One fine day as I was sitting idly in my hostel room I decided to enroll for BlogAdda’s book review program. It was a win-win situation. First I would get to read a book for free (believe me we Marwaris have an obsession with anything ‘FREE’). In a way it is just like Harshita from the book I picked for my first review called “The Bankster”
I had purchased the previous books from the same author so the idea of a FREE book was definitely an instance I can quote in my “Customer Loyalty” write-ups in the CRM courses. For starters, I am not a very big fan of lovey dovey novels or the typical Hindi masala type ones. Thrill and suspense gives me the much needed push and let me finish the book without leaving it halfway through.
“The Bankster” was a book that I finished in 2 shifts. First time I had to leave reading it because my eyes had swollen and sleep overcame me. But I was able to finish the book yesterday while I was in train (much to my fellow passenger’s annoyance)
Like the previous books by the same author this novel is centered on the banking industry. The differentiating factor is the inside the knowledge about the industry. To an outsider the jargons might look Latin, Greek and Hebrew but the author does a credible job of explaining them in the simplest of details. Even technological questions are answered with much patience for the beautiful Jacqueline.
I do not want to go into the storyline as you can clearly read the synopsis given at the back of the book. But the idea of connecting a Nuclear Plant, a Global Bank and Blood Diamonds deserves special mention. The strength of the book is the gripping narrative and an intricately woven story. It makes you think and then it makes you think some more. When you have thought enough it leaves you dumbstruck because whatever you had thought might not even be relevant.
The most interesting part according to me was the suicide/killing of one of the prime characters in the book hanging from a bridge. The narrative and the portrayal of the witnesses at this point of time were simply fabulous. I can still recollect the whole episode running through my mind like a movie.
Another interesting part was the boardroom discussions between Kavya and Karan. I think I secretly have a crush on Kavya (this will be taken on a personal capacity with the author so let’s leave this here). The flirtatious nature and the speed at which the 2nd half of the book flows is truly addictive and I had a tough time convincing my fellow passengers that I am reading something that has the potential to save a few lives.
Having said the above, my book review cannot be complete without suggesting a few areas of improvement (I am no expert and if you think the above has already consumed your time please do not bother to read ahead). First of all, I would have liked if a bit more attention was given to the characters of Indrani and Raymond. Indrani was an interesting character and could have been explored more. Raymond though was present throughout the book was kept in the dark. It would have been great to have known such a maverick person more. Secondly, the epilogue was a bit of dampener and so many good things happening was not easily digestible. Lastly, in some parts of the book I could see narrative changing suddenly and I had to reread again to make sense of what had happened. It could have been taken care so that the readers might have a smooth experience.
But these are just minor observations on a nearly perfect book. Someone has rightly said that it is the imperfections that make us perfect.
I would advise you not to read “The Bankster” if you are hoping to find some love induced teenagers in a bank. I would advise you not to read the book if you want to find a Hindi movie ending and cheerleaders dancing. I would not advise you to read the book if you think you will find some interesting tips how to join the banking industry. (In fact it might demotivate you)
But if you want to read a meaningful book, if you want to read something that will make you think, if you want to read something that will make you question the existing way things are done, if you want to be entertained by a gripping storyline, if you want to spend some quality time with a book and not rule about it later, if you want to genuinely fall in love with some fiction characters then go ahead and pick up “The Bankster”