Sunday, November 25, 2012

3-in-1 Book Reviews-The Bankster, Jack Patel & 1 more

In this post I am reviewing 3 books- Bankster and If god was a  Banker, both by Ravi Subramanian plus "Jack Patel's Dubai dreams" by PG Bhasker. I couldn't review these books in detail, hence the summary.

The Bankster by Ravi Subramanian
Ravi Subramanian’s latest flick “Bankster” is another good read. This time I’d read reviews of few other bloggers before I got my copy from flipkart, hence my suspension and curiosity was little less. 

Nevertheless, the 358 page book is easy to read and there’s no junk text to bore audience.

This fiction focuses heavily on money laundering- how tax heavens and fictitious accounts are used to facilitate fund transfers which are not legitimate transactions. Story runs in 3 parallel tracks which eventually link to each other and merge.

Author uses all real life incidents effortlessly in his fiction. Koodankulam nuclear power plant protests, a German national (Sonnteg Reiner Hermann) getting extradited in this connection, Fukushima incident, Chernobyl incident are all used effortlessly by the author in Bankster. Because of this story feels very realistic. There’s no filmy heroism and logic less plots- all these add to credibility of the story.
Current development on nuclear plant is the news on waste disposal- Govt planning to stuff nuclear waste into gold mines of Kolar. Had the novel been delayed by 6 months, probably this also would have been part of the plot. 

Few characters from Ravi’s other novels are re-used (Karan for example)
Bankster will also make a nice movie if converted…

I finished reading this in one sitting overnight. Makes a good read, do give it a try.

Published by Rupa, MRP Rs 250, was available for Rs 179 on flipkart.


"If God was a banker" - Ravi Subramanian
Similar to his other books, “If God was a banker” also revolves around Banking Industry. While “The Incredible Banker” talked about credit card fraud and “Devil in Pinstripe” was about loan & credit related frauds, “If God was a banker” is more about career progression.

The other two books had little or no adult text, this book has an overdose of the same. So I’d recommend his other two books instead of this one.

If God was a banker is the story of two new joinees, who begin their carrier with a large MNC bank. Under the leadership of same mentor. One Sundeep is aggressive and strives to make it big without any regard for the means, while the other, Swami has high ethical standards. Their path criss-crosses several times as they climb up the banking ladder at high speed.

I liked the ideation around how automobile loans were made easier by the idea of these new folks. Few other incidents are also helpful how fraud happens in banking system and how they are investigated
Storyline, narration and plot is somewhat similar to other books, so I won’t go into details. If you’ve read the other two books (Incredible Banker & Devil in Pinstripes), this one can be avoided.

Jack Patel's Dubai dreams- PG Bhaskar

PG Bhaskar is the new author I tried. Came across this book online while buying Ravi Subramanian's books. This book is also about Banking industry, but not a suspense/thriller like Ravi's.

"Jack Patel's Dubai dreams" is about Jai Kishan, a Gujarathi born, Chennai raised guy's ambitions to make it big in investments. He gets lucky to land a job in Dubai office of a NY based investment Banking firm. All goes well for couple of years while Jack builds his career, makes money for his clients and makes money for himself too. All hell breaks loose once recession & sub prime crisis explodes, turning millionaires into paupers.

This book also uses real world names- Citi, Lehman Brothers, Bank of America and other names which were at the epicenter of financial crisis in late 2008. Satyam scandal also broke out during the same timeline- I was hoping there'll be some reference to it. But there was none.

Because I read this book along with Ravi's, I can't help but compare the two.

While Ravi's books ran in couple of parallel tracks, Jack Patel's story runs in single track. While Ravi would cut unnecessary details where possible (Example, if there was a wedding event in the story, Ravi would cover it as briefly as possible, a line or a paragraph), but Jack's story tries to elaborate stuff which reader may not care much. If I am reading the book with financial interest, detailed text on family matters, wedding and so on would take my interest away.(I could be wrong in this- female readers might like this family/wedding angle)

I appreciate PG Bhaskar for writing the book without using a single word of adult text (which Ravi would have glorified further if there's a chance) and indicating such matters in utmost sensitivity.

The 230 page Penguin published, book, priced at  Rs 150 makes a good read to know inside world of private banking and wealth management. But be prepared to read some extra narration here and there.

Author has another book- "Jack is back in Corporate Carnival", which sequels "Jack Patel's Dubai dreams". Should read it next. 

Other book reviews: Fate, Fraud and Friday Wedding *  Topgear magazine * Comical Saga Fate, Fraud and Friday Wedding * She's a jolly good fellow *


roopa lokesh said...

Seems interesting. will try reading this.

Debopam said...

I have already gone through Bankster, will try to read the others.....

sabyasachi patra | Wild India said...

Nice review. I had heard a lot about The Bankster. Will try to take out time to read it, as you have recommended it :).

Shrinidhi Hande said...

thanks for your comments

Shrinidhi Hande said...

thanks for your comments

Harivansh Rai said...

Ravi Subramanian has got an expertise to connect to his readers, create a magnetic theme and get his readers absorbed deep into each page of his thriller. The Bankster is as absorbing as his earlier four thrillers. He drives his story quite exhaustively and beautifully with full command on the subject and clarity in concept. That probably has come due to Author's extensive experience in banking sector for years. It seems for all those years of his career in banking, he drank and ate all the core processes of banking so well and hence has been able to bring out such a fantastic piece of work.

This is his first work that I have read and decided to review, such was the charismatic story of BANKSTER. Karan Panjabi, who enters into the story of The Bankster quite late but has been characterized in a very strong manner, probably is the replica of Ravi Subramanian himself in real life, so sharp and quick in resolving a series of murders mystery. Not all murders happen in same manner, neither happened in the same place of country. But there was a deep connect in all serial killings that happened in various countries and that is where the expertise of Karan Panjabi comes into picture who gets hardly 48 hours to resolve this case. Author takes you to various cities around the globe - Angola, Vienna, Mumbai and Devikulam to get you acquainted with various characters of the story and get you engaged in the plot well woven.

Basically, the story is about a multinational bank that is doing quite well in terms of business in its various branches all across India after entering the country. Greater Boston Global Bank or GB2 is operative in all major cities of India and has its country headquarter in one of its branches in Mumbai. GB2 in quite professional in its approach and focuses on hiring best of the breed available in market. It boasts of best practices in HR, Operations, Marketing, Financing and Sales. Somehow among all good things there is a chain of wrong people who are spoiling the show by having connections with high level of international mafia/ gang and thus do not hesitate in getting down to any level of wrongdoing. These wrongdoing culprits are not only weakening the roots of GB2 bank but also getting involved into some extreme crimes.

This interesting story hints on quite a few guys as culprits in the network but who turn out to be innocent and otherwise. Overall it is quite neatly woven and engrossing read that will keep you hooked throughout.