Book- THE DOPPELGANGER
Author- Prateek Yadav
The perfect plan for the perfect heist-a team of con-men, foolproof disguise and a painting worth millions, nothing could have gone wrong. But something did... A man finds himself on a bus to Manali with nothing but some cash and severe memory loss. Embarking on a frantic hunt for his identity, he begins to discover that his presence in Manali isn't an accident. The closer he gets to the truth, the more elusive it becomes. Ghosts from his past haunt him as he finds himself trapped between his doppelganger, the police, a sadistic gangster and his own dwindling sanity. The journey of the search for his identity ends up being a race for survival.
The Doppelganger has this power to attract any reader because of this fantastic cover and a very sophisticated name. I was so turned on that I didn’t even read the blurb of the book before saying yes to this book. Some covers I tell you. So the book covers one hurdle with complete ease, i.e., attracting a buyer.
Now was it a smart move, in general terms no. But in this case I was saved. The book turned out to be equally amazing. It is basically a psychological thriller. There is a lot of mystery, suspense and drama. So, can it be called a Bollywood script, no, because the author has maintained a great narrative style which helped this book to shine beyond the expectations.
The narration if we talk at large isn’t extraordinarily well but it isn’t average. The dialogues however were a little plain in comparison to the narration. And for writing a thriller, and that to of that order one needs to work on both, powerful narration and precise dialogues.
Now coming on the characters, there were abundant characters if one talks about them. There was a thin line, the author could have destroyed things by adding few more or reducing some but it was just a clean slate. The supporting characters, the main leads and the hidden faces were perfectly suiting the aura. To name some, I loved Rai, and then there was Mr. Robert from the side characters whom I adored. From the main leads well I liked Sameer, after a long time I liked the main lead. He was so dark and mysterious and lost that one has to fall for him. It was nice to see that the author added only those characters which were essential, as I already stated. There were no extra charms or glamour anywhere.
The story revolved around a painting, two brothers and some goons. Sounds artistic?
I was scared, I was thinking and expecting another Bollywood inspired con mystery but the book is much more than that, you can take my word.
The story might sound a little off beat in the starting because that was the sole motive of the author. I was not able to connect with the lead at first because it was hard for me to understand the scenario. But no pain no gain as they say, the story turns out to be really nice and refreshing. I have not read many books where the author played with the mind of a character and the reader. But from here I have developed a nice taste.
As we move ahead, the story gets some pace, all the pieces of the puzzle start falling in the correct line of order. The biggest mystery is yet to unfold but all the circles that were made for the readers were very nicely done. I was enjoying this game along with the players of the book and at the same time I was feeling helpless with the characters that had no idea where the maze ended.
At many places the author was touching the past, making it easy to relate to the characters and to know about them as we move ahead. I love reading flashbacks inside the story; it gives me a break from the ongoing drama. Thanks Author.
Flashbacks also help in creating more mystery and solving some queries at the same time, so it is a sure-sure win every time, if used properly.
The last quarter of the book could have been better. I don’t like reading all the explanations together; I like mystery to get solved step by step. But maybe it was the only way for this book. The ending mended all the dents though. I can’t say I loved it, but it was unexpected and that is what is needed from a suspense book.
So, all in all the book was a nice package of just one thing, i.e., Mystery and that is what makes this a great read. It is not a mixture of a lot of genres. You won’t find love, romance, humor, etc. You will find only what the book aims at. You can enjoy minimal flaws in the editing, which will make your reading experience smooth, also you can enjoy a little above the line vocabulary.
I can recommend this book to those who are looking for a good book by a fresh author and also those who are fed up from romance.
About the author-
Prateek Yadav was born and raised in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh. He graduated in economics at IIT Kanpur, and is currently working at Cognizant, Bangalore. He is an avid fiction reader with a keen inclination towards mystery and thrillers. Besides writing he also enjoys sketching and painting. The Doppelganger is his first published novel.
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