January 1944 Holed up in a Himalayan hideout, freedom fighter Manohar Rai has to take a chilling decision – one that could mean life or death for millions of people. His only hope is a mysterious young man, who goes into hiding hours before Manohar is shot dead in cold blood. June 2018 A forgotten legend from the upper reaches of the Himalayas is rearing its ominous head. The world will be brought to its knees. KaalKoot will strike again. Only three people have a clue about the horrors that are about the unfold. The only hope for survival lies buried deep in the remotest corner of Himalayas. But a terrible fate awaits those who seek it. Is it already too late Is KaalKoot – the primordial plague – unstoppable.
This is one book that made me regret my decision. No I did not mean it in a way that I regretted choosing the book. The book’s initial part did not make me glue to it. I read the book taking frequent breaks, but once the plot began racy, the breaks were gone far off and you wouldn’t believe starting I completed the book from part II till the end in one stretch. Such gripping and intriguing was the narration. It made me think what was next or who is next?
The story starts with an introduction to Manohar Rai who keeps a certain information a secret from the government. The story dates back to in the 1940s. But when he suspects that the secret would be sneaked out, he decides to confide it within a youngster. And then there was no information about what was confided and who the youngster was.
Professor Bani and few others are into research about this, gather so much information and a lot of background studies, come to know that the secret that was confided or a weapon that could have possibly been used in the past is to be put in use in the current future. HE along with Professor Hudson, Bavedkar and Steve are aware of it. There is an opponent group headed by Maestro or Doc as he is called; who rediscovered the weapon and is planning an attack with it, to make these professors come out with the secret.
The story starts with a series of disappearances, murders. Sameer is on the verge of losing his relationship with Ananya. This is when she is kidnapped, because she helped out Professor Bavedkar. Sameer tracks the clues left behind and has unknowingly put himself into the quest of solving the mystery of the weapon or “Kaalkoot’ as it’s been known widely.
Damini an agent with ACG, an investigative agency heads this operation guided by her chief. She along with Sameer set out on a journey of mysterious findings from a flashback being told by Professor Bani. Professor Bani, saddened by the sudden disappearance of Bavedkar and demise of Steve, is forced to talk about the ancient history of Kaalkoot.
Together when they plan to set out to rediscover the secrets that the youngster left, Damini is demoted and is cleared from handling the case. But she offers all help to Sameer to accomplish the task.
The British on knowing that the Japanese coming into power might also take over India, plan to destroy the evergreen lands to rubble. And to do this, they used a weapon. People are killed, leaving no evidence of existence. In order to save the richest of literature and artifacts of our nation, the youngster travelled the length and breadth of country and gathered them and secretly hid them in a place that nobody knows. The place also holds another secret, which I am not about to give out and will leave it for you to find out when you read the book.
After much struggles, does Sameer find out the secret hideout, does he discover the treasures of the nation? Does he reunite with Ananya? What happens to Damini and the opponent maestro is the rest of the story.
Though the book starts in slow pace, it gains momentum at the right place. The editing was perfect. I really appreciate the narration style of the author, not giving up the entire secret at one go and making your eagerness drop. Chapter by chapter, the need to find out increases which makes it an interesting need.
The book is divided into parts and in turn into chapters. The chapters also include simultaneous narrations from various scenes, which gives you a complete picture on what is happening is a reaction to the action in one scene.
A well thought out plot, executed perfectly.
I got the book as part of the review program in outset .
- Reading level:12+ years
- Paperback:343 pages
- Publisher:TreeShade Books (7 December 2018)
Writing and Presentation: 4/5
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Venkatesh wears many hats. In his roles as private equity investor, executive coach, business leader, entrepreneur and Board member, he has helped businesses thrive and grow. He has spent a significant part of his professional life in the stock markets with Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank and JP Morgan and continues to be an avid investor. Venkatesh has been keenly interested in Eastern philosophy and mysticism right from his college days at IIT Delhi and IIM Calcutta. He has found his inspiration to write in rather curious settings – while crawling through war tunnels in Vietnam, coming face-to-face with a bear in the Nilgiris, chancing upon an Indus Valley ruin while on a road trip, listening to “Madhushala,” or just drinking cutting chai by the roadside. He is passionate about self-discovery and the power of stories to inspire and transform.