Writing a book review is a task in itself, I feel so fortunate to chat, draw on the specialized knowledge of the writer and finally get a chance to do a review. This book grabbed my attention, the main character shares the name with my daughter, “Alizah Rizvi”, what a coincident, this review is being published today and it’s her birthday too. Love you Alizah, proper and shine.
People face different challenges in life and sometimes need the inspiration to keep them going. Various uncertainties come up in life while we are caught up in the expectation of something better.
Since life challenges are inevitable, people have no choice but to hang onto hope that someday, they
will make a breakthrough. The story of Alizah as narrated in ‘The Light in Blackout’ is a symbol of
hope that every aspiring reader needs to go through.
Alizah’s events in the book are so emotionally amazing that no part of her life is left untouched.
The author gives a prologue of the book, giving readers a captivating introduction to the novel and
also introduces some of the characters giving readers a glimpse of what the story entails. Dr. Naqvi’s
writing style uses flashbacks, vivid description, dialogue, and suspense. Uncertainty gives readers the
urge to know the next event pushing them to read further. Dr. Naqvi uses suspense in different sections
of this book, creating eagerness in the reader to find out the content of the next chapter, to answer
some of the itching questions and uncertainties and the turn that the novel might take.
Flashback has been used by the author effectively to unveil the past events that help in building up the
story providing information about the characters involved in the tale. For instance, the author takes the
readers back in time when Alizah was just a little girl, going around the happy moments of her life,
around her loving family. Beginning from Alizah’s childhood, days spent with her parents, siblings
-Amna and Arish, her best friend Meera, storytime with neighborhood grandma, the opening chapter
provide a perfect foundation and starting point for the book.
The following chapters bring out Alizah’s character, capturing her friendship moments with Meera
and Arish. Dialogue between characters gives the readers a hint of the challenges experienced by
Meera. The author uses the beginning chapters to pre-empt the upcoming battle in Alizah’s life. For
example, in a conversation with her mother, she seems genuinely concerned about her pet rabbits and
enquires from her mother why some rabbits never seem to come out of their dark burrows. The
mother vividly replies, ‘when it decides to come to light, it will! It will not matter then, how long it
has been in the darkness’.
As the story moves forward, Alizah’s picture-perfect childhood is suddenly transformed into a
difficult one when she gets diagnosed with epilepsy. While she struggles hard, dealing with the
enormous physical and psychological turbulence caused by the condition, she captivates the readers
with her strong-willed personality that is determined to persevere. However, the tough times and her
uniquely negative experiences circling around people perception, social stigma, doctor’s attitude, and
medical reports leaves her affected. The bright, bubbly and ambitious girl seems almost beaten down
by untimely seizures, enveloped in negative thoughts discouraging her from visualizing and chasing
her dreams. After reading, “The Light In Blackout”, author Dr. Farah Naqvi is assured of the top place among the best writers of her generation.
The author briefly portrays the teenage life of Alizah, where she discovers her fears and strengths. My
favorite lines from this chapter are the piece written by Alizah in her diary that she writes after putting
up a small act of courage.
“You cannot impair my dignity
You cannot hurt my pride
You can only stare at me but cannot influence my ride
I may pretend not to hear but,
I will not let you feed on my fear.
I will continue to soar and,
If needed, I will roar.”
Dr. Naqvi takes her readers through Alizah’s adolescent years, where she meets her favorite teacher
and a very compassionate neurologist. Their words of encouragement and faith in her abilities provide
Alizah with the much-needed motivation, and she strives to attain the best version of herself. When
Alizah leaves her home to pursue her MBA, she encounters newer challenges in life. She struggles to