Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Review of 'God is a Gamer' by 'Ravi Subramanian'

Blurb: Aditya runs a gaming company that is struggling to break even. A banker slips off a
highrise building, plunging to her death. The finance minister has made some promises
that he is finding hard to keep. The LTTE has unleashed terror in America that sends
the FBI on a wild goose chase, bringing them to Mumbai.
Enter Varun, parttime drug dealer and fulltime genius. He turns around the gaming
company before disaster strikes. Meanwhile, the investigators plunge headlong into
the shady world of bitcoins and the Dark Net, websites that only exist for illegal
transactions—drugs, sex and money. God Is a Gamer culminates in a stunning climax
where money means nothing, assassination is taught by the ancient Greeks, and nothing
is as it seems.

Verdict: ‘God is a Gamer’ is the first bitcoin thriller written by Ravi Subramanian. Being Indian’s one famous thriller writer, the author has presented a crime thriller covering a vast area from banking, gaming to ATM heist and bitcoin frauds.

The cover looks stunning and will automatically turn heads of the readers. As almost half of the incident takes place in the US, the white house in the cover seems relatable. Unlike Ravi Subramanian’s earlier books, this doesn’t have a mention of bank in the name. The name sounds interesting and the readers will appreciate the author at the end for the game he has played with the readers mind. ‘Indian’s No. 1 thriller writer’ tag in the cover will raise the expectation amongst the readers. The blurb was good and interesting too but doesn’t say anything about the story line.

The book starts with the heads of MasterCard and Visa, seeking help from an American Politician to avoid their loss in the Russian Market. As soon as the reader starts the book, they will understand that this book is also set with the back drop of a bank, just the name doesn’t have the term. The murder of a close aide of the US president will keep the readers hooked from the beginning. Loads of incidents follow, a top banker commits suicide, an ATM heist happens in New York openly and a senior banker dies in an incident. A few more similar incidents follows in the frequent chapters which will keep the reader busy and one question will linger in their head repeatedly, how are the incidents linked?

The bitcoin was mentioned in the first half of the book and has been described wonderfully. Even those who have never heard of the term, would easily go with the flow. The mention of the originals names of people from the CEO of Apple, the RBI Governor to the President of America gives the book a realistic touch. The author has quite efficiently harmed the plot and disclosed the exact amount of details which will keep the readers guessing till the end. As the book heads towards the end, it picks the speed and the readers can very well intercept that something big is coming their way at the end.

But the end was not that grand and not up to the expectation. The author has proficiently made the readers believe that they have found the culprit and the book is going to end the way the readers have anticipated. But the readers couldn’t find the answer of the question asked in the cover of the book, ‘Is revenge a crime’ until they read the very last page.

The frequent distribution of the chapters makes the book crisp but could also confuse the readers because of the frequent jump of scenes. I felt the author has introduced too many characters and couldn’t connect all the dots till the end. There were few unanswered questions and loose ends. After the initial introduction at the first half the bitcoin takes a back seat in the middle and hardly played any crucial part at the end. So the story line couldn’t match up with the tag bitcoin thriller.

Final Words: Ravi Subramanian has done it again with his new thriller and have mesmerized the readers from the core with his experienced writing. The speed of the plot, the vast area of crime it has covered and the unanticipated thrill towards the end, makes it a hit.

Title: God is a Gamer
Author: Ravi Subramanian
Publisher: Penguin
Page Count: 310
My Rating: 4.25/5

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