The 365 Days by Nikhil Ramteke – Book Review

The 365 Days



his is a story that falls through the crevices of pitiless anonymity, yet miraculously waits to be told.
Shijukutty, a Malayali fisherman, leaves his tiny hamlet of abject poverty in the coastal village of Vizhinjam on the outskirts of Thiruvananthapuram, the capital city of Kerala, that picturesque vignette of searing beauty on the southwestern coast of India. Shiju, like millions of other Malayalis, seeks his destiny in Dubai, that gleaming global hub of fortune on the southeast coast of the Persian Gulf. What unfolds is a stirring story of distilled hardship, exploitation, identity, and friendship, and the heartbreaking choices Shiju is often forced to make. So what he sees is not what he experiences when he lands in a world of glimmering towers, fast-paced life, and unabashed opulence. For what he was not prepared for was the dark underbelly of Dubai beyond the shimmering mirage.

Shiju’s life is no more the same. But he holds his ground, drawing on ancient instincts of his seafaring ancestry. As things settle down around him, he is inexorably pulled into the canyon of recession…
Will Shiju be able to hold on to his dreams? Will he able to pull out himself from the whirlpool? Will he survive against all odds? Will he redeem himself?

Nikhil Ramteke unfolds an extraordinary saga about Indian expatriates, their struggles, their alienation, and their dreams. The 365 Days is more than a story of a year in Shijukutty’s life.

Book Review:

The 365 Days is a story of the struggles and aspirations of present times where we all aspire for a better and comfortable life. The protagonist of the story is a humble fisherman who leaves his native land in search of better prospects. But many a times we tend to forget the truth that grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. It’s only when we cross the border, we come across the atrocities and struggles.

This is a tale of Shijukutty, a Malayali fisherman, who leaves his village and lands in the Gulf region. It’s only when he reaches his dreamland, he comes face to face with the challenges that await him. It’s a saga about Indian expatriates, their struggles, their alienation, and their dreams.

I found the plot as well as the theme quite refreshing and different from the other novels. It captures the real struggles of people living and working abroad for livelihood. This makes the story relatable and captivating. One can easily relate to the emotions presented in the book. A lot of research has been done to pen the story and the author’s effort definitely deserves to be applauded.

The characters are well- developed and are relatable. The author has been successful in reflecting various shades of human emotions through them.

The narration is very good and language is simple.

Overall The 365 Days is a well- researched book in which the author has presented and amalgamations of dreams and the struggles faced by an individual to fulfil them. The lifestyle and culture of Kerala’s coastal belt has also been captured beautifully. The book is a light and interesting, one time read.


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