Thrillers by Indian authors have a preset formula of a male protagonist leading the plot, a female protagonist who is like a decorative heroine in commercial Bollywood movies, and an unwanted love track followed by an action-packed climax. Yesterday’s ghost by Nikhil Pradhan breaks the stereotype with the uniqueness of the plot and unprecedented style of narration.
Yesterday’s Ghost by Nikhil Pradhan – Book Review
A team of spies named The Black Team set out to Sri Lanka for a secret operation against the LTTE. Little did they know that they would have to return home without a teammate. Upon return, they are disbursed irreversibly. No one got in touch with others for decades since the fateful day. But a letter at their doorsteps brings out a can of worms that would eventually stink in their lives. They set out to eliminate the threat despite having no clue about who it is.
The plot takes off with an interview with the officers in the team. The interviewer is ironically their kidnapper. A team of spies being interviewed by their kidnapper is perhaps the most unique plotline in Indian literature. The craft of the interview is the highlight of the book. The seamless dialogue delivery without melodrama and the switch between that interview and the past are depicted with artistic finesse.
The plot is action-packed without any literal actions. The scenario when the ex-officers are voluntarily presented before the kidnapper is established with utmost conviction. Special mention to the depiction of subtle demeanors and idiosyncrasies of the officers. The secrets unraveling one after the other incite the intrigue of the readers.
The hype created in the first half and the early second half of the book is lost in the climax. The climax drops the graph of the book as it seemed as if the author was searching in the dark.
This book is a collection of exquisite poems, monologues, playlists and pictures.