Book: Compass Box Killer
Author: Piyush Jha
Genre: Crime thriller, murder mystery
Number of pages: 234
Price: Rs 195
Rating: 4 out of 5
Review: The review has been presented in a dramatized manner as a conversation between me and my friend Tiasha.
Me: Hey Tiasha, I just finished this ‘Compass Box Killer’ and I must say it is an extremely gripping novel. You have got to read this.
Tiasha: And what is it about?
Me: It is a crime thriller set in Mumbai.
Tiasha: Urgh, I hate crime thrillers. That genre is not for me. You know right?
Me: Yup I know. Even I am not much fond of crime thrillers. But this one is really gripping. The plot will get on to you right from the start. A killer commits a series of murders and leaves behind a compass box containing a cryptic message. Doesn’t that sound exciting?
Tiasha: Hmmm…a bit. So, who is the author?
Me: Piyush Jha. He is a noted filmmaker and he had also written ‘Mumbaistan’ earlier. This book is the second edition of the ‘Mumbaistan’ series.
Tiasha: Piyush Jha? Well, if he is a filmmaker and not a professional writer, I don’t think he can do justice to a full-length novel.
Me: Now, you are being prejudiced. I don’t blame you coz even I held such a prejudice before picking this book. But I must say that I have begun to respect him a lot. He writes really well. His command over the language is no less than that enjoyed by a top-notch author. There is a certain flow to his writing which will make you pretty much hooked.
Tiasha: Okie, so is the book really that good?
Me: I would say that the book is loads better than what I was expecting of it. The first half is so intensely gripping that I was even planning to rate the book 4.5 at one time. Finally, I settled for 4 coz the second half probably fell slightly flat, though not much.
Tiasha: And is there any detective or anything like a Holmes or a Poirot?
Me: Oh yes, well not a detective exactly, but a police inspector. Inspector Virkar is the hero of the novel. And he is pretty much like Aamir Khan of ‘Talaash’. You will find him endearing and you will root for him when he is running out of luck or is in some sort of a danger.
Tiasha: Any romantic angle?
Me: Haha, You want only that, don’t you. Well, there is this journalist woman by the name Raashi. And she is hot, smart and ambitious. Piyush Jha teases the readers with some interactions between her and Inspector Virkar. You got to read the book to find out if something cooks up between them or not.
Tiasha: Okay, so did you buy the book?
Me: No, not exactly! The publishing firm ‘All About Books Global’ sent me a copy coz they wanted it reviewed. So, I must thank the head Shreya Chatterjee. This book has become a prized asset.
Tiasha: Ummm, okay, lend it to me. Let me see, if it is as good as you say.
Me: (hands her the book): Take it. Read it. But promise me that you would return the book after you are through.
Tiasha: (grins): I will have to. Otherwise, you will hound me for the rest of my life
(we both split into peals of laughter).
[This review has been written in association with the Book Review Program of 'All About Books Global', a publishing firm which has published some good books in recent times.]