Book review indian authors

#BookReview : The Shrine of Death by Divya Kumar

On the jacket: 

Prabha Sinha, an IT professional in Chennai, is plunged into a murky world of idol theft, murder, and betrayal after she gets a mysterious phone call one night from her old friend Sneha Pillai. As she races to find answers before the people she loves get hurt, she seeks the help of Jai Vadehra, a troubled young man with a tragic past, and the gorgeous DSP Gerard Ratnaraj of the Idol Wing, CID, whom she can’t help but be drawn to. Their search takes them from Chennai’s newsrooms and universities to the abandoned sepulchral shrine of a Chola queen in the heartland of Tamil Nadu, and nothing, and no one, is as they seem.


I rarely get to read thrillers by Indian authors so every time there is an opportunity, I try to grab it. Divya Kumar’s The Shrine of Death by Divya Kumar is about friendship, relationships, the dark side to personalities, a thesis and an idol theft. Prabha Sinha is an IT professional who after a lot of thinking, has quit her full time job and is in the phase where she isn’t sure what she should do next. A mysterious call from her ex-bestfriend throws her off guard since she had not spoken to Sneha in fours years and considering the fallout they both had, the latter would never have called her had it not been very serious. Why had Sneha called Prabha? The call couldn’t be completed and Prabha was clueless about what happened. Her concern piqued since Sneha’s number was unreachable from after that. She decided to try trace Sneha in person and talk to her. This leads her to her friend’s place of work, PhD professor, place of residence and more. In her quest to find her friend, Prabha gets pulled into a web she had not the wildest dream about.
Now, I am not a fan of historical plots. They drag me to a story which apparently has a lot of semblance from the past, but I have no clue about it mostly and most often, I get terribly confused. The first great thing about The Shrine of Death is that this is what the story didn’t do. Yes, the base of the plot is historic but here are no pages after pages of descriptive details of uninteresting facts. Kumar has been innovative with the plot and kept multiple storylines, almost all of which are in the present. 
There are decent numbers of characters introduced and all of them add to the story, even if not directly. This, while is a great factor, is also what takes away from the thrill factor. 
The Shrine of Death is a historical thriller yet it did not keep me glued to my seat all through it. The plot kept going in and out of different loops and my mind would wander too. The narration was crisp, however there was a lot of casual Indianised language used in the dialogues which I wasn’t quite expecting.
A quick read you’d enjoy, specially if you love mysteries.

Rating: 3.5/4

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