Book on Rajnikanth to hit stalls soon

The book, The Name is Rajnikanth, is a biographical sketch of the southern megastar and reveals many unknown facts about the life and films of the southern screen icon.
By Shweta Thakur | IANS, New Delhi
UPDATED ON FEB 21, 2008 01:21 PM IST

Megastar Rajnikanth was a spoilt brat when he was five-years-old, bullied people when he was 10 and tied cycle chains around his neck at 20.

All these and many more aspects of the southern screen icon's life will be revealed in a new book that will hit the market in the first week of March.

The book, The Name is Rajnikanth, is a biographical sketch of the southern megastar. Supported by nearly 100 pictures, it has 384 pages and costs Rs.495.

"He was very naughty and used to bully people. Rajni, along with his friends, used to play marbles and if anybody else other than him won the game, he used to beat him up," author Gayatri Shreekanth told IANS.

"He used to walk very fast and his friends complained that they could never match his pace. My book encompasses thousands of such interesting details, which his fans across the globe would love to read, since no comprehensive book on Rajnikanth's life has come so far," said Shreekanth, an ophthalmologist by profession.

And what prodded the author to write a book about him?

"I have been enamoured with the actor for a long time. In my first year of MBBS, I had once attempted to write a book on him. But I dropped the idea thinking it would be too immature.

"But in March last year I realised the right time has come to pursue my dream. I took a break from medicine and started working on the book.

"Another reason is that there are so many books on the north Indian counterparts of the star like Amitabh (Bachchan) and Shah Rukh Khan, but none on the southern stars," said the 34-year-old writer from Chennai.

Shreekanth, who has been working on the book since last year, found that digging out all the information wasn't an easy task.

"I spoke to his family members, friends, conductor friends, producers and directors. Believe me, it wasn't easy at all.

"After completing the book, I presented it to Rajni sir in November. He didn't say a word and just took it. What unnerved me more was that for next 10 days I didn't get any response from his side. And then a letter arrived," she said.

Commenting on the initiative, Rajnikanth wrote in the letter: "This is a result of extraordinary effort made by Dr. Gayatri. She has gone through many trials and trouble to put together this book. She has woven together numerous incidents into a kind of screenplay, which is stylish and beautifully presented. I am overwhelmed with the book. I hope readers would enjoy it."

According to Gayatri, apart from English, the book would also be released in other languages by the end of the year - Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, Hindi, Marathi and Japanese.

"The first edition would see nearly 20,000 copies in English hitting the bookshelves across the country March 6," said publisher Ajay Mago of Om Books International.

"By the year-end, about 20,000 copies of the book will be available in the Tamil language and at least 5,000 each in other languages. For the Japanese version, we would sell the rights to some publisher there," Mago added.

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