Sunday, November 18, 2012

Book Review: The Bankster by Ravi Subramanian

There is a word I hardly use to describe a book- Unputdownable. Unfortunately Ravi Subramanian has forced me to use it. Ravi's 4th book is a pleasure to read and get engrossed in. All I can say is I'm happy I'm finally off the spell this book had cast on me.

Thanks to this autographed book came as a pleasant surprise and how pleased I am. For a first this book has made me take interest in his previous books which (excuse my ignorance) I have never heard of.  His book "I Bought the Monk's Ferrari" in my opinion should get an award for the smartest title's I've come across. 

Coined as the John Grisham of banking by the Wall Street Journal, Ravi leaves no stone unturned to expose and exploit the various ways in which bankers play with the trust of the customers. His in-depth knowledge into ways how fraudulent accounts are operated make the reader think and ask himself the simple yet important question – Is my money in my bank safe? The nexus operating these accounts and the implications are enough to get the world spinning if not crashing. The Bankster (which probably is a combination of Banker and Gangster) revolves around Karan Punjabi – an ex-banker and now a journalist with the TOI to investigate the mysterious deaths of his close friends and aides. Karan soon realizes that death is just one part of the mystery; he’s dealing with people you shouldn’t mess around with, that too spread across 4 places in the world. With only 2 days to his disposal Karan smartly and stealthily nabs the culprit who in the best words said is least expected. 

Going by the number of Catholic characters in this book you wonder whether you are actually reading an Indian novel but nevertheless it doesn’t take anything away from it. This book is a sheer delight both - for people who love or don’t love thrillers, for bankers and for those who have no knowledge of banking. If however like me, you land up in no-man’s land you know you have lots to learn and also are aware of where things are heading. 

A section which I could very closely relate to is the frustration shown and felt by an employee when his/her manager doesn’t understand. With no one to approach and despite your consistent performance others are favoured the pain felt is heart wrenching. It somehow brought me to tears. 

If there's something I don’t like about this book is how the story unfolds as it approaches the end. While I understand the need for the culprit to be a surprise and shock but I would have loved if I was allowed to be a detective myself. Rather than just announcing who the culprit is, let the reader make sense of the facts and evidence that lies before him. A greater involvement in the book would have made this a classic. But given the immense potential of Ravi I’m sure that will soon be the case in the next book.

This review is a part of the Book Reviews Program at . Participate now to get free books!

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