Manjari Shukla
HOUSE OF CARDS by Sudha Murthy, presents a simple straightforward story with which one can connect so justly. Mridula, the female protagonist from a small village takes us to her world with so much love and admiration. The feelings and emotions which she undergoes, never appears to be exaggerated or made up, they are so real and worldly. Sanjay, her husband, who once showed tremendous faith on her and believed in her being, gradually loses all hope in her, and gets himself so much engrossed in the world of wealth. Their child Shishir, on the track of his dad, starts neglecting and taking for granted the woman, because of whom he has a being, in this world. Mridula becomes a constant sufferer at the hands of husband, son and relatives; and to top it all, she one day realises that she is being financially cheated by the one, she has given her entire life to. She is heartbroken, and decides to leave the place, leaving everything behind, and going to Aladahalli, the birth place of hers, far from the madding crowd of Banglore, where she spent almost 25 years of her life , with her husband and son. The heartbreak of hers soon starts to heal when she being in an optimistic note starts living her life in Aladahalli, and one day, when realisation dawns on Shishir in England about what a woman is, and how she should be treated, the child calls up the father, to make him realise the fault he is committing, no matter whatever be the reason. Sanjay realises the shortcomings, with which he met Mridula, an able- woman in all respects twenty five years ago, and still she accepted him with no expectations. He feels ashamed of himself and decides to apologise to her leaving behind his ego, which was always bragging about this or that. The novel ends on a reconcialiatory note where Sanjay realises the fault he has committed towards the woman who actually made everything for him and their life together, leaving aside all her personal aspirations.

The significance of the title can be interpreted in such a way that, life is more or less like a house of cards, so delicate that it can be blown to pieces, just with a spurt of air. The relations we make in life are like threads which should be well protected and taken care of; any relation, if taken for granted collapses like a house of cards. What Mridula built with utmost love reached a point in her life where her Self was being questioned, there was no way out, but to leave the abode which she made with so much affection and care, but what is said, that good deeds never go in vain; in the end, the realisation dawns on Sanjay, that how much Mridula is important for him and his family. The novel ends when he comes back to her in Aladahalli, so as to reconcile and mend everything, which broke because of his negligence and “taken-for-granted” attitude.

A wonderful read, and something with which one can connect effortlessly.
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