I was introduced to Bhaskar Chattopadhyay’s writing last year when I read his book Patang. This month, I had a brilliant opportunity to spend some time with his new mystery novel, Here Falls The Shadow. And just like last time, Bhaskar Chattopadhyay has left me speechless with his intelligence and twisted mind! Here Falls The Shadow is another masterpiece in Indian Mystery Novel section and hands down a must read for everyone!
With Here Falls The Shadow, Bhaskar has brought back the old world charm of detectives. This book revolves around our very own “Indian Sherlock” Maity, who has been asked to look into a mystery, set in a sleepy town of Jharkhand known as Nimdeora. Novelist Sangram Talukdar’s life has recently turned upside down when he receives a death threat. Things take an ugly turn when the two loyal dogs of his family are brutally murdered, with a clean, swift arrow to each of their throats.
Sangram requests Maity to come to Nimdeora and help him find out the culprit. He cannot go to the police due to an ugly family feud that has been going on for ages in Nimdeora. Maity tries his best to unravel the mystery, but each time he gets closer to finding the culprit, he/she slips out of his grip swiftly, leaving him and his companion Prakash “Indian Watson” flustered and irritated.
To unravel this mystery, Maity undertakes the task to dig deep into the past of Talukdar family and investigate the dreaded curse that has haunted them for years. But Maity and Prakash must act swiftly, because someone is watching them like a shadow, ready to strike for its next kill as soon as the opportunity presents.
The best things of Here Falls The Shadow are the premise of the story consisting of a sleepy down, two dead dogs, owner petrified for his life, a list of suspects including Sangram Talukdar’s brother Samar Talukdar and a curse that has haunted the family for long, sets the right mood for a mystery from the very first page itself. Nimdeora has been defined beautifully by Bhaskar, which makes the setting of the story even more spooky!
Each of the characters that come in Here Falls The Shadow is linked to the story somehow, which is something I absolutely love in a book. I am not a big fan of extra characters who only do a cameo in the story and then run off to hiding, leaving me with unanswered questions. And the best part which makes Here Falls The Shadow a brilliant read is the plot.
In a mystery novel, if I am able to catch the culprit since the beginning, it’s not a worthy read for me. But Bhaskar Chattopadhyay makes sure and also knows how to keep the readers hooked till the end. I had my money on some other character, but when the mystery unraveled I was left pleasantly shocked that even this could happen in the story! And if and when you read the book, you will be like “What?! He did this?!”. The brilliance of twisting characters and plot comes naturally to Bhaskar I must say.
The writing is swift and easy, without much hassle you will breeze through the book satiated with the outcome. I spent a week with this book and I was hardly able to keep it down! I also noticed that Bhaskar has grown as an author with Here Falls The Shadow and that’s a really nice change.
When it comes to flaws in Here Falls the Shadow, I am at a loss for words. For me, this book has everything that a mystery novel requires; an intelligent detective, a string of deliciously twisted suspects and the background setting which is mouthwatering. For me, Here Falls the Shadow is a perfect mystery novel.
Without wasting much time, I would like to conclude that Here Falls The Shadow is another entrant to my list of “Best Reads from 2017”. I am mentally smacking myself for not picking up Penumbra before this, but it’s never too late to read a good mystery, right?
Make sure to pick up your copy of Here Falls The Shadow, and definitely do not miss this one!