September 29, 2012

Book Review: The Krishna Key by Ashwin Sanghi

Title: The Krishna Key
Author: Ashwin Sanghi
Publisher: Westland
Pages: 485
Price: Rs. 250

Summary: Thriller to reveal the hidden Krishna secret – The Krishna Key and a murder mystery
Dr. Anil Varshney, an archaeologist working in Kailbangan hands over one seal each to his research and academic friends for safe keeping. The four seals together should fit in to a base plate that contains the final clue to a hidden secret, referred to as ‘The Krishna Key.’ The base plate, he tells his friend, Dr Ravi Mohan Saini, a professor at St Stephen’s College in New Delhi, is locked away in a locker. Dr. Ravi Mohan Saini is the main signatory and will be contacted if anything happens to Dr.Anil Varshney.
Soon, Saini is held responsible for Dr. Varshney’s murder, as Saini was the last person to see Dr.Varshney alive. The cops have enough proof to convict Saini for Dr.Varshney’s murder. Saini’s doctoral student, Priya Ratnani with her leading criminal lawyer father’s help, creates opportunity to escape. Each time Saini is close to finding someone to vouch for his innocence, the person is killed and he becomes the prime suspect. A young man, Taraak Vakil believes he is the tenth avataar of Vishnu – Kalki. What or who makes him believe so? What is his mission? Will Saini be able to find the real killer and discover the secret of The Krishna Key? Will Priya and her father be able to give required assistance to Saini to find the killer?
The novel is fast paced, written in simple language and the author has put in great effort to link facts with fiction. He has researched well, though there are certain historical facts, I couldn’t personally agree with. The story, though very interesting, at times were overloaded with historical facts and mathematical calculations, as I felt it diverts attention from the centre theme of the story.   The times I felt unreal was when Saini took good amount of time to explain the science and history to the people he met, while on the run and trying to prove his innocence. I was wondering if a real person would ever spent time on sharing his knowledge to peer or colleagues instead of trying to clear his name from the mess.
In certain chapters, I could relate to the Krishna storyline, given at the start of each chapter with the fiction. But, as I progressed and moved towards the end of the book, I felt I read enough of Mahabharata. It could be because I amn’t an enthusiastic history loving person although a reasonable amount of history is interesting.
To sum up, The Krishna Key is a good read, thrilling to find the real killer, the unexpected turns particularly in the mid-of the story and the surprising historic revelation – the secret to the Krishna Key. I managed to read 485 pages in three days because I couldn’t wait to know what’s happening next!

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