An insidious sequence of events, twists and turns set beautifully to trap and engage the reader from the start to the very end. Ravi has managed to make sure that the element of surprise and anxiety never settles in the readers mind till the very last and ensured that predictability is abolished entirely. The Bankster is a true mystery in all its completeness and essence that can be set apart from the rest as a resonating example of what a mystery must and should be.
Bankers build their careers on trust, or so everyone thinks, till a series of murders threaten to destroy the reputation that the Greater Boston Global Bank (GB2) has built over the years. Who is behind these killings, and what is their motive? When Karan Panjabi, press reporter and ex-banker, digs deeper, he realizes that he has stumbled upon a global conspiracy with far reaching ramifications a secret that could not only destroy the bank but also cast a shadow on the entire nation. With only thirty-six hours at his disposal, he must fight the clock and trust no one if he is to stay alive and uncover the truth.
The story ensues from the diamond mines of Angola driven by a covert CIA agent and it passes hands to Vikram Bahl and comes Home to Mumbai where most of it is set. It later wanders off to the Europe pursuing a series of unfortunate yet seemingly unrelated events. The story set amongst the employees in the upper echelons of the Greater Boston Global Bank passes on suspicion as if in a relay race, making it almost impossible for the reader to arrive at a preconceived guess of the mystery man. Something that most mystery writes miss now a days is where Ravi Subramanian scores tons.
The story though extremely realistic has some minor flaws never the less, The story does lack a true protagonist Karan Panjabi, the Banker turned reporter who is supposedly the hero of the tale come way after the middle of the story and almost to the end. His entrance is so feeble and uncared for that no one knows he is the protagonist till he solves the mystery. No character sketch, no intensity of feeling, no nothing of our protagonist is given anywhere. All on a sudden he drops in with a girl and takes charge of the story leaving the readers feeling lost and somewhat deprived. He could have done much good by introducing Karan in the start and channeling the story through him than from various unambiguous sources.
This particular defect extends to all of the characters and is the single most disastrous the writer made with the book. Almost all of his characters are uncharted and lacks depth. The only person whose character has been examined would be Vikram bahl that to as a consequence of certain events and not as part of a dedicated interpretation of the character by the author.
Setting that apart the story is magnificently chartered and beautifully distributed across, Mumbai, Vienna and the Middle-East and a handful of well-placed characters. The highest point for the story is its unpredictability which is well supplemented and supported by Ravi’s characters. The Bankster is a recommended read by me and is much more than just a financial thriller, the mystery and action adds flavour to the whole story.
I give The Bankster by Ravi Subramanian a rating of : 3 out of 5
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