Mukul Kumar is a bureaucrat, novelist and poet. He belongs to the 1997 batch of Civil Services. An Indian Railway Traffic Service officer, he is presently working in New Delhi. He has studied Humanities at Delhi University, and Public Administration at Indian Institute of Public Administration, New Delhi. He has been honoured with the National award for outstanding service to the Indian Railways.
His written works include two novels, ‘As Boys Become Men’ (Rupa, 2016) and ‘Seduction by Truth’ (Bloomsbury, 2018), and two poetry anthologies, ‘The Irrepressible Echoes’, and ‘Catharsis which has just been published. Mukul Kumar has been honoured with Bharat Nirman award, 2020 for literary excellence, and Poorvanchal Gaurav samman, 2019.
AARZOO-ARAHAN is Mukul’s third fiction.
As Boys Become Men
Freedom, friends and fun. That’s how most of us remember our college years. But for those studying to get into the coveted Indian Civil Services, college life acquires an additional layer. As Boys Become Men revolves around three such boys, Mihir, Uday and Sandeep, who set out together to crack the Civil Services exam. Narrated by the thoughtful and intense Mihir, this book explores college life, friendship, romance, leaving home and adjusting to a new environment, and describes how negotiating the path between dharma and desire, love and lust, can be tricky.
A sparkling story of the bond between a boisterous trio, the book will take you on a journey of discovery, where boys become men, and students become civil servants. In the course the book also ends up telling us what not to do when writing the Civil Services exam. A slice-of-life tale with a ‘Mona Lisa’ flavour that offers fun and romance aplenty, this book also imparts philosophical truths that will help every young person out to discover life.
Seduction by Truth
Shiva is handsome, an irresistible talker, well-off, lives in Delhi’s poshest suburb, is a dutiful husband to the attractive Akriti and is a perfect father to their little son. So why is he the picture of disenchantment?
Is it that not-so-uncommon human condition-boredom that sometimes accompanies fidelity-that haunts him? In Shiva’s case, the discovery that Akriti has already found distraction with someone else frees him to look for excitement on his own-but with a mind conflicted between dharma and desire. Which is the path that he will choose to walk on?
Shiva embarks on a journey to empirically explore different options-the sexually vibrant Sana and Mary, to name a few-but at the end, winds up with more questions than he started out with. To confuse things further, Akriti continues to occupy a tender place in his heart-as a woman first and a wife later.
A slice-of-life tale, which is part reality and part legend, Seduction by Truth dares the modern reader to solve civilization’s oldest puzzle-marriage.
Aarzoo-Arshan: Can One Hate Love?
Romance, feels our anti-hero Arshan, has potentially hazardous dimensions—or at least hazardous to him, because he is an unfeeling love-them-and-leave-them young man, a flirt to the core.
Arshan- a neuroscientist-in-the-making- has been blessed equally with swank, good looks and a carefully concocted object of fascination to women, and cursed with a life-long hatred of commitment to any. When love comes to him in the shape of Arzoo, a shy, smalltown girl with big-city dreams, he thrusts it away with unspeakable cruelty. When he is unable to get over the love in him, he resorts to even more desperate measures—mainly, creating a potion that will ensure his continuing desire for ‘chicks’, as he dismissively calls them, and the ability to walk away from them without looking back.
Aarzoo-Arshan is a psycho-romantic thriller, an unusual tale of love, lust, obsession, ego, jealousy deceit, and revenge with a gripping suspense.