Book sheds light on cancer survivors

Book sheds light on cancer survivors
Rafees with a copy of his book Nellikka.

Sharjah - Rafees Maranchery has penned Nellikka, based on bittersweet real-life incidents and characters


Ashwani Kumar

Published: Sat 4 Nov 2017, 8:19 PM

Last updated: Sat 4 Nov 2017, 10:24 PM

An Indian expat is shedding light on the lives of cancer survivors through his book at the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) 2017.
Rafees Maranchery from Malappuram district of Kerala has penned Nellikka (Malayalam for "gooseberry") based on real-life incidents and characters. "I grew up in Maranchery village, which has a high incidence of cancer patients. I wanted to raise awareness about cancer care through this novel, which is my third work."
The author's works are also influenced by his nine-year stay in the UAE. "I was in Ras Al Khaimah for two years. I got cheated in my job and had a miserable time. The bitter experiences made me write a blog and eventually led to the novel Parajithan ("defeated")."
For the last seven years, he has lived in the UAE Capital and is now an employee of the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) Logistics and Services.
Rafees has an interesting take on the title of his new 170-page novel, which has introduction written by Kerala Assembly Speaker P. Sreeramakrishnan. "A gooseberry tastes bitter at first bite, but when you swallow it or drink water, it turns sweeter. Similarly, you face bitter experiences in life, but it is when you fight through those stages that you truly enjoy the taste of success," he noted.
"In the novel, a gooseberry tree is an important character and mirrors the changing phases in the life of female lead character, and hence the title."
The characters have been picked from from the people Rafees met during his travels. The male protagonist is a character from Abu Dhabi. "The real-life cancer survivor is now leading a successful life in India. My male lead who helps the cancer survivor is a real-life Abu Dhabi resident."
There 3,500 free copies of the book up for grabs, at Saikatham Books stall at the fair and another 500 at the Indian Islamic Centre Abu Dhabi. The book is also available online for free download.
"Even if one person gets inspired by Nellikka, it will be my sweet reward," Rafees signed off.

More news from