01 October, 2015

#BookReview :: It Doesn't Hurt To Be Nice by Amisha Sethi

Kiara is a dynamic, thirty-something girl who has reached great heights professionally, and is the apple of the eye of everyone who knows her. But she never took any short cuts to become happier, wiser, healthier and more compassionate.

She had to find rays of hope where the dark tunnel seemed unending, and identify shade in life's burning path. She found little pearls of wisdom in chasing her dreams, in spreading laughter, in learning from scriptures and philosophers, and even at one point in almost ending her life.

More than Kiara's story and wisdom she achieves through the various dramatic and hilarious experiences, this book is a motion picture with you in the lead role. You as the 'hero' who can beat the most stubborn villains - most of which lie deep within us... our fear, unkindness, selfish interests, negative thoughts and jealousy. You as the 'heroine' who is sharp and witty talking, selfless and caring in love, and charming and a beautiful inside out, like none other (perhaps a 2.0 version of you).

Walk with Kiara to find a better you, because It Doesn't Hurt to be Nice.

It Doesn’t Hurt to be Nice is a ‘different’ sort of a book. Though it is meant to be a sort of a self-help kind of a book, the lessons are dealt out in part fiction. Each chapter has some illustrations, some life lessons and then those lessons imparted through the experiences of Kiara – a fictional character. While the lessons in each chapter is something new and different – from the joy of giving to being kind to others, to mastering your fears to the art of detachment to mastering your thoughts, the common theme throughout the book justifies the title ‘It doesn’t Hurt to be Nice’. It is clear (from the book and meeting the author at the book launch) that Amisha Sethi has been studying the scriptures from quite some time. She often quotes them to make her point shine through. 

The reason why I do not usually read self-help books is the fact that every person’s life is different and each individual reacts and handles situations differently. I find it really boring to read ‘guidelines’ from an unknown person who knows zilch about me and my life. Instead, I like to learn from my own mistakes or from watching others handle situations. As such, the instances of Kiara’s life, even though she is a fictional character, attracted me more than rest of the parts. It was easy to imagine Kiara as a real person and learn from her experiences just as she learnt from them.

As a self-help book, this one really stands out because of two simple things. First being the inclusion of Kiara’s fictional story that is not very common (or at least I think so – sorry limited knowledge of this genre). Secondly, the author has dealt with some very basic concepts that normally a person would think that they know about. Yet the book will atleast make you deliberate upon these points and maybe even reflect upon some past events to see and realise how things could have been handled differently. The author has kept her narration, in all parts, simple which made it easy to read. However, I found the illustrations in the book distracting and a bit off-putting. 

Review Copy received from Srishti Publishers

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