'The Chennai Killings' book review: Opening wounds

The story is told from multiple points of view as per the needs of the book.

Published: 12th April 2020 05:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 11th April 2020 03:40 PM   |  A+A-


For representational purposes

Express News Service

CID Inspector Vikram Rathore is battling memories of his sister’s brutal murder that has given him many a sleepless night. But it is the recent murder of a young woman in Chennai that takes him on a journey of buried secrets, complicating his already messed-up life. As he ventures further, he comes close to unravelling his sister’s murderer. Is he really ready to learn the secrets that will finally put his doubts to rest? But what if these secrets threaten to change his life forever and question everything that he ever believed in? Chital Mehta’s latest mystery novel is all about discovering dangerous secrets lurking inside human minds, set against a backdrop of Chennai, India’s southern megalopolis.

The Chennai Killings
By: Chital Mehta
Publisher: Quignog
Pages: 194
Price: Rs 299

 When Vikram is assigned the case of another murder near the same college where the first murder had taken place, prima facie it seems like an open and shut. The killer is obvious. Little does the policeman know that this case will reopen pages from his own past. Setting out to look for clues, he inches his way a bit at a time towards the killer. At the same time, he moves on to unravel what happened three years ago. But he struggles to find a connection between his sister’s case and this one. 

The story is told from multiple points of view as per the needs of the book. There is no sequence as the reader alternates between past and present through a writing that is fluid and easily understandable. The story is stripped down to the bare skeleton, so if you are looking for the usual descriptive verbiage, this book is not for you. The author manages to hold your interest and retain an element of surprise. 

To the police officer, it evokes memories of his only sister’s ugly murder a few months ago outside the same college. With the murderer on the loose, he is worried sick and on delving deeper, he stumbles on secrets which he is not at all ready for. Then comes the denouncement that is guaranteed to leave you flabbergasted. Of course, I am not telling.

Though for me, by the time I was through one-fourth of the book, I had made my own list of suspects and a few pages later, I thought I knew the ending and the culprit. The rest of the reading was only to find out if I had guessed right. The author has put in a lot of effort and it shows. If thrillers are not your cup of tea, try this to begin with. It does not disappoint. 
A racy read of under 200 pages.

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