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Book Review: Don’t Disturb the Dead is the closest look you’ll get at the other side of Bollywood

Most books that allegedly tell the story of a celebrity are drivel. Self-aggrandizing, mock self-deprecating, ‘look at me, I am opening up, give a damn’ kind of books. There is a market for those books.  They have a PR Jamboree that consists of your favorite stars plugging that book on their Twitter, Insta, Facebook or whatever have you. Websites dust out their most educated journalist to cobble together a review so they are connected to the book.

Then there are books that drive to tell the real story. These books plan to give the audience the story behind the celebrities, the humans behind the names. Unfortunately, the media jamboree doesn’t hold these kinds of books dear. There’s always the danger of such books not reaching the kind audience. ‘Don’t Disturb the Dead’, unfortunately, is a book that posts a most realistic picture of their subject – the Ramsays. That’s the precise reason you should grab this book as soon as possible.

Shamya Dasgupta handles the Indian Film Industry like what it is – a business that’s based on creativity. That is something that many authors his age would find hard to do. We live in a ‘wow celebrity’ world You won’t find passages that talk about the subject’s struggle with creativity, their penchant to put across a point or how they brought their struggles to an end by making a picture out of it. No siree, what you do get is a clinical, earthy story of a family that stood through thick and thin and made films that inspired an entire generation – and continues to do so.

The book has several interesting anecdotes and information. Like, did you know that The Ramsays had decided to make an Indian version of the Spielberg classic ‘Jaws’? Or that most of their films were shot in Matheran and Mahabaleshwar?  Then, there is this phase in the book that tells us which Ramsay movie made the most amount of money for them and which didn’t. All this is a dream come true for a film historian.

What also keeps your attention is author Shamya Dasgupta’s writing style. He has a sharp writing style that holds your attention and keeps it to the subject and not at the words and phrases and all that.

Shamya’s writing style and the subject matter seem to be married to each other. It allows the reader to savor the incidents and the information, rather than marvel at the writer meandering a carriage of words and sentences through the valley of prose or something.

Indian Readers can buy the book here. People in the US can buy the book Don’t Disturb the Dead: The Story of the Ramsay Brothershere.

 

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