Writing of generic fiction is attaining new heights in Indian publishing industry. Many new authors are entering the field and it is sure that at least some of them are going to give their western counterparts a tough competition in near future. I am happy to claim that the author of the book I am reviewing here has a good chance of being one among them. Catching the Departed is the first novel by Kulpreet Yadav, founder-editor of a global literary journal. The novel was short listed for Hachette- DNA 'Hunt for the next bestseller'. Published by Tara, this is the first book of a series that features ex-army man and journalist Andy Karan.
A drunkard is murdered in a remote village and Andy Karan is send there to investigate it. He finds that the episode is not a stand alone one and that he has kicked the hornet's nest when he is attacked. Andy uncovers a lethal plan by foreign terrorists targeting Indian cities. He also finds someone from inside, someone real powerful is behind all these and that his life and the life of someone he really cares about is in danger. Will Andy be able to protect them as the bodycount around him multiplies? Read the book to find out.
The intention of this book is to tell a thrilling story that keeps the interest of the reader throughout its length. It does not boast any great literary ambitions. In that regards the book is a success. The book starts with a twin murder and the pace that is set explosively never slacks for the entire length of the book. Each page throws more and action on the face of the reader. The climax does justice to the plot. The book is immensely readable- I finished it in the course of a day, in two sittings. This is an ideal book to carry for that day time train journey or for a lazy holiday afternoon.
But one suggestion I have to make is about the lead character. Andy Karan comes across as a nice guy, infact very likeable and resourceful at times. He is brave, loyal and patriotic even vulnerable at times. He is fine to be the hero of a novel. But to take a whole series forward, I seriously doubt he has enough in him. The lead of a series has to have a charisma, a dynamic quality or a peculiar quirk that Andy lacks. And eating banana for lunch is not a good enough quirk in my view.
I recommend Catching the Departed for those who like a well paced thriller, which is an easy read. A good début.
Book Source: Author