The Boy Who Loved – Book Review

I always preorder Durjoy Datta’s book’s and The Boy Who Loved was no different. However, I really wanted this book to be better than his last two books – The Girl of My Dreams and Our Impossible Love, both of which I had not liked at all. Before I begin with the review, I just want to let you know that this one was different.

Title: The Boy Who Loved
Author: Durjoy Datta
Publisher: Penguin Random House India
Date Published: May 25th 2017
Language: English
Number of Pages: 280
Genre: Romance
ISBN: 9780143426578
My Rating: 4

The Boy Who Loved is an innocent love story at its core.

The book deals with several issues, which I would discuss later, but at its core, it’s still an innocent story of love. Raghu is a suicidal teenager who feels that there is nothing remarkable about his life. He is intelligent and one of the toppers of his class, belongs to a middle-class family, has an elder brother to whom he looks up to and plans to study in an IIT college. Anybody would feel that he is living a perfectly normal life. However, deep in his heart, he is grief-stricken with the death of his best friend, who drowned in the school’s swimming pool.

He hides himself from the world, seeking it to be a fair punishment for him and keeps away from making friends or being social. Things turn around when he finds Brahmi, a girl who is exactly like him, but still so different. Even though he never wanted to, he falls for her and there begins an innocent love story that witnesses the cruelest turns as the story progresses.

It’s not just a love story.

The Boy Who Loved contains several elements and social issues that are plaguing our world even today. They are showcased into the plot primarily through the cultural differences. Raghu’s brother loves a Muslim girl and eventually marries her, which brings in the family hatred, the religious differences and consequences people face even today. I keep saying the book tells a story of 90s.

It’s not the only barrier. We witness all the events through the eyes of Raghu, who is a student studying in the tenth standard. We acknowledge how the hatred for other castes or religions is forced down the throat of a child when he is too young or naïve to understand. Eventually he grows up to be the same as his parents. We come across the struggle of a lover who wants to marry outside his religion, but his parents disapprove of the same.

On the other hand, we have Brahmi, who is a victim of physical assault and has to go through a painful ordeal later in the book. You will have to read The Boy Who Loved to know more, because posting more would be spoiling it.

Durjoy Datta has nailed it with The Boy Who Loved.

He is popular for writing young-adult romances, but with this book, he has tried changing his style. The Boy Who Loved is quite realistic on several grounds, some of which I have already discussed above. At times it goes over the top, but if you read news articles, it is not hard to digest.

The book, written in the form of letters penned down by Raghu, moves swiftly through a-few-less -than 300 pages. I’m sure if I had enough time, I would have finished it in a single go. The characters are realistic. I’m not sure if Thirteen Reasons Why is responsible for bringing the cause of teenage suicides into the spot light, but I’m really glad people are writing over it. It can actually help you understand when needed.

I absolutely hated Raghu’s parents and the hatred kept getting stronger till the climax of The Boy Who Loved.

Did you know that it is the first part of a duology?

If you haven’t read the blurb, you might wonder at the end. I quickly searched on Google after finishing the book and found relief settling in when an article assured me that this is just the first installment.

The climax of The Boy Who Loved left me shattered. “Why?” was all I could think of. I did not want it to end on such a sad note, but was it necessary? Although, I don’t know what Durjoy Datta has in store for the next installment, but I will be waiting eagerly.

I loved reading The Boy Who Loved

While I was reading the book, it felt like the good ol’ Durjoy Datta is back. The emotions seemed authentic and the words flew; I couldn’t keep a track of time while reading. It had a lot of different flavors. While being a love story of two teenagers, it had dark turns and moments that made me feel disgusted at how we have so much hatred filled in our hearts.

The only problem I had with the book was a lot of typos/ grammatical errors/ print mistakes. Apart from that, I’m happy that Durjoy Datta has finally written something a lot of his fans will appreciate.

‘It’s a long story.’
‘We have time,’ she said.
‘It’s depressing.’
‘We are no strangers to that.’

I have tried to rationalize my love for someone who might be a little – how do I put it politely – unhinged, by saying I have the capacity to love anyone, but it’s not that. I know I just love her and I love her no matter what.

What’s wrecking my heart is not Brahmi’ s coldness towards me but her unwillingness to come clean and tell me it’s over, that she feels nothing for me. At least then I can start mourning and make a fresh start. I just need to hear it from her.

I realize that what I feel for you is stronger than what you feel for me. And that’s okay by me. You’re you , you know. Like only the best possible girl ever, and I am me. Even I wasn’t prepared for what I felt about you. I can’t do this to me. I have to stop thinking about you.

And of all the people I don’t miss, its’ Brahmi. I don’t miss her voice, I don’t miss her touch, I don’t miss her presence – yes, I don’t miss her at all. And why will I miss her? It’s not as if I think she was a part of me. It’s not as if the last few days of my life have been spent in abject despair, or as if I have spent every waking minute reliving everything that we shared, everything that seemed real and true and everlasting, or as if I have mourned the loss of every possible future I have seen with her, or as if sometimes the pain is so hard to bear that I fiddle with the paper cutter.

Buy The Boy Who Loved



Anmol Rawat

Anmol Rawat is a writer, which, considering where you are reading this, makes perfect sense. His debut solo book ‘ABCs of Horror’ is a collection of 26 terrifying standalone tales. He thinks Game of Thrones and Supernatural are the best TV series ever made and devours on Nicholas Sparks, Dan Brown, Stephen King & John Green. He would kill for a good cup of Cappuccino, as should all right thinking people.
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