Nobody’s Child — by Kanchana Banerjee
Publisher: HarperCollins India
Price: Rs. 299 INR(Paperback), Rs. 227 INR (Kindle Edition)
ISBN: 978– 9353571306
Buy here: https://amzn.to/2KK64v0
A young woman is found on the streets of Mumbai, dazed and covered in wounds. Her mind is clearly addled by drugs. She tells a TV journalist that she is the famous singer Asavri Bhattacharya, the winner of the 2016 reality TV show Indian Koel. But as far as the world knows, Asavri died in a car accident soon after her win. Her body was cremated; her death mourned by the whole nation. As news spreads like wildfire, the press and public begin clamouring for answers. How can Asavri be alive? And if this is indeed the real Asavri, then who was cremated three years ago? And who is behind what happened to her? Is it Tanya, the first runner-up who wore the victor’s crown after Asavri was declared dead, or Rudra, Asavri’s ex-husband? Or is it Kamini Devi — the glamorous MP with a sinister plan? Or Avniel, the film journalist who shot to fame by writing Asavri’s biography soon after her death? And why does Asavri keep muttering the name Monty? Who is he? Nobody’s Child Is An Exhilarating And Chilling Story About The Dark Side Of Fame.
About the author:
Kanchana Banerjee lives in Gurgaon with her husband Sandeep and her three boys Rohan, Archie & Casper. In another life she used to write for various publications and companies, now she is a full time author. When not writing, she enjoys gardening and playing with her dogs. Nobody’s Child is her second book.
My take on the book:
Asavri who was the winner of the Indian Koel reality singing contest, believed to have died two years back in a brutal car accident is suddenly found by media in a battered condition. Tanya, the runner up of the contest and who got all the benefits and contracts with Asavri’s death is under scanner, so is her mother Kamini Pratap Singh, a powerful politician and businesswoman who is known to have her way with things. Avniel, the once struggling journalist and now author of best selling book, based on Asavri’s life, was the only person ever close to Asavri. His over enthusiasm to release a book immediately after Asvari’s death to build on her fame and people’s sentiments is reason enough for him to be a suspect himself.
But Asavri only keeps mentioning about Monty who was not her family nor a friend, but a name that she is now chanting. How did a dead person come back, only to be found in an extremely abused situation? Who was behind her disappearance and who orchestrated the whole plan in an attempt to benefit from it forms the rest of the story.
The blurb mentions the main suspects in this conspiracy and the first few pages seem to point the suspicion towards each of them, The story keeps alternating between the current timeline and the events that happened two years back when the reality show was underway with both of them mostly narrated by Avniel and Kamini. As the story progresses, the suspects keep increasing so as the possible reasons for whatever happened with Asavri.
The author keeps the suspense in tact for major part of the book with only few clues thrown in occasionally. The characters are realistic and the grey shades only emphasize human greed and manipulative traits. Avniel, Kamini, Asavri, have multiple layers to their characters, revealed slowly with the narration. However, the violence and abuse may not be suitable for everyone’s taste, as some sequences can be heart-wrenching. Also, the backdrop of a reality show and crime and conspiracy around such events can sound cliched for those who have read such stories.
Pick this one for a gripping story around media, money, greed, fame, and crime, with some well sketched characters.
This review is part of the Blogchatter Book Review Program.
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