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  • Author : Mayur Didolkar
  • Publisher : Juggernaut Books
  • Genre : Thriller
  • Source : Author
  • Rating : 3/5 Stars

I first heard of The Dark Road on this podcast called Myindmakers. The hosts had mentioned that they knew the author and congratulated him on the release of his new thriller. I hadn’t heard of the author or of the book before (now sure why there is such less publicity) so I checked it out and followed the author, making a note to grab a copy of the book. Luckily for me the author messaged asking if I would like a copy and I happily said yes even though it is an ebook and not a kindle edition.

The story is about a young and troubled girl called Sanju who loses her sister, befriends an older man, befriends a married man and somehow ends up dead while on a trek alone. Naturally everyone is a suspect but the detective, a retired police officer, has a hard time believing the stories and alibis given to her by everyone present. Things are getting pretty clear but then, as with all such thrillers, there is a twist that will, if you don’t read thrillers that often, leave you surprised.

I find it hard to rate this  book because while I enjoyed the story I didn’t enjoy the experience. The publisher tries to marker themselves as India’s first ePublishing platform that comes directly from the publisher onto an app but the app itself leaves pretty much everything to be desired so it completely took away from the experience for me. While I won’t review the app here, I just added this so you are aware that my enjoyment of this book might have been hindered by this.

WHAT I LIKED : I really enjoyed what this book had to offer in terms of uniqueness. I read a lot of thrillers and thoroughly enjoy the genre but I always found Indian thrillers to be a little lacking. This one, unlike most other Indian thrillers I’ve read, wasn’t. The author obviously reads a lot of the genre because he avoids most of the major clichés that are present in most Indian books, avoids (mostly) the Bollywood dramatics and manages to write a fast paced thriller that even western readers will appreciate.

The story flows from different perspectives and while there was a lot of stuff I didn’t particularly enjoy, the author manages to differentiate between POVs well and makes the experience more believable. I particularly liked how he wrote the negative characters, making them both likeable and unlikeable at the same time.

WHAT I DISLIKED : The author, like most other male authors, misses the mark a bit when writing women. Only a bit though. Prasanna was okay (though she read like she was a good few years younger than she was) but the others just felt like TV series versions of themselves and I didn’t believe they were real people. The male characters on the other hand were well written but since I am a girl maybe I wouldn’t be the best judge of that? I also thought the ending was a teensy bit hurried and dramatic. But then, what’s an Indian book without a bit a drama?

I wish the publisher made this available in paperback. I don’t mind people only releasing ebooks but the app should be functional if they do. The app singlehandedly turned me off reading this book. What I would have finished in a day or two I took more than two weeks to read. I’d say take my rating as given with a pinch of salt, it may be a 3.5.

A beautiful young athlete goes camping in Pune and ends up dead. Her rich industrialist mentor hires a super-smart private detective, Prasanna Killedar, to investigate. Who would want to beat a young girl to death? In this fast-paced whodunit, evidence can lie and everyone has something to hide.

Available for purchase on the Juggernaut app.