Thursday, July 14, 2005

Christina Rosenthal

This is my effort to simplify Archer's greatest short story...
Christina Rosenthal: A short story from Jeffrey Archer’s ‘TWIST IN THE TALE’
She came into his life like a breeze, taunted him, teased him and showed him heaven. He was in bliss, shocked at the unmeasured love she showered upon him. Everything just seemed right, he proposed to her, she said she wanted to marry him and all of a sudden one fine day she left him. Her parents forced her to leave him; she married her parent’s choice while she bore his kid in her womb. He was devastated, sank into the deepest realms of depression. He worked harder and harder, got every award, every scholarship and earned every accolade that life could offer him. Yet, he was so lonely and dismal, for her love haunted him. He would sleep with every girl he desired, but they were just objects of lust, love wasn’t an emotion he could associate with these objects of desire. He felt an abyss building inside him, his loneliness compounded by his social status.
He saw her again, many years later, crossing the streets, his son besides her walking into a cosmetic store. Life took another turn at him; she left her husband to come back to him. He got her back but lost his son to her former husband. Love bloomed for him again; she was finally there for him, right next to him, where she always belonged. His happiness hit the roof as she became pregnant again. On the day of her pregnancy, he paced anxiously to and fro at the hospital. The doctor opened the door and informed him that Christina was dead and that the child was still born and that she had been warned about consequences of her pregnancy. Lost in desperation, with the love of his life dead, he killed himself...

28 comments:

Oyster said...

robbie.
tragic. nicely summarized. ty :)

cosmicblob said...

Robbie

First - Great idea of summarizing a book - I have totally lost my reading habit - and if you continue to do this, I will happily read your summary and be content :)

About the story itself - yes tragic - but its a story of attachment more than love. Attachment causes suffering because we cling to things which by their very nature must eventually pass away. The guy clung on to the lover rather than love itself. That said, it is probably not easy to separate one from another...and by the way I am no expert :-)

kaleidoscope said...

Robz, nice summary.

CB i too feel the same way i.e hard to separate love and lover, one personify's the other doesnt it??

ROBBIE said...

Cosmic:
I think that I have successfully managed to convert one of the most romantic short stories by Jeffrey Archer into a totally non romantic one. haha! That was not the idea though. The idea was to make people read this particular short story. I have many memories associated with this particular book... It makes me nostalgic, takes me to my college days...

Kali ma: Read the story please! I dont want to destroy it by my version, read it and you will thoroughly enjoy it. This an oversimplified version

Oyster: Tragic indeed! There are so many twists in this tale, read the story when you get a chance.

Mumbai Ramki said...

ROmbe va intresting ana story thaan :)
Innum koncham crime matter serthu iruntha ,pramathamma irunthu irrukum :)

Oyster said...

cosmic ,tragic that she dies during delivery and so does the baby.

Oyster said...

ofcourse him too.

sen said...

Robs,
The baby dies??.I thought that the baby was born and this story was the extention of your previous post.

Arvind said...

Robbie,

Looks like spoilers are out there, so i skipped reading the post !

ROBBIE said...

Senthil,
the baby dies, this is a short story by Archer, I just oversimplified it, thats all...

ROBBIE said...

ramki: You should ask that question to Jeffrey Archer, Its just my stupid experiment...

Narayanan Venkitu said...

Tragic..! Superb work to summarize it.!

Let me check it out in the library.!

Venky Krishnamoorthy said...

Hey, Is this a good book? Would you recommend it?

ROBBIE said...

Venky,
It is a great collection of short stories,You should definitely read 'A TWIST IN THE TALE' and 'QUIVER FULL OF ARROWS' both these collection of short stories are awesome!

ROBBIE said...

Narayan:
After you read this book do not forget to write a poem. I am sure you will come up with many after reading it. I am eagerly waiting for another one of your diamond coated pearls :P

Raman said...

Robbie,
Very nice summarization. I think this was written before the days of genetic testing. Else, the lovers would have gotten the custody of the first child and possibly the mother would not have taken the risk of another pregnancy.

Of course, I am not sure if it was just pure uncontrolled lust or the yearning to have a child for themselves that forced her to ignore the warning about the consequences of her pregnancy.

Going back to Senthil's point, it would have made greater sense for them to have adopted a kid. But, then, we all are selfish in some way or the other, aren't we :-( And the short story would possibly have been lesser tragic and popular if it had ended that way. This ending keeps it dramatic!

ROBBIE said...

Raman,
The first husband agrees for the divorce only when she promises to leave him her son. Thats the reason why she leaves him her son. Her lover becomes excited when she becomes pregnant for the second time, and despite the doctors warning she goes on to concieve it at her own cost... for his happiness. She also feels that she owes it to him coz she left him in the lurch the first time...

ROBBIE said...

p.s. It is also part of 'TWIST IN THE TALE' for the dramatic ending for when we all expect that things are going to turn out better for him... he dies!

Anonymous said...

Robbie-

Speaking of Archer's short stories, an unforgettable one for me is from "A Quiver Full of Arrows"...it is somewhat similar in that it is tragic...the name of the short story is "Old Love"...I first read it at the recommendation of my cousin (dunno if she remembers it though!!)

- Aarthi

ROBBIE said...

Aarthi,
I have read old love, its a very cute love story, I somehow found it less tragic than this one. Atleast there they live a contented life together, this one is more tragic and full of twists.What is striking about old love though is that you can relate with the lovers and feel their love growing, it is a very cerebral form of love...whereas, this one is for simpletons like me...

Balaji said...

first time here... nice summary of a great story...
i recently bought the collection of all 36 of archer's stories from 'twist in the tale', 'quiverful of arrow' and '12 red herrings'. one of my most cherished books :)

Fathima said...

Oops! I like Jeffrey Archer's writings. I must read this. Thanx for the summary.

Anonymous said...

I had to read this story for English and I really enjoyed it.

Anonymous said...

just imagine benjamins state of mind while writing the letter to his father just before killing himself.Absolutely devastating story and I somehow get a feeling that this is a real story.

Samplitude said...

The baby doesn't die! It's the mother of the child that does.

Read the text properly - and you will understand!

Anonymous said...

truly the most fascinating story I have ever read. emotional read

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Anonymous said...

the baby is not still born!!...she dies a day later