“A mysterious murder at the Qutub Minar triggers a call to ace journalist Chandrasekhar from his cop acquaintance, Inspector Syed Ali Hassan. The victim is unlike anyone Chandra has ever seen: a white Caucasian male who has all the looks of a throwback to Greek antiquity. Soon after, Hassan calls in to report the case has been taken away from him in all likelihood by RAW the Research & Analysis Wing, the uber-agency of Indian intelligence.
What began as a murder enquiry soon morphs into a deadly game of hide-and-seek within the shadowy world of Pakistan’s ISI and India’s RAW; and Chandra, his friend history professor Meenakshi Pirzada and Hassan find themselves in a race against time to avert a sub-continental nuclear holocaust. As the action moves to its hair-raising climax among the Hindu Kush Mountains of Afghanistan, Chandra must face up to the fact that Inspector Hassan is not all that he seems…”
History meets James Bond and Tintin in this unusual book. A journalist, Chandra who is still recovering from the loss of his wife joins a no-nonsense Indian cop in old Delhi to fill the cracks of a plot that might destroy India as we know it and cause another war between India and Pakistan! Chandra is joined by his good friend Meenu a smart, well-informed historian as he is plunged into the complicated world of Indian and Pakistani politics, nuclear war plots and the probable birth of a new world order.
The book started out in a very interesting manner and then burries itself into a complicated plot of averting a nuclear holocaust. The kind of person that I am, I was goggle eyed while reading the whole thing as many concepts were going beyond my head. I mean the very thought of an external group of fanatics trying to create an impression of Pakistan launching a nuclear missile on India in order to bring in a new world order was mind boggling! Even more interesting was how the most dreaded ISI is actually portrayed in a decent light – the author throws light on some of the qualified and intelligent folks who work in the ISI and do perfectly legal stuff to ensure the safety of their own country and its neighbour India…….I was impressed! And then you have a bunch of characters from our own nation, who are traitors to their homeland considering they are actually supporting the looney bunch to anhiliate their homeland!
Then there was the whole James Bond factor – Chandra and Hassan are whisked away to Afghanistan on a top secret mission to avert a nuclear war. The race against time in the midst of a hostile crowd is unbelievable…The book is filled with a lot of cinematic features.. I mean you have a history professor who cracks the code to obtain the co-ordinates of the missiles, journalists and cops who seem familiar with a wide variety of subjects, the enemy who actually turns around to support the good guys and much more……not to forget the romance angle between the journalist and the history professor. Honestly I am kind of getting bored with these angles especially when the new girl friend was the best friend of the dead wife!!
Another factor I loved about the book was how the autor has portrayed the Indian Intelligence to be! I mean when you live in a time filled with scams and scandals you have a fictional acting director of the Indian intelligence to be an exetremenly intelligent and a politically savy guy who puts his country in front of himself…then there is Inspector Hassan – the man who literally looses his nervous system to protect the nation and its people!! I would like to see such heroes in real life, especially in times like now!!
Kudos to the author who seems to have done a lots of reserach on global politics and history and has effectively married the two! A thrilling read for fans of spy thrillers and those who enjoy books like the “Bourne” series by Rovert Ludlum!