Author – Anonymous
Publisher – Grey Oaks
Price – 175/-
Rating – 4/5
What do you get when you throw together a talented, hardworking, overworked and underpaid accountant, his sneaky snake of a boss, a gold digging girlfriend, un-approving parents and the promises of a job offer that will take him from zero to hero? Well, you get a book called “Scammed”
An excerpt of the book:
Life is miserable for Hitesh Shah, despite his coveted job in a top accounting firm. Labeled a nerd by colleagues, ignored by women and rebuked by parents, Hitesh cannot resist when offered a lucrative job as the CEO of an off shoot of the failing automobile company, Supreme Motors. So what if the owner Venugopal Reddy, a sleazy businessman with political connections, actually wants Hitesh to fix the company to save his skin?
Hitesh’s drive and quest for success helps turn the Company’s fortunes around; he is seen a rising corporate star, he begins dating a model and is pampered by parents. Championed as the poster boy of emerging India, Hitesh’s fairy tale ends quickly. As his cursed luck would have it, he is soon on the run from the law? Allegedly as the perpetrator of a financial scam and accused of defrauding thousands of investors! With his back against the wall, and growing public and media opinion against him, will Hitesh come out of the mess he finds himself in?
Keeping in tune with the excerpt, the book definitely delivers. The book is a racy read and I finished it within few hours. The story is the stuff dreams are made of – the under dog emerges to become the youth icon of India and becomes everybody’s poster boy for hard work and success. There are those that use him to get where and what they want and those that just want him out of the way. Close at the heels of a rising career, life for Hitesh takes a dark turn when his career and reputation crumbles amidst political chaos, stock market crashes and heart breaks.
The attitude, integrity and turmoil’s of the main protagonist who struggles between doing what is right and the temptations of the trappings of a glamorous life has been very interestingly etched by the “Anonymous” author.
All the characters have been detailed in a believable way. The sleaze and conscience quotient of those engaging in un-ethical and immoral activities to fatten their foreign bank accounts with colored money or the extent to which they would go to achieve their ambitions will not come as a surprise to any reader living in India today.
Well, good needs to balance out evil and for this sake we have loyal friends and colleagues who help Hitesh at their own risk. Of course, there are no plots without heart breaks, love lost and real love found which in this case is an “Ugly Betty” (Remember “Jassi jaise koi nahin”??) type of assistant who stays by the main protagonist through his dipping fortunes and continues to stay for the long haul.
Another factor of the book, that catches the reader’s attention is that the name of the author has been listed as “Anonymous”. Well, I did some googling and discovered that it has been written by none other than Ahmed Faiyaz who is a chartered accountant and the author of books such as Love, Life and all that jazz, Another Chance etc.,
Well, well, well – what can I say? I was not so full of love for his earlier book, Love, Life and all that jazz but was pleasantly surprised with this one. He has definitely capitalized on his strength of defining the characters well. If he continues to write fiction like this I might become a regular reader of his books. If you are intrigued, check out his blog or his website.
To me the book was a cross between the movies “Wall Street” and “The Fugitive”, but set in India! I did wonder why the story was not narrated by the main protagonist, considering the title extension “Confessions of a confused accountant” – there are no confessions though
Definitely recommended for readers who consider scams a part of life, accountants and lovers of contemporary desi fiction!