Meet Johnny W – Will, not Walker – named thus by his alcoholic father who died under mysterious circumstances. Johnny is the founder of Thy Will, a dead diction centre for the rich and the famous and the fiance of Mira Kermani, daughter of the richest man in town. His questionable methods aside, Johnny’s commitment to ridding his patients of alcohol and drug abuse is beyond doubt. How ironic then that Mira is found dead in her apartment from an overdose of morphine. But why is Officer Ray convinced that Johnny is the killer? Johnny’s assistant Sera, who secretly love him and his half-brother Zac are working hard to protect him from the officer. Or are they? Could Aunt Adele’s hunger for what was rightfully her sons inheritance have driven her to murder? Or is the murderer an unhappy patient? From the author of the disturbing and controversial Jacob Hills, an unputdownable story of crime and passion in the hill station town of Monele.
I had wanted to read Ismita Tandon since she’s one of the few women authors penning thrillers with love as the core theme. As the title suggests, this is a tale of love and death. Literally. It is intriguing whether love blooms on dead bodies or death comes riding in a love carriage. Meet the riders in this carriage Johnny, Mira, Sera, Zac, Adele and Officer Ray.
Set in a beautiful and obscure hill station called Monele near Ooty, ‘Thy Will’ is an alcohol rehabilitation center run by Johnny Will. He prescribes things to his patients that are not strictly legal in a rehab. The idea is pretty unique in its own way. Johnny and Zac, half brothers and cousins have a dark and grimy past that is trapped in the vestiges of Thy Will. Zac’s mother and Johnny’s aunt Adele is a pretty but wasted lady torn in the dilemma of raising a child out of the wedlock.
Ismita’s writing is crisp, gripping and beguiling. The chapters are aptly distributed and named after the characters. Loved the doodles made for each character displayed at the beginning of the chapters. It’s a lovely idea incorporated by the author to make her protagonists more interesting. The plot is well laid and chalked out in advance. Though the climax is predictable to some extent, it doesn’t deter the reading. The author has been successful in maintaining the suspense throughout. There is a darkness looming on the characters which is deliciously well portrayed. I liked Johnny despite his vices, kudos to the author for that.
Recommended for anyone who loves dark thrillers.
My Rating: 4.25/5
About the Author:
Ismita after graduating from Sophia College went on to pursue an MBA degree. She had a successful stint at the Forex Division of Thomas Cook, Mumbai. While working with Thomas Cook she decided to take up writing as her career and there was no looking back after that. Ismita blogs at A Lesser Known Poet.
Her debut novel – Love on the Rocks – belongs to the romantic thriller genre. The novel hit the stores in March 2011, it’s about love and marriage against the background of suspense and play of emotions. First published in 2013, Jacob Hills is the second novel by the writer. At the time of writing, she is working on a book of poems and photographs, titled – The Song of the Sufi Masroof.
Language: English, Genre: Fiction/Thriller
Author(s): Ismita Tandon
Publisher: Harper Collins, Year Published: 2014 January
Binding: Paperback, Edition: First, Pages: 200
ISBN-13: 9789350298350 , ISBN-10: 935029835X
Reviewed for: Harper Collins and Indiblogger