Train journeys can be life-changing sometimes.
On 7 June 1893, a young lawyer Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, despite having a valid ticket, got thrown out of a train compartment because he was not white-skinned. We know the station where he was evicted was Pietermaritzburg in South Africa. The train journey is considered a catalyst for Gandhi’s ideas of Civil Disobedience and Satyagraha.
Much like the eventful and significant train journey that Santosh, the protagonist of the book we’re showcasing today, takes. Santosh is all set to travel alone from Mumbai to Kolkata during his holidays by the Howrah Mail. He has a secret plan in mind: to meet his Baba, who has been long-separated from his Ma with whom Santosh lives in Mumbai. Of course, Ma hasn’t the faintest idea about his plan. The train journey brings Santosh in contact with people outside his familiar world. It opens his eyes to a life full of possibilities despite the odds. Above all, it shows him that growing up is just a train ride away!
Winner of the Bal Sahitya Puraskar 2010, Mini Shrinivasan’s ‘Just a Train Ride Away‘ is a sensitive coming-of-age novel that will have readers believe that the journey of a thousand miles begins with the first train ride 🙂