cool book – a few ‘morons’ are abducted by an alien race called the ‘scrotum heads’ (*cough*) and they are entrusted to save the world from doomsday. Kartik Iyengar and his friends undertake a fun-filled and eye-opening journey across the length and breadth of India. Full of pithy Facebook slang and humour, the book would be an ideal beach read .
Fast-paced and irreverent in tone, Horn Ok Please: Hopping to Conclusions is a fictionalized account of an all-India road trip that three friends; Chief Redbull, Goose Goldsmith and Derek Demonia, embark on their SUV, Motormouth.
The no holds barred cross-country road trip that these daredevils undertake, forever changes their perception about India and Indians.
Kick-starting from traffic-congested Bangalore, to sailing through the coastal beauty of Kanyakumari, to cutting across Rajasthan’s deserts, till their slow ascent to Leh’s picturesque panorama, the ‘morons’ do it all. The crowning glory of their journey happens when they meet His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
Peppered with Facebook slang and tongue-in-cheek humour, the narrative is rich with sharp and witty observations of a prosperous country called India 2.0.
We have Chief Redbull, the author; Goose Goldsmith, a photographer; Derek Demonia with no purpose in life,; Hound Hitchhiker, an NRI trapped between his wife and muse looking for an escape and their SUV Motormouth. The four are on their road trip and there have an additional duty of saving the world from doomsday and finding their destiny.
Exciting so far. HOP: The scrotum scroll has a crossroad. HOP is better than many comic adventures we have because it avoids a rhetoric story map and really brings out an innovative approach. There is this elaborate scene in the book where all four morons are flying in space in a transparent saucer, drinking, smoking with alien race called scrotum heads, tripping on the tunes of Metallica and thinking about having alien sex. It’s epic. A few more scenes like this and the book would have broken records.
It genuinely feels like the author has brought your teenage lazy summer-noon fantasy alive in a novel. But when the scene ends, so does the awesomeness of the book. It is both a surprise and a disappointment at the same time. Surprising, because Kartik has managed to squeeze out some entertainment, and disappointing because sometime in an attempt to make your adrenaline rush, the book actually reaches out to your face and slaps you hard and then cuddles you innocently. Read it if you’re looking for something fresh and drastically out-of-this-world crazy. Otherwise, don’t.