I had not read a book by Ravi Subramanian. The Bankerupt was new to me, also the genre largely when it came to Indian writers penning thrillers. I was pleasantly surprised as I turned the pages. It is for one a sure-shot edge-of-the-seat thriller that will not let go of the reader till the very end.
Bankerupt moves across various cities and focuses not on banking, but the education system and the US elections. It then turns into a story of twists and turns which is very satisfying. There are cryptic messages, codes, villains, heroes and a world where everyone has a motive to kill. This is unique in the book.
Battling it are Cirisha and Aditya, the husband and wife who get unwillingly embroiled in the scams and the plot only thickens. The viewpoints of the two are interesting to note, and how they change along the course of the book.
Why I liked Bankerupt? It is a well-written book to begin with. The plot in itself sometimes does not count for much and can get predictable, however the writing is taut and without any loopholes.The writing is fast paced and in the first few pages there is a murder to ensure that the reader is hooked. From that point, it is just as the reader expects—edge of the seat and extremely gripping.
The beauty of every well-written thriller is its ability to involve the readers and that is what Ravi Subramanian does best. There are three parallel tracks running which also make the book quite interesting (then again, that is purely intentional and has got to do with the craft of writing for sure). For me, sometimes reading the parallel stories was a bit tiresome, however the pace and wanting to know what happens next sure paid off for all of that. The characters are well-etched and blend effortlessly into the book.
The amount of research done for the book is evident. It has a strong sense of time and place–running through the three places equally—from Coimbatore to Mumbai to Boston—leaving the reader reeling at one point. The good thing is that it is not related to banking at all. At some point, banking is just the backdrop and nothing else. Bankerupt is a fast-paced book which can be breezed through on a Saturday afternoon.