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Book Review: Prisoner of Yakutsk (The Netaji Bose Mystery) by Shreyas Bhave

You must have heard a lot about Netaji Shubhas Chandra Bose, the founder of INA. He was a prominent figure in India’s struggle for independence history. Since ages many speculations and assumptions have been circulated about his sudden disappearance. Did he die in the plane crash in Taiwan or did he escape and never made it to India? Questions are still alive! Even today Netaji Shubhas Chandra Bose is a mystery. No solid evidences have been brought up against his sudden disappearance. Anyway, not many authors have used Bose as a subject matter in their fictional books. Well, today we have this fiction – Prisoner of Yakutsk by Shreyas Bhave – this book’s concurrent theme is to find what happened to Bose.


According to our opinion, this fast-paced and well-written novel is mix of historical fiction, Bose mystery, and suspense thriller. Overall, the end output is captivating. In the novel, you will find parallel narration – the major ones are of Jay Rasbihari and his grandfather Mr. Singh.

Jay Rasbihari is a successful and rich entrepreneur. He moves out of home to find whereabouts his grandparents, including his mother. Since he is into data and trending technology related field, he makes use of his knowledge, with a help of a company, to trace down his ancestor’s history i.e. who were they and what happened to them. Read the novel to know how far he succeeds with his quest?

In another important quest, we see a group of five people; the head is none other than Jay Rasbihari’s grandfather. Well, the group disappears when it’s sent to Japan and Taiwan to find about Bose. What really happened to the group – did they get to their destination or not? The group was sent and sponsored by Sardar Patel and Pandit Nehru. When it disappeared all of sudden, people showed no interest to find them about, just like Bose mystery it was also assumed something nightmarish.

However, to Jay it matters – and in the current time – he takes a quest to find about them. Well, then what is that Yakutsk (Russian) connection? How did he land up there and what secrets await him there, all makes up for a riveting read and it may excite you to discover all from the novel.

Since there are many characters and around two parallel stories, you would invariably force to think which one is better? Clearly, the story of group is simply amazing and the brilliance of author dazzles in it, unarguably. Their struggle and investigation and chemistry with one another outpace the story of Jay and Tanya. Also, the part of Jay has been stretched up for so long – the author could have made it short, in snatches. Anyway, narration and language usage keep this novel intact and good going.

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