“Nobody’s ever been arrested for a murder;they have only been arrested for not planning it properly”– Terry Hayes
I received a review copy from the author for an honest opinion on his debut novel A Murder in Gurgaon.
Author: Manish Dubey
No of pages: 184
Publisher: Srishti Publishers
About the book:
The book starts in the year 1986. A young girl Leena Puri is called to her school principal’s office with her father. She is a mischievous child who is known for her eccentric behaviour. As this does not conform to the strict Convent environment she needs to bid farewell to the school. Her best friend who is also her lone friend Bindia is aghast by this development. Leena but seems unaffected by this.
Fast forward the year is 2014 Leena Puri is back in town and meets Bindia. Leena is still the free eccentric person she always was. Meanwhile, somewhere in Lucknow, the Dixit family are trying to get through to their youngest son Varun Dixit who resides in Gurgaon. His phone seems unreachable. Meanwhile, Leena informs Bindia that she has to set things right and post which she switches off her phone and goes missing.
Varun Dixit son of retired police inspector Hari Dixit, is found murdered in his apartment. Bindia lodges Leena’s missing complaint with the police. She is unsure as Leena goes in these missing streaks many a time. Hari Dixit wishes to take an active part in the police investigation and find out his son’s murderer. Both these cases is under inspector Ajai Singh who wishes to find Leena as well as find out Varun’s murderer. Things do not seem as simple as they seem to be. As both the cases entangle Ajai Singh is involved in a confusion like no other.
The writing is simple yet sharp. The style of writing is conversational with each chapter being an account of what happened on a particular day. This helps and engages you as we truly feel that we are a part of the police investigation. Most of the characters are sketchy but this aids the novel as it builds up the intrigue and mystery. The plot is what drives this novel. While the author does give some clues and makes certain aspects apparent a major twist which came in the novel completely shocked me.
The description is the heart of his writing as it was very rich and one really feels as if one is a part of the scene. One can understand that the author really knows and has studied the police investigation system as there are no glitches. The author has really planned and structured the novel well. While most of the novel makes for a pacy fast read there were some conversations which I found stretched.
A Murder in Gurgaon is a good debut novel by Manish Dubey. It has all the elements of a good crime thriller, it is pacy, has mystery and suspense and a good mix of grey characters that makes this one an interesting read. The simple but strong interplay of words that the author has used makes me look forward to his upcoming novels.