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A Love Life so Painful
Once Upon the Tracks of Mumbai
Those enchanted four and half years
One and a Half Wife
The Bankster
Love You Forever : Only In That Way
Nine Lives
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The Fortune Hunters
I Too Had A Love Story..
Ladies Coupé
The Krishna Key
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Of Tattoos and Taboos!
Left from Dhakeshwari
I loved a Street woman
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Monday, August 12, 2013

Compass Box Killer by Piyush Jha

Title: Compass Box Killer
Author: Piyush Jha 
Publisher: Rupa Publications
Date:  2013
Price: Rs. 195
Snapshot: This is a single story novel unlike Mumbaistan where inspector Virkar(the smart inspector with a constant of self evaluation) is out chasing a criminal who leaves a hint about whom he will kill next, making the case interesting for him and the police. But why does he do so? and a lot more thrill is what this story has to offer.

The Story from the Critics Perspective: A police inspector is murdered, everyone thinks food poisoning, the case can easily pass off as that, but the killer leaves a compass box with the hint of the next victim and sets the police on chase. Though the next victim is a doctor and under strict police supervision, the killer still manages to hit the target, with another note in a compass box. Well yes this time the person is a well known NGO personality. He is kept under complete security but the killer seems to love challenges. Not only does he keep giving hints to the police but manages to hit the target, more fiercely, in the last case at the public gathering. Then the killer halts, his next hint is not clear but a code.

Why is he doing so? What connects an inspector, a doctor and an NGO personality? Why if he can murder brilliantly and get away with it does he choose to tip off the police? Who is "The Compass Box Killer"? Who is his next target? Well for all that read the book.
The Review: 
Positives: Inspector Virkar and his character has been well sketched. The plot is good. The killing methods are amazing (I do appreciate intelligence in all forms :P). In most parts you will enjoy the book more than any crime series you have ever watched. Also the suspense is well kept, I couldn't guess the killer till his identity was revealed.

First of all I have read Piyush Jha's Mumbaistan and loved it. I has rated it 4/5 and looked eagerly to read this one. However it failed to match the thrill of Mumbaistan. The reasons I believe are:

1. The character of the reporter Raashi could have been sketched better. The twist involving her was very predictable. 

2. Too descriptive at certain places. The author would go on and on describing at certain places where all the reader needs is pace. Some of it could have been avoided totally, making it crisper. This was the major drawback of the book in my opinion.

Piyush Jha himself had set his standard of writing a thriller via Mumbaistan so high, that raised the bars of expectations which wasn't unfortunately met by this book.
The Verdict: An entertaining thriller. 3 stars on 5. Would still recommend Mumbaistan over this one.

About the Author:

Piyush Jha is an acclaimed film director, ad filmmaker and the author of the bestselling novel, Mumbaistan. A student political leader at university, he pursued a career in advertising management after acquiring an MBA degree. Later, he switched tracks, first to make commercials for some of the countrys largest brands, and then to write and direct feature films. His films include Chalo America, King of Bollywood and Sikandar. 
He lives in his beloved Mumbai, where he can often be found walking the streets that inspire his stories.


  1. This is the first book I read by the author..Haven't read Mumbaistan.... I felt the book was like a movie script and less like a book...I could just imagine this being made into a movie :)