Book Review: Becoming God by Pankaj Ogra

When a book has a title as interesting as Becoming God, you sit up and take notice. You have a lot of expectations from it. And when it’s a new author who’s writing about this seemingly complicated topic, the excitement mingles with a sort of apprehension that you cannot explain. After all, you will now get to read a fresh perspective of divinity.

And the blurb, though not exactly concise or clearly written, makes your senses tingle even more. It instills a strange curiosity of the concept of individuality and God. Here’s what it says:

Becoming God creates a fictional world of freedom where one can make anything possible by believing in oneself.

The story revolves around the protagonist, Parnog, a sales professional.

Things change when Parnog is drawn into a strange world and realizes he is no ordinary human being but an extension of the creators of our galaxy. He was created for a purpose – to save the world from negative forces. He is one of seven people selected to do this. However he is the only one aware of the purpose.

Parnog learns about life, people, relationships, and things about himself during the journey. He makes new friends with people from the alien world and earth. Will Parnog find the other six people? Will he be able to become God? Will he succeed in what he wishes to?

Every choice you make makes you either strong or weak, but even weakness teaches you how to build again. Humans were never weak, it was a choice they made, and they made a negative one.

Do you think the choice you make next will get you something? Choose wisely.

While the concept is interesting, Becoming God disappointed me immensely. There is just one thing that I found right in the length of the book. The point that the author Pankaj Ogra, repeats over and over again. There is God within all of us. This is the only repetitive concept in the book that I genuinely liked.

Coming to the points where a lot of improvements can be made, I lost track after a few pages.

First and foremost, the book is not ready to be published. A lot of editing remains to be done. I am disappointed and aghast at the next to nil editing. If this were done, there would be so much more to talk about and praise than just the idea that the book builds on.

Secondly, there is no connection between events. Given, there can be two unrelated incidents in a person’s life. But a book needs to flow, not cough and splutter and start afresh. At one point, the protagonist is on a different planet, interacting with different beings, talking about his mission. And then, suddenly, he is back on Earth, talking about his work, without a clue of what happened previously. There has to be something that connects the two.

Third, the narrative is preachy. When you are talking about a topic so huge, you need to put it across subtly. That’s what makes great writing. Right from page 1, there are paragraphs and paragraphs of discourses that sort of takes away the fun of reading. I don’t think readers like that kind of preaching, just like I didn’t.

Fourth, grammar and punctuation. While the words used are not necessarily bad, the sentences used are as if translated directly from Hindi into English. Colloquially, it wouldn’t be a bad thing. But when you are talking about literature that’s going to be around for a long time, you need to make sure that both the grammar and punctuation are up to the mark. No unnecessary exclamations, please.

Lastly, the biggest reason why it doesn’t work for me is the language used. The subject of the book, the message it is trying to convey is so beautiful. But it is tarnished by the crude language used. I am heavily disappointed in the book. Such a brave concept peters down to this!

Despite all this, there are a couple of quotes from Becoming God that are well-written and that ring true. Here they are:

Creating your own future means you think about something that you hope will happen in your future and then you start believing in its existence, but your belief should be so strong that it doesn’t get changed by any other person, thought, or related incidents.

This turns the book into a vague version of Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret. “You become what you think about most. But you also attract what you think about most.”

No God advocated killing each other or overshadowing each other. They only speak of harmony and peace and to know yourself and to believe in yourself.

My note to the author would be that if you can write these two quotes, then you can make the book better. There is always a role model, a hero for every writer. And unless that role model is amazing, what you bring out will always stay where it shouldn’t be. So get a role model, start reading more, and start writing more. Practice will get you where you want to be!

And my note to the editors? More like a question that I had asked in my review of Karan Johar’s autobiography, An Unsuitable Boy: What were you doing?

Rating: 1/5 stars

Author: Pankaj Ogra

Click on the image below (my Amazon Affiliate link) to buy Becoming God:

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