Sunday, October 26, 2014

Book Review:GOD IS A GAMER


Details:

Name: GOD IS A GAMER
Author: Ravi Subramanian
Genre: Thriller


Background: 

Just before picking up this book for reviewing, I read "Devil in Pinstripes". It dealt with mind games and relentless politics played in banks. I was intrigued by Ravi Subrmanian's lucid writing and wanted to read more of his books. Through a book review programme by blogadda, I was opportuned to get hold of this book.

Plot: 


  When you grab this book, the very first thing you notice is this catchy word, "Bitcoin".Bitcoins, a relatively new concept is promoted by the author. The prologue aptly explains how the concept of "Bitcoins" was invented.
     Gillian Tan is a top notch member of the US senate committee advising on South Asian affairs. Aditya Rao(after reading devil in pinstripes, I could understand who this Aditya could be!), a person who was in the higher echelons of NYIB(New York International Bank). Sundeep is a very close aide of Aditya. Swami is a person in the race to become the CEO after Malvika and a very good friend of Aditya. Tanya, Malvika's daughter is an attractive woman. A few FBI officers and CBI officer.
Now let us connect the dots. In India, in NYIB a phishing scam breaks out and Swami becomes the scapegoat when Malvika is the CEO. Swami has a personal dislike for Malvika since he is made the scapegoat and his promotions and the promise of charing the bank has met a dead end. The management in Singapore realises who the real culprit is and promotes her to an inactive but a catchy position of chairman who is just a pseudo lead.
  Tanya, is a very attractive girl who enters into a relationship with Varun. Varun is a person who is unaware about his relatonship with Aditya Rao , the owner of two startups eTIOS(handling transactional operations of NYIB) and Indiscape(gaming company). After Varun meets Aditya and fathoms his relationship with Aditya, he is made in charge of Indiscape. 
   Meanwhile, in US, Gillian Tan is murdered and an ATM heist breaks out. The ATM heist is well planned and follows a pattern. Some part of this money is then converted to bitcoins and then transferred. eTIOS(managing card transactions of NYIB, owned by Aditya Rao) is accused of allowing this withdrawal amounting to millions of dollars overseas. Why is Gillian Tan murdered?Does Gillian Tan hold some other identity which led to his murder?
  In India, during her birthday party, Malvika is said to commit suicide by apparently "jumping off" from her house which had a low parapet.  her daughter(Tanya) makes an appeal to find the real culprit and she pins the blame on the finance minister who hadnt kept up his "promise". Was he responsible for her murder?
  In India, Indiscape, a venture of Aditya Rao(operations managed by Varun) in online gaming is suddenly accused of mingling with bitcoins. Aditya Rao is a Samaritan citizen and totally oblivious to this bitcoin transaction going on through his venture is clawed by FBI  for this underground activity. 

Hold on, before moving further? What is going on? How are all these incidents connected?..is something one must read this book to find out.

My Verdict:

Well, the plot has a lot of twists and turns, the prologue of this book describes it the best. Here it goes:

            "God is a Gamer is a world where money means nothing, martyrs are villians, predators are prey,assasination is taught by the ancient Greeks, and nothing is as it seems."

It is very rightly said, "nothing is as it seems" and things are grandly deceptive. People who seem to be so innocent aren't innocent.The author has put in a lot of time in research. He has explained the concept of Bitcoins in depth using various technical terms. The author has however, made sincere efforts to explain the functionality of each of the terms used. While reading, at each juncture I tried to connect the dots between the incident happening in the US and India. It is like the story begins from the north pole extremes but ends converging at the south pole. The read never got boring though there were two parallel incidents being narrated, they both managed to keep me gripped till the end.

Best Part:
1)The lucid writing of the author which keeps one gripped to the book notwithstanding the tortuous plot.
2)The author keeps the plot exciting on all three fronts-the start, the mid and the end.


   However, I felt that the character of Sundeep(close confidante of Aditya) could have made more space in this book. He always acted as a support system to Aditya. If not anything else, he could have occupied a greater role in this book.
Secondly, author could have made the slightly simpler for readers to grasp. One has to keep in mind the preceeding events to understand the logic behind the events to-come. This may cause problems for readers who read this book for a long span of time with huge gaps. One might forget who's who or the events which lead to a particular conclusion.
    The chapter-wise format was a wise move by the author but at areas I felt that created discontinuity but thats how it goes!
The only flipside of this book is that the plot is very complicated but the author's simple and lucid narration nullifies this and makes it easier to understand than expected.

Final word:

Highly recommended for people who wish to read something actually exciting and thrilling. Will make up a very good weekend read.I completed this book in two sittings. Highly increased my confidence in Indian authors.
Keep up the good work Mr Ravi Subramanian, waiting for your next book.

My Rating: 4/5.

This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books!