Like the recent times, Twitter again helped me discover a new Indian author – Aparna Sinha. Ashvamedha is her debut novel and it didn’t take me long to order it.
First up, I am guilty of judging this book by its cover; actually, the blurb is more like it. It hints at a plot that perhaps revolves around a kingmaker and the game spread out to make the king. I almost bracketed it as another Chanakya based story, but I was wrong. Terribly wrong.
And I’m glad, for grabbing this book is one of the better investments I’ve made in recent times. This book is 214 pages of sheer fervor and adrenaline rush.
The storyline revolves around Ashwin Jamwal, a young IAS officer who wants to change the system, but when he fights and fails, he joins politics and goes on to eventually become the most successful prime minister the nation ever had. However, he owes a great deal of his success to one master puppeteer, Hades, who is running the show and calling all the shots. Ashwin, obviously, does not know this.
It’s entirely intriguing that despite being the most powerful character in the story, Hades is mentioned only once as a passing reference in the first half of the book – that’s a masterstroke by the author! Now what is the kind of game that Hades has laid, what is his grand plan, who all are a part of his scheme of things, what is the sheer scale of his plan, the dauntlessness with which he executes his moves and where & how does Ashwin fit into all this, in a nutshell, is the summary of this fascinating and convoluted story. Any extra bit of information that I give you might ruin your experience so I would rather abstain.
It is an extremely brilliant plot, pretty much like a magician’s trick – the buildup, the actual act, and the grand reveal. To some, the initial part might appear a bit stretched, but given how the story advances and what it eventually culminates into, the length is legitimized.
Overall, this is a quick paced, enrapturing political thriller. The language is simple, the narrative is lucid, and almost every character is a shade of gray. This book has more twists and turns than an Abbas Mastaan movie and I mean this in a very positive way.
The book deals with issues ranging from friendship, comradery, unrequited love, politics, corruption, global powerhouses, and terrorism. Prima facie, too much to be dealt with in a single book. By the time you’ve finished it, you realize they were all pieces of one mega plot ultimately fitting in, to finish the perplex.
This definitely is one of the better stories I’ve come across in recent times. DO NOT give this a miss. Place this on your bookshelf and make room for more because Aparna Sinha is here to stay. Looking ahead to more stories from her.
Click here to buy: http://amzn.to/2hhPAyd
About the Guest writer: Niket Sinha is a marketer by profession and a storyteller at heart, he lives for three things – Food, friends, and family. When he is not busy making marketing plans and analytical reports, he can often be spotted reading a book, or sometimes, even trying to write one. Oh, by the way, he makes amazing desi Chinese! You can contact him on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram.
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