Unit cohesion - the bond between soldiers that reinforces their dedication to their mission and each other - is a goal of all military leaders. But desire and reality don't always converge. The collection of disparate soldiers in Joydeep Roy-Bhattacharya's novel The Watch is recognizable to many: disenchanted with their mission, they question their leader's decisions. But when a legless woman appears on the perimeter of the base demanding the return of her brother's body, she becomes the unlikely catalyst for an evolution towards a state of unity. Stranger things have happened in war. Never mind that this story has been told before; Roy-Bhattacharya's offering is based on the Greek classic Antigone (see 'Beyond the Book'), with perhaps an unintended nod to Herman Wouk's The Caine Mutiny, but his rendering is as disturbing as Antigone and stands as an original itself.
Nizam, an ...
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