Engrossing and arresting…
Set in the mid-seventies in Surinampur and Calcutta in Bengal, India, Banerjee’s latest crime drama takes readers on a journalist’s journey to unearth deeply rooted corruption in public and private sectors. It’s been a little over a year since Manik Bose has joined the New Eastern Herald as a journalist, and he is excited to learn the ropes of his craft. After one of his articles delving into the irregularities by the prominent real-estate companies puts him and his boss Harish into trouble, Manik knows he has to tread carefully in the future. But when a box containing sensitive information goes missing in the state archives, Manik and a senior journalist Kedar take it upon themselves to look into the matter, unaware of the danger that awaits them ahead. Banerjee vividly depicts the quaint streets of Surinampur while peppering the measured narrative with wonderfully intimate details of the era. Though Manik and Kedar’s investigation into the nexus between the governmental agencies and real estate companies is a bit drawn out, and there are some redundant late-breaking plot twists, the gripping account of the journalist duo’s struggle to unearth the extensive fraud will keep readers turning pages, as will the tension between Manik and Sucheta. Despite some familiar tropes, Banerjee keeps the reader rooting for his appealing protagonists. Eminent governmental leaders’ involvement in the fraud and a professor’s murder further complicate Manik and Kedar’s investigation as the story barrels toward a satisfying conclusion. Throughout, Banerjee explores questions of ethics, integrity, courage, determination, and personal autonomy. This intriguing tale of corruption, crime, and friendship makes for an engaging read.
Pub date February 23, 2021
Price $5.00 (USD) Paperback, $5.00 Kindle