Contemporary Literary Review India | Print ISSN 2250-3366 | Online ISSN 2394-6075 | Impact Factor 8.1458 | Vol. 9, No. 3: CLRI August 2022

Book Review On G. Venkatesh’s *TILL DEATH DO US REUNITE *

Dr Anmol

“When Life challenges you, it throws many curveballs and googlies at you one after the other or even simultaneously”

Till Death Do Us Reunite is a poignant memoir written by G. Venkatesh where he describes how his valiant wife, Varshita struggles with the incurable cancer in an unequal combat. Varshita was just 41 when cancer hit her; she decided to struggle first then submit. This memoir is really a true gratitude and earnest exertion on Venkatesh part to keep his words; he promised with his wife, Varshita. The memoir instigates from the International Women’s Day on 08th March, 2019. Varshita has been working in Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim (Norway) since 01st January, 2019. The first sign of her ailment is noticed in the evening of 7th March, 2019 when she forgets to respond on the waiting-guests, whom she called on for supper. Consequently, she is admitted to St. Olav’s Hospital. The author at that time lives in Karlstad where he teaches at Karlstad University (Sweden). He leaves for Trondheim after getting the news of her sickness and thereof admits.


The memoir reflects the series of dreadful emotions and sensations that the author goes through. He realises the bodily pain of Varshita, fails to cope with things. Departure from beloved one is more agonizing than of other afflictions. Every page of the book is ebb-tided with emotions and the fear of losing her. Their tenacious bond goes on blossoming with the advancement of the saga. The author throws back and remembered the golden moments he had with Varshita. They had wonderful time embodied in the secret of love and care for each other. Apart from this wonderful bonding, the author also tries to exhibit parallel relationships of Varshita with friends and colleagues that show that she had great quality to reach and win others. This virtue brought her a galaxy of friends around.

Varshita was inching her way ahead with what she had been left to rejoice. The author always looks for chance, how to make her forget about her disease and sufferings. The author remembers many odd moments where Varshita remained ardent to stand with him in his thick and thin. The memoir shares many scenes from Hindi movies to elaborate the situation more clearly and effectively. Varshita was shifted to the Oya Health House for palliative care as she was feeling extremely disturbed and uncomfortable. The author wanted to console her and wanted to motivate her to see the positive side of the things but at once he realised how empty would be his words in front of her. Sometimes life puts us in more complex state of affairs just to test our potency and vigour. More examinations mean more experience; more experience means more wisdom. But love neither comprehends wisdom nor mellowness; it requires sentiments, feelings and concern. It nourishes on emotions and care; care from loved one.

Varshita was well connected with the author; this was her only strength to face the imminent moments in time. She was well prepared to life as well as to her approaching bereavement. The author was well aware of the fact that he would not be able to save her from the clutches of melanoma but he was left with no other choice than of waiting for her death. This was the most painful thing on the Nature’s part; when one is unable to find the way, the solution and more over the answers even after knowing all the realm and veracity. It shows that we all are puppets in the hands of Almighty; we have no control over our destiny and on our stars. But we remain tied to a hope that sustains us in the upsetting waves of time and situation. Our hands, lips and mind engrossed in prayer to God; but no change in situation ultimately leads us to the climax of faith and devotion-

I cannot forgive God for what He is making you go through, baby.

I do not mind if people tell me that this a blasphemous and dangerous

statement to make. (P.65)

Varshita was retained for a long in Oya Health House followed by Chemotherapy. Soreness and suffering of departure inflicted twinges in both; but both had equivalent stand- only for the sake of love. The author wished to take all her pains and disease on him if it miraculously happens. But no ray of hope, no such wish to be granted by the Almighty- where to find all the answers, all the solutions. Oncology is a complex field but not more complex and knotty than human destiny and fate his sentiments and feelings. The memoir is under the profound influence of oriental beliefs; their love is unconditional, strings attached indeed much more cherished and prosper than of bodily love. They were soul companions, made for each other; they lived together, rejoiced together and wanted to go hand in hand on this journey beyond life. Their coming departure was their pain, their suffering- they never wanted to leave each other in desolation and despair.

William Shakespeare wrote, ‘ Our wills and Fates do so contrary run, that our devices still are overthrown; our thoughts are ours, their ends none of our own.’ More waves of distress with intense multitude were proceeding towards them. Her health had been deteriorating day by day; she was not able to stand and walk by her own. Things were more perceptible and apparent, more unbearable to Varshita as well as for Venkatesh. Her appetite was conspicuously shrinking, not able to eat solid food. Then came the moments, she found it difficult to breath in. The spiritual Varshita had embarked on her heavenward journey.

‘Weapons cannot shred the soul, nor can fire burn it.

Water cannot wet it, nor can the wind dry it.’ (Chapter 2, Verse 23)

About the author


Venkatesh Govindarajan is currently Associate Professor at Karlstad University in Sweden. He has two Master’s degrees (Mechanical Engineering from India, and Industrial Ecology from Germany) and a PhD in Industrial Ecology (from Norway). He speaks, reads and writes English, Norwegian, Swedish, Hindi, Marathi and Tamil. Venkatesh has published four volumes of poetry, four e-books , and over 100 scientific journal publications; crosswords, and articles of various genres in magazines around the world.

About the reviewer


Dr. Anmol is presently working as a Lecturer in English in the Department of Higher Education, Govt. of Himachal Pradesh, having more than 9 years of experience in teaching. He has attended several workshops on Literature & Languages and presented his research papers.

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