Six Suspects – Vikas Swarup

My Rating – 2.5/5

Summary –

A high profile murder. Six suspects. All had motive and opportunity. All six had a weapon. Who is it?

Review –

Vicky Rai, industrialist, son of Uttar Pradesh’s home minister and a notorious law breaker is shot point blank in a party at his farmhouse. There are six suspects who had weapon and opportunity. – A corrupt bureaucrat, a mobile thief, an American, a tribal, a famous starlet and his own father.

My advice – read this book as a novel than a murder mystery. You will enjoy it more. The form of the narration is interesting. There are six separate stories. Each tells us about a suspect leading to the motive and outlining the evidence against him. At some point the stories cross each other and lead finally to Vicky Rai’s party at his farmhouse where he is murdered. Vikas Swarup has made liberal use of current controversial cases where the rich and famous were able to evade the clutches of the law.  The cases for which Vicky Rai gained notoriety strongly resemble the Sanjeev Nanda BMW hit and run case, Black buck killing and of course the infamous Jessica Lal murder. You can also find references to Nitish Katara and Satyendra Dubey murder cases. The only hitch that I felt was the real mystery comes too late and lasts too short. The six individual stories though entertaining in themselves don’t really act as a precursor for building up the mystery. The tension that normally should keep mounting in a murder mystery with every turning page is rather missing. Also I think you can guess the killer fairly early if you are a fan of Agatha Christie and have devoured her books like me.

Like Q&A, Swarup’s famous first novel (filmed into Oscar winner Slumdog Millionaire), Six Suspects is an ambitious attempt to tell six separate yet inter connected stories woven around the miscarriage of justice that pervades India today. Unfortunately for me, Six Suspects flattered to deceive.

Thank you for reading. I appreciate your time.

The book is available cheapest in India at –

1. Indiaplaza 2.Infibeam  3. Coinjoos 4, Bookadda

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