Book Review : The Curse of Surya

Synopsis :

Sangeeta Rao, a beautiful, feisty reporter at Channel 7 TV in Singapore, rushes to Agra on a special assignment after an early morning phone call. At the Taj Mahal, she meets Alan Davies, a charming Welshman. But a terrorist attack on Mathura’s renowned Krishna temple turns them into fugitives from justice and the duo must decipher a series of complex cryptographs and unearth the illustrious Shyamantaka that belonged to Surya, the Sun God, to prove their innocence.

The Review :

The Curse of Surya by Dev Prasad is the authors first venture into the thriller genre. Given the plethora of books available in the Indian market of authors retelling mythology in their own perspective , I was happy to see someone use mythology as a plot device and not the entire plot itself.

The main characters in the plot are Sangeeta , a famous news reporter from channel 7 Singapore . Then there’s Alan Davies , a Welshman , who is irresistible to Sangeeta. Further into the story , they are joined by a elderly Frenchman ,Anton Blanchard.

Is it just me or this line up already starting to reek of Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code?

Anyway, the story opens with a murder (Ahemm!!) . The reporter who is supposed to cover the International Saints conference to be held in Mathura , is murdered under suspicious circumstances . Sangeeta is called in as an emergency replacement and has to fly immediately to Agra to cover the event. Sangeeta meets Alan in Agra and is instantly smitten.

A terrorist attack at the conference sets off a chain of events that pull Sangeeta and Alan further and further into troubled waters. The only way to save themselves and prove their innocence is to find the Shyamantaka  which has been lost for nearly 5000 years, which seems like a really tall order but thats the whole fun about it.

I would categorically like to state the author has done a lot of research about the city of Mathura and especially the janma sthan of Lord Krishna . He seems to know these places like the back of his hand and that reflects in the book.

Unfortunately , the author fails at character and plot development. I would like to cite a very specific example from the book . The Assassin , is supposed to be a very cold blooded , intimidating character , very organized and very calm . The one described in the book seems almost harmless , has no plan , and in the end he ends up dying doing the one thing he was supposed to do right and being compensated heavily for. I literally let out a chuckle when he died , the author could really have used a suicide bomber in the plot if he really intended to kill of the Assassin(Is it just me or does that sound stupid) .

When the actual search for the jewel begins, everything feels  a bit rushed , the puzzles and codes solved just when the author feels like it . If you read a lot of books in the thriller genre , its a little hard to swallow how easily everything falls into place.Plot twists are there but nothing you cannot see coming .

Rating : 2.5/5

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