Anusual by Anu Aggarwal – Book Review

Anusual: Memoir of a Girl Who Came Back from the Dead

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Anusual is the story of Anu Aggarwal, the dusky Delhi girl who went to Bombay and became an international model, and then a star with her very first Bollywood movie, Aashiqui, only to chuck it all up and join a yogashram. Coming back to Bombay, she was involved in a horrifying car crash that put her in a coma for twenty-nine days. Miraculously, the girl who broke into a million pieces recovered, and put the pieces of her life back together, first taking sanyas and then returning to Bombay to teach yoga. This fascinating story of a woman’s self-discovery, a near-death experience and amazing recovery is told in a straight-from-the heart, unbuttoned style, including details of the men in her life, from millionaire jet-setters to super yogis. In the end, as she says, love is all there is.

Book Review:

Year 1990. The whole nation was blown by the acting skills and sultry beauty of debutant actor Anu Aggarwal. The Bollywood had got a new star with the film Aashiqui directed by Mahesh Bhatt, Originally from Delhi, Anu Aggarwal had shifted her base to Bombay and became an international model of fame. Later on she shot to fame with her very first Hindi film Aashiqui. The damsel-in-distress looks of this dusky beauty pulled the strings of every heart and she became a rave not only in India but across the world. But then, leaving everything behind, this model turned actor joined a Yogashram.

Anusual is the fascinating story of Anu Aggarwal and her self discovery after coming back to life from a near death experience due to a horrifying car crash in the year 1999 that put her in coma for 29 days. The story tells about her miraculous recovery and her determination to put the pieces of her life back together. She took sanyas after the incident later coming back to Mumbai to teach yoga.

In the book, Anu Aggarwal recounts her life from Delhi as a Social Worker, her journey of becoming a super model and later a super star in the tinsel town Mumbai followed by Hollywood and French films. But this book is not only about a celebrity film star. It also talks about her spiritual engagements and a strict and disciplined life in an Ashram in the Himalayas that she embraced leaving the stardom and glamour of Mumbai, her encounter and recovery from a fatal car accident that nearly took her life. After she emerged from the crisis, she went back to where she began. Now Anu Aggarwal is adding more meaning to her life everyday by working with the less fortunate people of the slums of Mumbai and teaching Yoga. She has also talked in details about the men in her life.

The book is written in a matter-of-fact manner. It could have been inspiring for many who are battling with the tragedies of life. Instead the book turned out to be a self praising, over narrative memoir of a person who is all praise about her success in the past and the ease with which she could leave everything and her triumph over body and soul.

I had picked the book expecting a lot from it but was disappointed with not only the content but also the writing style of the author. The excessive self appreciation makes her sound arrogant. Also when a popular Bollywood actor writes a Memoir, one expects some interesting stories and anecdotes from the industry which are totally missing. The book lacks depth with an overdose of description of men in her life. What could have been a great creation spreading inspiration to many, has turned out to be a self obsessed autobiography. All in all an average read.

Buy Anusual: Memoir of a Girl Who Came Back from the Dead from Amazon

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