Book Review: Surpanakha

Surpanakha_cover 1_rev2.indd

Title:  Surpanakha

Author: Hariharan Iyer

Pages: 304 pages

Publication: Notion Press

Plot: Educated, young, no-nonsense bearing, able administrator-these are the equalities that won Sesha the loyalties of the people after three years of rule as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu. An allegation that he was the mastermind behind the murder of 73 Kannadigas threatens to bring him down but he is miraculously saved at the 11th hour.

Even before he can relish his victory, Sesha is slapped with the charge of sexually offending a young nurse. This time around, the case is strong and his supporters are uncertain. Worse, his teenage daughter calls him ‘vile’ and walks out of the house. While Mythili, his wife promises her full support, her secretive activities-undertaken with the help of a retired cop-is cause of concern for Sesha.

Will Zarina, the human-rights activist, succeed in bringing him down? What about the insinuations of a celebrity lawyer that he is casteist and anti-minorities? When the young nurse is found dead, the case becomes even more complex. Who is innocent? Who is guilty? And who is the mastermind?

This political thriller describes the current state of the country very well. The media involvement in law cases, protesting activists, loopholes and corruption in the system as a plot setting is realistic and quite gripping. Honestly I am not much into politics, but this book kept me glued from start till the end. I wanted to find out whether Mr Sesha is innocent or has he really committed the crime. There are two major plot twists amongst the many which will make you feel closer to the truth but again you will have to wait to find out.

The first few chapters in the book are narrated from individual character’s perspective. Initially, it was a little difficult to remember the characters and the kind of impression they left on the reader was confusing, but post that the story picks pace and becomes intense and gripping. While most of the characterization is developed well, my favorite character in the book would undoubtedly be Mythlli. Her determination, trust and presence of mind balled me over.

You will only understand why this book is named Suparnakha towards the end. Over all the book is quite a read for all the thriller lovers.

My Ratings: 3.5/5

About the Author: HariharanIyer is a finance professional based in Dar es Salaam. Not content with just a rewarding corporate job, he took to writing a couple of years back. He blogged on media and current affairs for a year at before hitting on the idea for this novel. An idea so powerful that it convinced the accountant in him that he could put together not just a balance sheet but an intriguing political thriller as well. He has definite views on politics, NGOs and media ethics and has tried to package them in the form of an interesting novel. Hariharan lives with his wife in Dar es Salaam while his two sons are pursuing their ambitions in India.

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Links for downloading e-books: Amazon India | Amazon US | Amazon UK

Links for ordering paperbacks: Amazon India | Flipkart

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PS: – Thanks to the author for sending a copy of the book for an honest review.


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