3 and a half murders – a review

Name of the book: 3 and a Half Murders 41igaXTEreL._SX321_BO1,204,203,200_

Author: Salil Desai

My rating: 4.5/5

While going through my Goodreads bookshelves, I stumbled upon Salil Desai’s latest novel from Inspector Saralkar Series. But, this discovery was really late, almost 10 months from the publication. I am kicking myself for not following this amazing author, who gave us our own mystery hunters duo, Senior Inspector Saralkar and PSI Motkar from Homicide Unit of Pune Police. I was fascinated by the first two books from the series and that lead me to pick his latest title instantaneously.

Maintaining the track record of the earlier titles from series, Salil Desai has managed to keep the reader’s attention with him until he completes the story. This time story takes you to Kothrud, another part of Pune, to almost open and shut case; the murder-suicide of married couple Sanjay and Anushka Doshi. But as the story unfolds, mystery hunters duo’s attempt to answer ‘why’s behind the ghastly and spine-chilling murder-suicide, brings the puzzling facts about human behaviors.

The plot takes many twists and turns leading inspectors to various cities and dive in the old case papers of Karnataka Police in for the unsolved murder in Banglore entangled with shady land deals, recruitment scams and many other irregularities related to Doshis.

I have observed in Salil’s this series, he had tried to talk about human psychology and the social stigmas around various issues like sexuality and gender identity. He has developed the characters around these issues so that he can create the dialogue in the reader’s mind about these issues. This is the quality which makes you read through the last chapter where the criminal tries to explain his side of the story, and the end where protagonist put some key pieces of the puzzle on display for us.

Senior Inspector Saralkars one-line punches and jibes to PSI Motkar add the spices to the story along with the development of their personal stories, as PSI Motkar is now an amateur actor in a play and Saralkar is trying to fight with the diagnosis of hypertension. The blurb of the book and the cover is so catchy that you can’t leave it until you dive deep into it. This is how the blurb goes:

“Two corpses . . . a woman lying dead on her bed,
a man hanging from the ceiling fan.
A suicide note cum murder confession.
And a name . . . Shaunak Sodhi.
When the case comes their way, Senior Inspector Saralkar has just been diagnosed with hypertension and PSI Motkar is busy with rehearsals of an amateur play.
What appears at first to be a commonplace crime by a debt-ridden, cuckolded husband, who has killed his unfaithful wife and then hung himself, soon begins to unfold as a baffling mystery. As clues point to a seven-year-old unsolved murder in Bangalore and other leads emerge closer home, Saralkar and Motkar find themselves investigating shady secrets, bitter grudges, fishy land deals, carnal desires, the dead woman Anushka Doshi’s sinister obsession with past life regression and her husband’s links to a suspicious, small-time god-man, Rangdev Baba.And then, suddenly, the murderer resurfaces and yet another life is in grave danger . . .
Can Saralkar and Motkar get to the bottom of an unimaginably shocking motive and stop the malevolent killer from committing the fourth murder . . .?”

Paperback: 328 pages

Publisher: Fingerprint! Publishing (8 February 2017)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 8175994258

ISBN-13: 978-8175994256

 

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Search for Indian Mystery Writer ends…

23119374Name of the book: Killing Ashish Karve

Author: Salil Desai

My rating: 4.5/5

I like to indulge myself in finding background forces resulting in the particular event or incident. And that’s the main cause of getting my mind attracted to the crime novels. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie, John Gresham, Jeffry Archer have been on my favorites list for many years. While screen shopping on Amazon Kindle store, my mind stuck on “Killing Ashish Karve” by Salil Desai. The reason was as simple as a familiarity of the surname in the title. As I flipped some pages of the preview available, I just couldn’t stop myself from choosing it as my next read.

Salil Desai didn’t make me regret my choice. The story plot is set to happen in Pune, the city which is my home for past 7 years, I felt more engrossed about the plot. But even if it would have been set in any fictional city, his narration style is very remarkable and details in writings build a very realistic picture of locations, crime scenes. The plot revolves around the suspicious death of a businessman from city and everyone close to him have one or the other motive to get rid of him.

Homicide inspectors from City Police find themselves chasing some eluding facts making any concrete progress difficult in this case. Salil wrote the story with such interesting twists and turns. Some misleading facts set them in wild goose chase, family members pull up non-cooperation card at a crucial time, are very common aspects of any murder mystery, but Salil made it a point of keeping them so interesting that reader feels them very important for the plot to move ahead. When we feel that case about to crack open and guilty will be apprehended, the story takes another turn with the murder of one of a key person. All pieces get linked almost at climax and inspectors make the arrest.

After reading “Killing Ashish Karve” I can say confidently that my search for good Indian murder mystery writer stops at Salil Desai. I am very eager for reading his other works.

Paperback: 260 pages

Publisher: Fingerprint! Publishing (1 July 2014)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 8172345313

ISBN-13: 978-8172345310

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The lie of knowing you completely

Recently a very old friend of mine was bluffing about some stupid thing and spontaneously I reacted, “Stop bluffing dude, I know you completely.” We often think that we know the person inside out and the same will never fail to surprise us with a very different side which we have never seen before. Even after so many shocks and surprises, we never stop believing in knowing someone completely. But this isn’t only about humans around us.

Today I want to talk about knowing the place completely. I am working at Centre for Development Studies and Activities (CDSA), Pune for past three years and roam around our campus daily. You all might have seen various shades of the campus and its natural beauty through my camera on many social media platforms. I strongly believed that now I know the campus completely. But yesterday, I was working a bit longer than my usual hours to finish a presentation for today.

When I was almost done with the work, I set out to the clubhouse to meet our executive director. As I was passing by one of our classrooms, The reflections of setting sun and the trees on another side of the courtyard on the door panels of classroom caught my eyes. It was a bit dark as the lights in the courtyard were yet to lit up. Orange shades on the horizon creating a silhouette of trees on foreground was such a mesmerizing sight. The setting of door, landing and the steps in front of were giving the cinemascope perspective to the entire scene. I stood by the steps enjoying the scene for a couple of minutes. I clicked a picture on my phone and moved on to the clubhouse for work.

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But while riding back home from the office, I couldn’t ignore the falseness of this feeling about knowing my office place completely. It has been three years, I spend my entire day at this place, still, this campus never fails to provide a new frame of beauty to enjoy every now and then. Even though the features, objects, buildings are the same. I see them every day. But, clouds in the sky, a pouring rain or rays of the setting sun, compels me to watch and enjoy the scene created by nature. Today I have come to terms with the fact that the feeling of knowing someone or something completely is just an illusion.

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Love for Grayscale…

No buddies, don’t worry, I am not talking about that horrifying disease Greyscale from Game of Thrones, and not about Philadelphia based pop-punk band Grayscale either. I am talking about my favorite mode of photography; Black and white. Recently I got an opportunity to express my love for grayscale monochrome photography through a weeklong photo tag. Thanks to my wonderful friend Snehal for tagging me in this project.

“Life is never perfectly Black or White, it always comes in shades of gray.” we often say this but in the past week, ‘7 Days 7 Black and White photos’ became a good opportunity to explore the world in the shades of gray. Many of you might have followed it on my Instagram handle. But I would like to bring all of them to this one place for all my other buddies.

Enjoy the 7 Days 7 Black and White photos

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I so wish for the mobile phones which can click directly black and white photographs. Applying black and white filters is kind of mediocre way. Guys, let’s make some noise about this so that mobile manufacturers will think about adding one sensor for us black and white lovers.

Until next time…

Over. Aditya Out.

 

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No, It’s not a creative block

Hello friends,

I am really sorry to keep you all waiting. I know, I have missed my last two posts. No, it’s not a creative block that’s holding me up. She is kind of preoccupied with some cool stuff happening at my office, which soon will be revealed to you.

In the second half of October, I took #TheMindfulBreak with all the lovely people who gathered around on Modern Gypsy’s call. Here you can enjoy all those moments at one place.

Getting ready for #sundaymood is my #TheMindfulBreak for the day… #blue

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#farmfresh groundnuts at my friend’s farm. #CoffeeCatClicks #TheMindfulBreak #instafood

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I am really happy to be part of our li’l Mindful Break Community. I returned from this break on 1st of November and since then it has been a busy time at work. But no day is hell busy for a bibliophile. I am currently enjoying ‘The Devil is a Black Dog – Stories of War and Revolution from the Middle East and Beyond‘. I received this book in a subscription box of Kaffeinated Konversations. I will definitely tell you more about this in my next post as I will be finishing it soon.

There’s also a good news guys, I am very happy about the love you showed to my Instagram handle. Today I am celebrating 500 followers. Thank you all. Keep showering those little ❤️.

Hope to see you soon guys. Stay tuned.

Until the next time…

Bbye…

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हे सर्व कोठून येते? – A Book Review

WhatsApp Image 2017-09-08 at 12.33.53 AM

If you are aware of the contemporary Marathi theatre scene, then one name will be very familiar to you: Vijay Tendulkar. He was a fantastic playwright with many milestones in Marathi theatre like Ghashiram Kotwal, Gidhade and Sakharam Bainder which are recorded on his name. He had also written stories for some amazing films, such as Ardhasatya, Akrosh and Nishant. On the other hand, he had written many short and long articles, essays on various occasions. “हे सर्व कोठून येते?” is a compilation.

While talking about this book in its prologue, he said “After observing people for so many years, I feel labeling them is pointless. They are very complex, we can only scrape the surface of one’s personality. We have to accept that every person has a whole different life other than one we have experienced. We should not make judgments about the ‘other part’ of life. If we do, then it should be for our own musing.”

This book is all about people he met, interacted and worked with in his long span of a career as a journalist; an editor of various periodicals, a writer and during his work under Nehru Fellowship. He came across various politicians as a journalist and editor and he has tried to present them differently trying to put some light on their unique facet. He had taken the interview of ex-CM of Maharashtra Vasantrao Naik, ex-CM of Gujrat Chimanbhai Patel and J P Naik but in this book he has written elaborately about them and his experience of meeting them for an interview.

While working for Maratha, one of the old popular Marathi daily, he had witnessed a lot of different avatars of Pra. Ke. Atre, legendary writer, orator and owner of Maratha. He has been active in politics in those days and was famous for being blunt while putting his thoughts to words. He has dedicated some of the articles to his fellow writer, friends, and colleagues.

But the last two articles from the book are really different than others. They talk about death, murders and death penalty elaborately. These two articles have made me reschedule my today’s blog post for next week and write this review for you guys. I tell you, folks, I had never read anything so thought-provoking about somebody’s death or somebodies act of murdering another human. I wasn’t able to speak about anything for almost 15 minutes after I finished the book on this note. Guys, I recommend that you grab a copy of the book at least for these two articles. I know, it’s a Marathi book but you feel free to ask me anything if the language is a barrier for you, I will be very happy to help you in this matter.

My rating: – 4.5/5

Name of the book: हे सर्व कोठून येते?

Publisher: Rajhans Prakashan

Pages: 195

ISBN: 81-7434-317-2

ISBN13: 9788174343178

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