Monday, 5 May 2014

End of story? by Arjun Shekhar: a review

A television and the interesting title of the book along with a simple bold black background is what you notice in Arjun Shekhar’s recent book End of Story? Well, the question mark in the end of the title very well keeps the reader wanting to read the book as soon as they set their eyes on it.


According to the back cover- Shukrat Ali, a newsanchor at Khulasa, the ‘tabloid’ current affairs channel, is out of job. TV channels across the country have closed down as a consequence of a Supreme Court ban on electronic advertising. An inquiry is on regarding the emergence of sinister new form of ads the media has dubbed ‘propagandas’, which uses compelling subliminal messages to subtly rewire people’s minds and influence their actions. Even as Shukrat grapples with the question: ‘How does an anchor move on?’ he is summoned to testify in the trial concerning the killing of his ex-boss, Satya Saachi Sengupta, the mysterious and towering figure in his  life, whose connections with this insidious mind manipulation scheme can no longer be denied. Being a key witness present at the scene of the crime, Shukrat must prepare to bare all before the court and tread carefully lest his testimony boomerangs on him.


The story, in the beginning seems just like a testimony, a practice of what the protagonist, Shukrat has to say in the court about his ex-boss’s death the day he is summoned. The testimony includes the happenings that lead to the death of Satya Saachi Sengupta and all the revelations.


The wonderful style the whole script is written gives a feeling of secrecy throughout the book which plays the main catalyst in the people’s minds to read through the pages word by word and eagerly wait for the end, gripping every event.


There were places in the book where to relate to certain incidents, the readers might also flip the pages backwards to ensure they haven’t missed anything and the readers are sure to be left wide eyes and open mouthed with every revelation.


My favourite character throughout the book was Shukrat’s daughter, Quayamat mostly referred to as Q in the book, mainly because I could relate to that 12 year old kid playing a very important role in the whole book.


I would actually congratulate the author for thinking such a wonderful and interesting concept and presenting it in such a way. The end is something every reader awaits for and which leaves the reader thinking “Oh My God!” for a very long time and that is, according to me, a job well done by the writer.
Apart from the ‘n’ number of positivity’s about the book, at some parts; I felt the book was a bit stretched as it gave out a bit of unnecessary information. Nonetheless, I loved every part of the book. Waiting for more to come from the writer, I would rate this book a 4.5 out of 5.


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