‘Take Me Home’ – Stories of 20 Small-Town Entrepreneurs Who Made It Big by Rashmi Bansal: A Review

Take Me Home: The Inspiring Stories of 20 Entrepreneurs from Small Town India with Big-Time DreamsTake Me Home: The Inspiring Stories of 20 Entrepreneurs from Small Town India with Big-Time Dreams by Rashmi Bansal

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I will start with the things that put me off about the book. 1) Titles to each entrepreneur’s story is that of songs that you have probably listened to death when you were in school including the title of the book. A little imagination would have been nice especially considering the titles most of the time did not connect in anyway to their stories. 2) Several careless grammar and spelling mistakes, editor at fault there. 3) A very Delhiised Hinglish which I guess is attractive to mainstream urban Hindi speaking audience. 4) Casual casteism and patriarchy, which again is common to most English bestsellers in India, but then again, this book doesn’t pretend to be an anthropological study of business in India anyway. 5) Inconsistent research. I can understand the need to gloss over nuance to appeal to a mass audience but the unnecessary details into the inner workings of solenoids and hi-tech machinery while being very casual in explanations of politics and economics of various states wasn’t great. 6) I also got the impression that the author had a predetermined narrative in mind for small town entrepreneurs and was trying to fit the stories into that than let the individuals unravel themselves.

So, why did I rate 3 stars ? It brought together stories of some very inspiring people. Also ashamed to say I only knew 3-4 people out of the 20 which is probably why I bought the book in the first place. In many ways, Rashmi Bansal is the Chetan Bhagat of non fiction, but I actually learnt something, so maybe she is not.

Edit: The last interview is with Sanjay Vijayakumar of MobME. The transcript of the interview in the book is suspiciously similar to an interview that he gave to a local Malayalam channel in February 2013.

View all my reviews


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