Book Review:The Thugs and a Courtesan by Muktha Singh zocchi

Title:The Thugs & a Courtesan
Author:Muktha Singh Zocchi
Price:195 INR
Source: review copy via Think Why Not
Publisher:Shristi Publishers 
Genre:Historical Fiction
 I have had the opportunity to review quite a number of desi (Indian Writing in English) works by first time authors in the recent past.While some of them had been really good,the majority of them were either passable or slightly above average works.So,when I got this new book to review from the wonderful people at 'Think Why Not',quite naturally I was expecting the book to fall into either of the above categories.
         ' The Thugs and a Courtesan' is a difficult book to review.The author has attempted to pen a historical fiction with the 'thug culture' as it's backdrop. Set in the 18 th century India,the book traces the journey of a thug/nomad (left to the reader's discretion)named Firangia and in the process gives a bird's eye view of life in pre-British India.In the course of the journey,he fights,romances,imbibes virtues and protects his fellow men.Well,that's all what I remember as far as the basic plot of the book is concerned.There are many sub-plots woven into the narrative with some of them being cute and short love stories.
           The book has got a novel premise and the writer deserves applause for trying something like this in her debut work.The mystery surrounding Chanda Bhai's character has come out really well.But as it's often said,good ideas don't necessarily translate to blockbusters. 
            The basic problem of this book is that it's too confusing.There are far too many poorly written characters (even the protagonist is not well etched out),innumerable sub plots with absolutely no connection to the central plot and the story loses focus in more than a couple of occasions.What makes the matters even worse is the manner in which the story is told.The writing is way over the top and at times too self-indulgent.A 'heavy' subject like this would have worked big time had the author resorted to a somewhat 'light' treatment.In short,'Thugs and a ....' is not an easy read by any stretch of imagination.

Verdict: On the whole,'The Thugs and a Courtesan' belongs to the 'could have been better' category.Rating- 2/5. 

PS: I would like to thank the wonderful people at 'Think Why Not' for sending me a review copy of this book.


1 comment:

  1. and I was kind of interested in the book.
    thank you for the warning :)


Keep reading, keep suggesting, keep commenting

Sesishi Yokomizo's The Inugami Curse

  Thanks to the overnight success of the English Translations of kiego Higashino, many forgotten classics from Japanese Mystery have started...