• Carlos Luis

Book Review: 'WHAT SHOULD I MAKE?' By Nandini Nayar



Naming a prize, Dumbstruck, A good decision, Lighting up the world, It’s a long wait, Sharing a seat and many more short stories by Nandini Nayar have struck a chord in young minds. Nandini Nayar has been cautious of her surroundings that she hasn’t missed describing the society and culture in her work of art.


Nandini Nayar in the book “What shall I make?” has exactly tried to satisfy the reader i.e. a kid of 3 yr+ by telling the story of a boy Neeraj and his mischievous experiments with the dough that’s given to him by his beloved mother.


The manner in which Nandini Nayar has endeavored to get into the character of Neeraj is incredible. She has been able to describe what a three or four-year old child would do if she / he would be given a piece of dough, thus in the book she shows how Neeraj in all his innocence, with the dough goes on to make a snake, a mouse, a cat, a lion and the best chapathi that he himself had never ever eaten.


The illustrations by Prioti Roy look economical but they invigorate the mind as and when a child just sees them. One can imagine what she/ he reads.


The author has invariably won the hearts of the young Indians by taking something that is really sure to happen or has happened; she has not just satisfied the reader of making a chapathi but also learning how to make it.


Nandini Nayar has also used “repetition” for certain lines to create an effect, this makes it more interesting and comical. For instance, after a creation made with the dough by Neeraj the mother says, “Roll it up, quick, quick!”, and the following, Neeraj’s question “What shall I make?” before making a mouse or a cat etc.


The immediate scary Neeraj’s yell after the creation is catchy and wonderfully done. Nandini Nayar has done justice to her creative art.

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