Book Review: The Karachi Deception
RAW. ISI. An international Mafia with a death warrant for an international criminal , culminating into an espionage thriller featuring India and Pakistan ! That IS a heady mix. I have been hearing positives about the book long before the author, Shatrujeet Nath, asked me to read it. Obviously I was thrilled when I received an email from him. An Indian book with great reviews, what more could a indi-lit fan ask for.
The Karachi Deception starts of with a foiled assassination attempt on Irshad Dilawar – India born, international criminal, most importantly wanted by India for a number of crimes against and in his home country. The action soon shifts to India where, the elite secret group of RAW -Unit Kilo – are selecting a 3-member team to once and for all finish off the threat of Dilawar. A crack team to assassinate the elusive criminal. And they are calling it Project Abhimanyu (the mythological hero who in-filtered the enemy ranks.) While ISI across the border, in Pakistan, is gearing to step up the security of one of their most important assests against India – Irshad Dilawar!
Espionage is a funny game where the most guarded secrets always tend to find a way out. This one does too. Dilawar’s plan leaks out to RAW and RAW’s leaks out straight to ISI. Dilawar is scheduled to visit Karachi for 2 days – that is where the Indians plan to get him and that is where the Pakistanis want to get the Indians. Meanwhile there are others too who want Dilawar out of the equation and life, desperately. Professional assassins who kill out of love for the act are contracted for Dilawar’s life and they land in Karachi too. The book thereon is a game to the finish. Who gets Dilawar? The assassins? The Indians? Do the Pakistanis out wit both or is the gangster compromised? Or is project Abhimanyu itself compromised?
The book brings your greed out. It exposes you to an admirable standard in story telling. It makes you want the same levels in every Indian book. Short and sweet – it raises the bar! Shatrujeet impresses immensely with his debut. Infact it never reads like one. He is a seasoned pro (though a debuting novelist) and he writes like one. The research undertaken is impressive and the word-painting on the pages blur the fine line between fact and fiction exceptionally well. The storyline is laced with twists and revelations worthy of an espionage thriller.
Where it disappointed me a wee bit was, though it had is twists well in place, the final twist came in a bit too early and as a result nearly flatened out the thriller effect. A bit of playing around the climax would have made it an outright adrenaline rusher.
Not withstanding this, a recommended read and definately a writer to watch out for.
Browse through the full list of book reviews in the depths of the Pensieve.