Traumatic incidents when one is young can have a long-lasting effect on an individual’s mind and take people on different paths – depending on their own strength of character. In Raakshas, one is moved by guilt to become a protector of law and order, while the other goes down the dark road of becoming a serial killer. The book is about these two intersecting paths with plenty of incidents and drama thrown in.
‘Raakshas’ begins with a background of the main character and the circumstances, and incidents that lead him towards contrary behaviour. It is the journey of a child who has a maniac for a father, did not take care of his son when the mother died. Thus, the boy’s childhood is painful and full of remorse. It is easy to empathise with the boy because it is circumstances that make him a Frankenstein. The child runs away and encounters a ‘Kalantak Baba’ – and becomes his apprentice. Simultaneously, the parallel track about the cop, Maithili Prasad, who would later fight the killer, begins and serves as a comparison with the two protagonists. The narrative keeps you hooked – I challenge you to put the book down!
She has her own past dark deeds but also an inner voice that goads her to catch the Mumbai’s “Mundi killer”. The story is a fast past one and it kept me hooked till the end. I would give it 4 out of 5 stars and really enjoyed the visual storytelling talent of the author. In all its gripping and I am not going to divulge too much – a must read.
As a bonus feature, there is also an appendix on some serial killers–Amardeep Sada, Darbara Singh (The Baby Killer), Mohan Kumar (Cyanide Mohan), Umesh Reddy, Chandrakant Jha (The Body Parts Killer), Sadashiv Sahu (The Godhuli Killer), Devendra Sharma (The Taxi Killer) and Shankariya (The Hammer Man), who have all been equally menacingly deadly.
Author: Piyush Jha
Genre: Fiction/ Crime Thriller
Publisher: Westland Ltd
Price: Rs 295
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Piyush Jha is a filmmaker and writer, better known for his much-lauded films such as Sikandar (2009), King of Bollywood and Chalo America and his Bestseller crime-thriller novels, Mumbaistan, Compass Box Killer, Anti-Social Network and now Raakshas. He started his career in advertising as an Account Executive at Grey Worldwide in 1995. It was during his stint in Mudra Communications that he began to explore his creative side by directing in-house films and soon moved to directing corporate films as well. In 1998, he took this interest on further to start his own ad film production company Vitamin J Productions. Raakshas is his fourth novel.
Text by Gursimran Singh