Book Review: A Perfect Murder and Other Stories

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Title:  A Perfect Murder and Other Stories

Author: S.R. Nair

Pages: 170 pages

Plot: A naïve man and a divorcee, a wronged woman’s fight for justice, a poor woman’s desire for an iPad, a charming young man plots to seduce a beautiful, blonde tourist, a staunchly orthodox immigrant’s struggle to assimilate in the U.S. … These are some of the captivating stories in this book which heralds a distinct voice and is a “seriously good read”.

Thoughts:   I have always been a little hesitant to read short stories, until recently when I have read a few short stories in a row and I am becoming fond of short story books. A Perfect Murder and Other Stories by S. R. Nair contains 14 short stories about murder, matrimony, betrayal, greed, dowry harassment, reach of the internet, etc. The book is quite short but it covers wide range of genres. The plot of the stories are based in India and America. Most of the stories are spread across three to four pages except for two, ‘A Perfect Murder’ and ‘Salma’s Fate’ that are around twenty-five pages long.

I liked the fact that the author managed to do justice to each and every story in only 170 pages. The narration is crisp yet apt enough to understand the characters and the plot. All the stories seemed realistic and authentic and the emotions of the characters were easily conveyed. My top three story picks from the book would be ‘Ipad’, ‘Visa for America; and Zubair.

Ipad: This story is about Hira bai who just got aware of the existence of Ipad by her employee’s son who has visited from US. Her innocence and love for her husband are well portrayed in just three pages. The reason she wants an ipad is heart touching.

Visa for America: An executive form US finds his wife on an Indian matrimony site. But love is not always the reason people marry. There is much more to it. I like the mystery created in this story and I loved the end.

Zubair: A progressive Musilm, Zubair, is forced to move to US due to family pressure. He is really concerned about his orthodox wife and kids adjusting to the US culture. But to his surprise he is the one facing trouble while his wife and kids adjust easily to the west.

With gently detached narration, realistic plot and authentic characterization, makes this book is an enjoyable read.

Ratings: 3.5/5

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

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