As you know, from time to time we share on this blog our views on contemporary books that reflect on the real-life issues. These books often discuss the darkness of human nature and how it affects our society.
Recently, we were introduced to the profile of Ajinkya Bhasme, who is an alumnus of IIT Mumbai and a multi-talented artist who currently works in Human Resources. He has ventured into writing for grown-ups with his first book When the Devil whispers, which belongs to a psychological horror – crime thriller genre.
|Book Title||:||When the Devil Whispers
Tagline: A Crime Thriller Inspired by Real Events
|Publishers||:||Notion Press (23 January 2019)|
|# of Pages||:||
2195 KB 178 (Kindle EBook)
|# of Chapters||:||30|
Based on true events from past, this book was launched for readers on 11th October, 2018 and recently Team Thinkerviews was provided a copy for our unbiased reviews.
The cover page is your first getaway into the world of books, and for many readers, it is a big factor in deciding whether to buy the book or not. So it is a balancing act to get the cover page that fits the story and is also attractive to the readers.
Since this is a psychological horror crime story, I think the cover page is suitably designed to show only part of a human face with a haunting eye which is the prominent feature of this image and draws you in right away.
The cover page is clean and riveting and those who are looking for a crime thriller cum horror will find it appealing.
The book starts with a very apt quote, and so we would like to share the opening here:
To err is human; to forgive, divine.
And then there are some crimes that are so harrowing and cold-blooded, that even the devil gets terrified to walk alone in the dark.
Since it is a suspense thriller, let us try to keep the spoilers at bay the best we can.
We meet a young woman named Shalini, who is just waking up from a traumatic experience and her memory is a bit hazy. She is in a terribly foul, dungeon like place and she discovers that there are other captives there. Eventually, she remembers the details of her own abduction from her home. Shalini goes through tough time before she can find an opportunity to escape, only to land straight back into the hands of bad guys.
Meanwhile, Shalini’s mother Alka is worried about her daughter and comes to Shalini’s house to see that she is OK, only to discover a corpse of her husband in Shalini’s refrigerator. The police is called in and a curious “cat and mouse” game starts between Alka and the trio of police officers handling the case. We learn that Alka is an anxiety patient, heavily dependent on her pills, and she is hiding things from police.
Another parallel thread in the book contains the scary parts, as we meet the bad guys, e.g., Manoj with his ghosts (literally), conspiracy sisters Smita and Radhika, walls covered in blood, dismembered corpses and a lot more. There is a mastermind moving these men and women who are responsible for abduction and murder of multiple children.
As all the characters approach their breaking points, the story comes together, but time is running out for the victims…
As mentioned above, the book is based on true events and real men and women who abducted and used and murdered little children for little profit and with no remorse and no guilt. The case made the history as it resulted into murder penalties after a very long time in India. There really are some crimes which are unforgivable and some criminals are beyond any psychological justifications, almost wanting you to believe in existence of the Devil to have inspired such heinous acts.
As the author says at end of the book:
At times like these, when the world is at a loss and has been stripped of humanity, one may challenge the very existence of God. And if one must believe in Him, then He might as well be the most insidious force that humans will ever encounter.
Like any good thriller, this book is also written like the first few chapters are scattered pieces of a puzzle and it is only after you have read a little way into the book that you start finding connections and making patterns. To some extent, the story is simple and so the USP of the book is the storytelling to create the sequences such that the sense of thrill and chase mounts as the suspense builds up and eventually you have that little jolt of discovery when the culprits are caught and the mastermind is found. Instead of a straightforward, conventional story telling, the author uses flashbacks, different narrators, series of text messages, etc. to create this tale.
Ajinkya has done a good job of creating the characters such that everyone appears to have an ulterior motive at some stage and the lines between the victims and the criminals are blurred sufficiently to keep the story moving. Of course, sometimes it does result in bit of “lack of consistency” on characterization.
But you may accept these inconsistencies if you think how strange real life can be if the circumstances of people change too quickly. The police officers in this book are different from police procedural as they are not following the letter of law. They try to think like the criminals and take some inventive steps to lay the traps for their target.
Most crime investigations focus a lot on the motive, so what is the motive here – Money, greed, being a psychopath?
While most of the time we would all like to believe in the goodness of love, we all know that it very easily leads to jealousy, possession, obsession and the tendency to destroy what you can’t have. And spurned love is one of the strong reasons that drives the characters in this book:
You know, this thing called love is such a strange thing. It makes people do crazy things… buy expensive gifts, sometimes kidnap… maybe kill.
— — — — —
The world is no heaven for angels; the angels either end up destroyed or dead.
— — — — —
And since the hunters here are devoid of any human feelings, there is no hope for their victims. They end up doing things they had never dreamed of doing in order to stay alive…
— — — — —
It is all about survival at this point. Try staying alive.
As you can see in some of the samples above, the language is simple and effective. There are some proofreading errors that could have been avoided, but none of it hampers your experience of reading. With its length of just over 250 pages, the book was still a very swift read and won’t take you more than a few hours.
The author sets scenes with quite a bit of goriness when highlighting the horror of the situation and so the book is not for you, if you don’t like bloody murders and haunting houses… I must confess I made sure to read it during the day and not at night 🙂
Reading this book reminded us of reading the below-mentioned books:
- Done with her… Chirasree Bose
- The Last Attractor of Chaos by Abhinav Singh
- Natasha Mehra Must Die By Anand Sivakumaran
A book recommended for all readers who enjoy reading about the dark realities of the life and enjoy suspense thrillers…
Around 7 to 7.5 out of 10
Quick Purchase Links:
- Buy Book From Amazon India – Kindle Ebook
- Buy Book From Amazon India – Paperback
- Buy Book From Amazon US – Kindle Ebook
- Buy Book From Amazon US – Paperback
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