Barbara Cartland's novel "Love on the Wind" describes a place in Hyderabad, which was formerly the "Residency". Today this building houses the Koti Women's College (okay, University College For Women
). You'll never be able to verify the authenticity of this piece of information. However, just across the street at the Universal Book Showroom, you might just find the book in question. If not, they'll hunt down the last copy in the city and call you the next day.
Your student life in Hyderabad is incomplete without a visit to the Universal Book Showroom. Be it Intermediate, EAMCET, IIT-JEE, Medical, Engineering, Dental or any other professional course, once a student enters this one, he'll find it very difficult to, er, graduate to another store.
What strikes you first as you enter Universal is the chaotic arrangement of books. But it is an atmosphere that makes a student from AP feel at home. It represents hope for a better tomorrow. And a bookshop like this should not be an advertisement of the Dewey Decimal system. It has to exemplify the education system in itself.
That said, Universal Book Showroom boasts of a supply chain model that could rank alongside that of the Mumbai dabbawallas. Well, at least they can match the Mumbaikars on the decibel scale. Like every Hyderabadi worth his Irani chai, these chaps do make a lot of noise about the work they do.
Coming to Koti only to pick up a book from Universal is tantamount to picking up the latest issue of FHM for an update on Indian politics. This area is a hotspot for budding engineers and MBAs. Picking up Irodov's solutions book, the IIT aspirant transforms from a mere book browser into a chaat browser just a bookstore away. There is no better way to chill out than grab a plate of Dahi Papdi at Gokul Chaat
after a picking up all textbooks you need for the rest of your student life.
Or that is what a student thinks every time he visits Universal. The shopkeeper however knows it for a fact that it is definitely not your last visit. If you wondering how this review has come 10 years too late, just read this paragraph again.
In his Ogilvy On Advertising, David Ogilvy, speaking of direct marketing, reiterates the importance of an effective communication channel between the seller and the customer, which in turn results in customer satisfaction. It's a pity we didn't find this book at Universal yesterday. But wait, that's a call from the store! And guess what? "Ogilvy on Advertising" awaits us. We must leave immediately!
Also read: Universal Book Shoppe (S R Nagar)