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Dreams don’t catch fire

Dreams don’t catch fire
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Remember your graduation days, all the fun, escaping the punishments, bunking with friends and late night dorm studies? Yes Dada by Vibhor Tikiya will take you back to your golden era.

Dada, is the guy your parents warned you about when you were joining college. He is the quintessential ‘bad influence.’ And this is the story of a young boy from Kolkata who did fairly well  in his studies, was loved by his father, adored by his mother and also has a sharp brain.

Life takes a turn when his father dies unexpectedly in an accident.

From there on, he barely manages his studies and in an attempt to support his mother, he masters the art of manipulation. He scores 45 per cent in his 12th standard examinations. But his mother dreams of seeing him studying in one of the premier engineering institutes of the country.

Being the manipulator that he is, Dada forges a few certificates to get admission in one of the best colleges of the land. Surprisingly, he gets in and from there on, his life revolves not around studying, but making money, selling alcohol in the campus, bartending, copying and so on. He forms a gang of four, Vivek - the geek, Divya - the beauty with brains, Jhon - the good for nothing and Dada himself. The story revolves around these four friends and their (mis)adventures through the glorious years in college.

All four of them look upto Dada in times of trouble. It is evident that Dada’s adventures tend to succeed most of the times as he has nothing to lose. He has incredible negotiation skills, he cares about his friends and though he is reluctant to change and try new things, but he does chart fresh waters after a bit of motivation from his friends.

It is how they handle several tricky situations, pull strings and finally manage to get an engineering degree forms the core of the story.

By the end of the college years, after fulfilling his mother’s dreams of getting a respectable degree, Dada realises that he doesn’t have a dream of his own so he sets out to fulfil his father’s wish of becoming a teacher.

The second half of the book is set in US where Dada has joined an engineering firm to complete his PhD. After failing the first few exams he changes his department and moves to fine arts. Story unfolds from there on...

The book talks about how a person grows up by making mistakes, laughing and crying with friends, trying to fulfil responsibilities. But at the core its message is clear ‘Properties catch fire, Dreams don’t.’ However, it does leave you with some questions.

How do you handle challenges presented by life and people around you, as it determines how successful you will be. Can you confront a challenge, or do you plan to run away from it? Do you succumb to your fate and adjust to it? Learn to deal with challenges well and you'll enjoy the same.
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