Love lost and found
As ambiguous as the title may sound, Adite Banerjie’s No Safe Zone gives a lot of rough ideas about the banalities of life. It sends out an idea of this world being a place with absolutely no zone that could be termed safe. But then amidst all the dangers and atrocities in life, there are places that can act as a shelter for you and there are people who are always there to cocoon you in spite of all the hardships that they face in life. Banerjie’s No Safe Zone promises one such soulful journey of love, danger and the discovery of the safest zone in the world.
Kabir Shorey and Qiara Rana quite perceptibly snatch the protagonist’s title in the novel. London-based Qiara heads for India in a quest for Ranveer Khanna-the business tycoon, who is considered responsible for the investigations that had been carried out at Girls Rock! - The NGO where Qiara works. As planned, the meeting with Khanna did take place but was followed by a lot of unplanned incidents- Ranveer Khanna’s murder, to name a few.
The story, by and large, revolves around Khanna’s murder and surprisingly that is also when the romantic angle of the story kicks in. Qiara bumped into her long lost lover Kabir Shorey- an IB officer while trying to escape the gunman who was chasing her. Qiara and Kabir had an unpleasant parting story, where she accused him of leaving her all alone years ago.
That wasn’t the only time when she was chased, right from New Delhi to her journey till Jaipur, she was chased a bazillion times because she had the most important evidence that would reveal all the details about the slain business tycoon and his connections with various other absconders who were yet to come under the police’s scanner, and it was Ranveer Khanna’s tablet that she had accidently tucked into her bag while escaping the crime scene. But every time danger hovered over her, her knight-in-shining armour stood with his arms open to save her from all the miseries and shield her from all the on-going dangers. The romantic encounters between Kabir and Qiara were quite invigorating.
The constant sense of denial intertwined with longing doubly enhanced their romance and the passionate love that flared up in spite of all the previously nursed disappointments, was quite like the icing on the cake for the romance-hungry readers.
Banerjie very carefully deviates our attention towards the most sensitive and inevitable issue of `child trafficking’, that has prevailed over time. The small incident in `Garima Nursing Home’ where the nurse tells Qiara about the `Baby Bazaar’ and how the whole act of selling and buying babies was being carried out, triggers up a lot of untouched matters that didn’t receive the kind of attention it should have got from the government and the people who take care of these consequential matters.
The buying and selling of woman, girl child has been into practice since the time immemorial to all of us. Even the protagonist was later discovered to be a victim of `child trafficking’. In her quest for Reshma, she discovers the story of her own life.
Mowed down by the wrath of her past, she finally decides to escape the place with claustrophobic realities but is again kidnapped by some darker forces only to drown her in the new set of discoveries.
A lot of time while reading the book, you would fight back the idea of reading a Bollywood based story. Not once but many times, you would find a lot of incidents relatable with your favourite Bollywood movies and it is not because there is any similarity but because of the way the plot progresses.
Kabir’s heroic entry into the place where she was held captive, to the even more dramatic exit. His rescuing his lady love quite literally on a horse to the grand surprise that he plans for her in his Gurgaon home would definitely ignite the Bollywood junkie in you.
A great read to satisfy your need for a book that gives equal importance to the two most important genres: Romance and thriller, without overdoing any of the two. One would definitely not like to miss the moments of pleasure between the two protagonists!