The Honest Season

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Blurb: 2 political rivals fighting for power
1 journalist caught in the battle
6 tapes secretly recorded in Parliament
1 government with a lot to hide
Sikander Bansi, an unlikely political heir in Delhi, secretly records politicians in Parliament as they haggle to become cabinet ministers, bag defence contracts, dodge criminal charges and collect corporate largesse. Among them is a rising leader of the People’s Party, Nalan Malik, whose success has come through unscrupulous means. When Sikander suddenly disappears, Mira Mouli, a newspaper journalist with an unusual gift for knowing people’s thoughts, receives the controversial Parliament tapes along with clues to find him. She is attracted to Sikander’s principles and is wary of Nalan’s deceit. But her powers of knowing tell her a different story, one that she can unravel only at the cost of her life. From the bestselling author of Shoes of the Dead, this is a disturbing political fiction that reveals why Parliament functions behind gates closed to the public.

About the author: Kota Neelima has been a journalist for 20 years and holds a Master’s Degree in International Relations from the Jawaharlal Nehru University. She writes on politics, democratic reforms and issues concerning rural poor in India. She is Senior Research Fellow, South Asia Studies at The Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), Johns Hopkins University, Washington, DC. Neelima has written four books of fiction based on her exploration of Indian politics, her experience as a journalist as well as a researcher. Each book questions the accepted notions of politics and society and seeks to demarcate desperation of hopelessness and choice.

Review:  The Honest Season is the 2nd book I have read of Author Kota Neelima. The book starts as intelligent political thriller which made me wonder that these all refers to some of the recent national level impacted events. There were many oh God moments where I felt the plot got a bit crushed in them. I was interested to read this book, after reading the blurb but it did not appeal much to me. I am used to the power feel being born and brought up in Delhi and also coming from a family bureaucrats. The Delhi portrayed in the novel was not something new to read. At some places, the novel went beyond politics and corruption, making it a little boring read. No doubt The Honest Season has touched those issues of our daily lives in a different manner; I appreciate the author for her writing style. The story is of 2 political rivals’ struggle of power and a woman journalist caught in that dirty battle, generating perfect scene of the Indian politics. At times I felt the book can be made into a movie as it has that kind of potential to be on screen. Though it kept me engaged, some parts were real boring. Otherwise it is a good read and who have not read author Kota Neelima earlier can go for this book.

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