Here comes Private India, the latest addition to the Patterson’s Private series where he goes on to collaborate with the author and takes forward the novel which is set in his co-author’s own country, India. To the journey this far, ex-CIA agent Mr. Jack Morgan sets up his detective agency in Los Angeles, Berlin, London, and several other cities in AMerica and Europe.
In the current “Private” series, i.e Private India, for the Indian edition, Patterson’s chief partner in crime is Ashwin Sanghi who has authored “The Krishna Key”, “Chanakya’s Chant”, “The Rozabal Line”, out of many others. For the Patterson’s “Private India” work, he looked upon Ashwin Sanghi as the best writing partner for his paced up knowledge and plot and the content that he puts up in his books.
The ex-cop and the head of the Private India agency, Santosh Wagh, is called up when a woman is found murdered in the hotel whose security is handled by Private India. The women who is murdered is plastic surgeon from Thai and has been in India as a tourist. As the story leads ahead, with the murders piling up one after the other, it becomes transparent that there is a serial killer associated with the murders and has some agenda of murders.
Mr. Wagh and other cops from the Private India agency get down to crack and solve the case. In the cracking of the case, there come gangsters, godmen, corrupt officials, and several other cliche possible that could come up in the process of the crime and happenings taking place around in Mumbai.
The book has been written keeping in mind the International readers, and has tried to convince the sense of the city. As the story proceeds, Patterson and Sanghi’s story throws up red herring that are quite easy to spot if one has seen few seasons of CSI or been through some thrillers. There are still some neat-bits in the book. The threads in the novel are snapped too abruptly and quickly.
The place at which the book lacks is that after an intriguing beginning, the events that follow up in the book find it difficult to maintain the level of mystery. The readers definitely didn’t wish the unraveling of the mystery in the manner it happens in Private India, getting quick and ordinary in the process.
Private India comprises of Hindu mythology and mysticism, that is part of the novels and writings of Ashwin Sanghi. Also, the books contains half-baked exploration of gender and identity, which comes of as a fact when a woman in the story becomes a man, despite Sanghi’s fascination of ‘shakti’.
The story involves too many characters, and involves the stereotypes about India, which is usually a turn off for an audience at large.
For the readers: You may not probably like the quality of prose in Private India, though the combination of fast paced thriller Patterson’s ideas, and Sanghi’s touch of the India. It is much of an unusual amalgam and at first sight you almost dismiss it as being plain gimmicky.
Details of the book:
Title: Private India
Authors: James Patterson and Ashwin Sanghi
Publisher: Arrow Books