Title: Peiskos

Author: Reema D’souza

Genre: Non fiction

The book Peiskos is a collection of unusual and beautiful words with little stories woven around each word. These stories bring out the beauty of each experience that the word evokes.


There are so many words that bundle together fleeting emotions to make up an experience that is difficult to express in just one word. The words in the book hold a wealth of meaning, they present a bunch of emotions that stir in a person when he encounters a thing or a situation.

The title of the book is one such word. Peiskos means the feeling one has sitting in front of a fireplace enjoying the warmth. It is not the mere warmth but also a feeling of contentment that one gets.

There are 26 such lovely words in the book. It is not enough to give their meaning in one word, phrase or sentence. So Reema has gone ahead and written little tales that bring out the meanings and the emotions so well.

What works well

It is a very diverse collection of words that showcases emotions like love, wistfulness, confusion, exhilaration so that the reader gets a well rounded reading experience.

The origins of the words are given too. There are words that have origins as diverse as Latin, Greek, Spanish, Japanese, French, Filipino, Welsh, German and Scottish. I was pleasantly surprised to find a few words from the Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows. It just shows how fluid our languages are, in taking words of different provenance and making them our own.

There were a few that found resonance with me. Gigil is the irrestible urge to hug someone because you love them. Jouska is a hypothetical conversation that you play out compulsively in your head. Latibule is a place of safety and comfort and reminded me of childhood hiding places. Hiraeth, Opis, Retrovailles were other words that intrigued me.

On the other hand

The stories that accompany the words feel a little vague. Some are like a ramble of a person. Sometimes the gender of the person is not clear and sometimes the difficulty in situations is only hinted at. More detail in these stories would definitely help for them to stick in the reader’s mind. It would also have helped if there were different voices for the stories or at least a different setting.

About the Author

Reema D’souza is an Indian blogger and poet. An engineer by day, but when the sun sets to make way for the night, she writes. Writing poetry and fiction give her the much needed escape from reality. Most of
her writing is inspired by nature and life experiences.
While she’s not writing, she prefers to read. Music is another of her interests.


If you like collecting words that are not part of an average person’s vocabulary and are drawn to complex emotions, then this book is for you.

Read it for nostalgia and exquisite emotions.

Download the book here.

3 thoughts on “Peiskos by Reema D’souza: Book Review

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