Ten Days by Leena Nandan

Title:Ten Days
Author:Leena Nandan
Publisher:Wisdom Tree/Chlorophyll
Price:295 INR
Source:Review Copy (Publisher) via alop
Genre:Crime Fiction

           IAS officer- turned- author Leena Nandan's Ten Days is a (wannabe) crime thriller which narrates the strange incidents happening in the life of it's protagonist,Tina-a young,beautiful executive working in a call centre(24*365).Set in the innovative backdrop a BPO,this desi thriller tries to expose the 'grey' side of the 'new-age' professionals!  

       Tina is a bright call centre executive who is assisting Inspector Vikram in a cyber fraud case which had happened in their office not so long ago.Thanks to her smart,uber cool attitude and occassionally blunt demenaour,she has made enough of admirers and enemies in her workplace itself.Certain unpleasant incidents happen in her office(rape of a female colleague,arrest and suicide of a young executive and the death of the much senior scientist,Dr Maken) and pretty soon she finds herself stalked by a mysterious intruder.Parallely,Inspector Vikram gets  to know that his ex(Leila,the daughter of Dr Maken) is also in danger.Though the death of her father(Dr Maken) seems to be attributed more to a natural cause,he realises that there is more to it than what is apparently visible. 

        Coming to the good things about the book-Well,'Ten Days' has got a rather fresh theme.The English is pretty simple and conversational and for those of you who are looking for a book which won't weigh you down with it's literary pretensions ,this one might be the ideal choice.The investigation part(even with it's ample share of loop holes) is quite decently written and the suspense is well maintained till the end of the book.The final revelation(though not out of the world or anything) is also quite unexpected.The Cover design is also pretty well done and suits the overall mood of the work.

        The book has it's own share of flaws though.For an aspiring crime thriller,’Ten days’ is too slow to thrill.Apart from a couple of seemingly unrelated(crimes) incidents,nothing much really happens in the first hundred pages or so and too many pages are spent on describing Tina's childhood friends and the office politics at 24*365.Also,there are a lot of poorly developed,un-interesting characters(Deepthi,Rita,Jeet et al) and a lot of unnecessary detailing(the portions describing Tina's childhood might have been retained for it's inherent charm,but I honestly feel that those portions only served to slacken the pace of the narrative)which could have been easily done away with(the school girl club/password thing scenes looked straight out of an Enid Blyton/Secret Seven adventure and adds nothing to the narrative).Though the basic plot is somewhat innovative,the way it has been handled leaves much to be desired.The author seems to be confused on what to focus and what not to.As a result,she ends up confusing the reader.The stalker track(which reminds one of atleast a couple of American thriller novels -Sheldon's 'Tell Me Your Dreams' and Nicci French's 'Killing Me softly',to name a few)lacks fizz and fails to leave the desired impact .It'll neither horrify you nor scare you,thanks to the lack of focus on the principal track from the part of the author. All the genre cliches are also there in place-be it the investigator with a troubled past or the damsel in distress for which he slowly develops a liking for(in this case,for the second time!).C'mmon,we have read all this before!There are a couple of cringe worthy dialogues too.Sample this-“We’re a dynamic bunch of people here,sorry we’re dynamite actually”(!!!!!!).Though the book is a little over 200 pages long,I took almost two weeks to complete reading it.I think that sort of explains what is wrong with the book.

Bottomline-On the whole,'Ten Days' is an okay read.With a rather innovative premise and an interesting theme,it had the potential to be a real page turner.Sad that it's not,in the present form.I'm giving it a 2.5 out of 5.



  1. Ah, sounded like a mix of lot of other thriller works! Could be good for traveling though, no?



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