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Book Review – Caution! Twists Ahead! by Amresh Srivastava

Caution! Twists Ahead! by Amresh Srivastava is an intriguing collection of 7 short stories. The book delves deep in the sub genres of crime and suspense thriller. In a sense, most of the stories lend a crime noir narrative, however, with moral conscience. Though the level of crime isn’t sanguinary, the book lays emphasis on socially prevalent scams, frauds, and cons that most of the time went unnoticed.

Since the author hails from the banking sector, he leverages his background to take readers on some of the finely chiseled con stories that took place in the banking ambience by the staff and outsiders.

The first story is about a suitcase that goes missing from a corrupt senior government officer while traveling. This is a typical story of urban builders who collaborate with related officials for the benefit of both the parties. The irony in the story is that money doesn’t fuel everyone’s greed. The auto rickshaw driver has a heart touching story to stay away from the suitcase.

The next story goes as stealthy as it comes. It is about a family, two sisters…a tragedy strikes down one, the other sister turns a shrewd opportunistic to usurp everything that is inherently not her. But the fate had stored up something else for her. What?

The longest story in the book is about a lottery conman. It could be reckoned as a novella. A bank manager is caught between the dilemma of fate and duty. He is cheated by a lottery winner; however, the bank manager has to become a detective to save his job and honour? If con stories entice you, this one is a must read for you separately.

The book differs from typical hardcore crime fiction because it places a strong emphasis on the social and personal backdrop of the crime. The author subtly examines the result of family pressure, social injustice, immoral activities, and lack of ethics that often leads to patronizing the criminal behaviour.

Many stories are built around the scaffold of banking sector, ambience, people, and customers. And these are the stories that run robust with the skeins of crime thriller. Backing on his brilliant narration skills, Amresh Srivastava decorates each story with a lethal combination of mystery, thrill, and the social background of the characters. In all stories, the characters are well-sketched, and sub plots are intricately designed. The pace is fast because storytelling is engaging, which makes this book a terrific page turner.

After reading the book, if you lend a thought to experience – it comes out that overall the collection is powerful, intriguing, and also provides food for thought. Readers will be deeply affected by this book due to Amresh’s personal experiences in the banking ecosystem and strong moral guide well accentuated by a Shlok from Gita at the end of every story.

Buy the book from Amazon/Kindle


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