Today up for review is The Mogul by Vish Dhamija from Harper Collins India. A courtroom based drama that Vish Dhamija is known for, it promises to deliver to justify the tag of Indian Jefferey Archer given to him.
When Prem Bedi, India’s third richest businessman finds out that his ex-wife, Rhea and her husband have been murdered while he was away in Thailand, he doesn’t really anticipate the entangled media circus that would follow. He hasn’t seen Rhea since the last divorce hearing 12 years ago and is flabbergasted when the suspect list his name. Despite him not being present in the country at the time of the murders, circumstantial evidence links him to the gruesome event, putting him in the spotlight. Is this a premeditated attempt to ruin Prem Bedi? Or are the evidences correctly holding him responsible?
The book starts off with the murders mentioned above and is taken through the plot via point of views of different characters. That actually helps the reader know more about the backstory and the main protagonist through different perspectives instead of a self narration. The courtroom drama aspect is enjoyable and if you are a fan of legal fiction, would rightfully enthral you.
What I actually thought missing was the depth of the protagonist. He is showcased as someone who is too good to be real which didn’t sit right with me. He is cheated on, but let’s it go. He’s taken for a ride by his wife, he says nothing. His business secrets are leaked but he stays mum. All this was done to make him the good guy, so as to not sense that there was something inherently wrong with him. However, it works in the opposite way it was intended to. Too good to be true kind of guys don’t exist, especially in murder mysteries.
If the author had shown him under a little red light, with some flaws here and there, it would have made it impossible to predict the climax. With so much done to make him such a good guy, Dhamija ruined what could have been a perfect mystery.
The language was easy and the narration was easy to follow. The fact that this has grammatical and typo errors, from a publisher as huge as Harper Collins was a downer.
I did enjoy the overall plot and characters which did great from the start to the end. The climax, once I got over the predictability, was a good twist. I would have liked more in the end, to know what exactly it was that drove him to do what he did or how the whole story came about.
All in all, I think it’s a 3.5 star out of 5 kind of a read. It could have been very Jefferey Archer-esque but the predictability kind of ruined the fun.
Until next time!