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Once Upon An IAS Exam Paperback – 20 Oct 2018
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Some books win you over with their sheer relatability and simplicity, and Once Upon an IAS Exam is such a book. You feel like you were once Vishy, juggling between running the rat race without becoming a rat. We have all been or known someone like Rithika, the pillar of support for Vishy and dealing with taking their relationship beyond friendship. We have all known or perhaps been one of the superbly crafted supporting characters. The author is a serving IAS officer, and that brings in a ring of authenticity to the tale that comes through on every page. Well worth a read and drives a very strong and relevant message that passing in life does not only depend on passing entrance exams. - Mainak Dhar, bestselling author
About the Author
Dr K. Vijayakarthikeyan is a medico turned bureaucrat currently working as commissioner, Coimbatore Municipal Corporation, and is the youngest ever officer to have held this charge. He is well known for his hugely popular initiatives as an IAS officer and has won several awards and accolades for his pioneering work in land, solid waste and urban management. He has authored three Tamil bestsellers-Ethum Doorathil IAS, Adhuvum Idhuvum and Orey Kallil 13 Maangai. On sunny weekends, he can be found wreaking havoc on the cricket ground with his explosive batting and deceptive spin.
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The story is written in a simple but lucid way. The plot is pretty straightforward. Vishy is an Engineer aspiring to become an IAS officer. The story begins with him failing the first level of the exam and hence began his journey to study to clear the UPSC exams. Whether he clears or he faces a disappointment read the book to find out.
The plot is very straightforward, although I expected a few twists n turns, though not many of those. The characterization is vivid, Vishy is very lucky to have very supportive family n friends. Rithika his girl friend is very likable character. Vishy's friends are like all other friends from college, funny, helpful n hardworking.
The pace of the story was a bit slow but even.
The things I did not like about the story is that it was pretty straightforward with not many racy moments. I was surprised that I couldn't find even a single person who was negative. The drama quotient was low.
All in all a one time read to enjoy a few hours. It could be those light reads we pick up in between heavy reads.
If you are a young college student preparing for any entrance exams then this could be a very interesting to you. Do pick this one up to relax in between your hard gruelling studies and it will surely cheer you up!!
This book is actually a cherry on the cake, when you are trying to gain help from all the self help book, and need some more motivation in you, to learn how to balance life in the most perfect way. Sometimes where self help doesn't help, fictions can help you certainly. Sometimes. Not all the times.
The story of the book begins with Vishy, who has failed in his UPSC preliminary exam first attempt. The exam, which was the first built-in step towards his dream, couldn't be passed by him. At this stage, many people break, stops walking the steps towards their dream and starts exploring something new. Many of us do this. But Vishy is exceptional. He regained more motivation and continued towards his dreams.
By the love he falls in love with Rithika, who becomes the sole support system in every single path of his life. Love, relationship didn't affect him anyhow. He becomes more confident for having the love, the support with him. Vishy had a big dream of clearing the UPSC, but he didn't consider it to be a 'Life-death' situation, rather he considered it to be a part of his life, where he had to give his best performance.
The story tells about the whole journey of how Vishy makes it through the end of his destination of conquering his dreams, with balancing every single thing in his life so perfectly. Love, parents, friendship, rest, health. Obstacles came, situations acted against him sometimes, but how he made it through with the coolest mind.
What I loved about the book:
1. The author expressed so perfectly, the scenario of this kind of Tutorials, which prepare students for competitive exams. How in the name of selection, they actually made study a form of business.
2. It has also been described how many kind of students comes in the exam, some people who are forced by their parents, some just with a dream to clear , but they don't do anything to make it happen.
3. The love story of Rithika and Vishy was short with no cliche. It showed how much you can be supportive towards the person you love, when he or she needs it the most.
4. **Spoiler Alert** I loved the part of the world cup finals, and the references of M.S.Dhoni.
What I didn't like about the book:
It doesn't matter whether you are a UPSC aspirant/ CAT aspirant/Engineer/ Doctor, you should read this.
My rating: 5/5
After failing on his first attempt, Vishy now joins coaching classes to help him prepare for his next attempt. Vishy is now helped along his journey by his parents, his friend and love interest Rithika, his friends and teachers of his coaching classes.
The story brings to life the numerous pressures faced by the aspirants to attempt to clear the UPSC exams, one of India’s toughest exams. Will Vishy be able to withstand the pressure and crack the UPSC? The reader needs to read the book to find out.
If you are looking for a breezy and light read, I will certainly recommend this book to you. People of all ages can certainly understand and enjoy the book.