Murder in Amaravati by Sharath Komarraju is a well-crafted murder mystery. While the murder is not chilling, the book has all the ingredients that a good murder mystery should have. The story-line is gripping. There is enough suspense to hold the attention of the readers. The setting is not thrilling but certainly captivating. The sleuth is vibrating enough to make a place in the hearts of the readers. The book has the BIG REVEAL SCENE at the end of the book where the killer is unmasked and the motive for the murder is explained. The narration is good and the language is pleasant. In short, the book is a decent murder mystery which keeps the readers engrossed and occupied till the end. In fact, we can term this murder mystery as a traditional one where questions are asked to almost every character present in the book.
Let us turn our attention to the story-line. The story is set in some rural part of Andhra. The place is a peaceful village known by the name of Amaravati. Padmavati, the village hostess of this village, is discovered dead inside the Sanctum Sanctorum of the village Kali temple one morning. This village hostess apparently has got links to a large number of men from the village. What’s more, a number of these men appear to have a motive to see her dead. Head constable Venkat Reddy comes to the scene of crime to do the formalities by filing a FIR and let the case rot its way to a passive death in the heap of files. However, something (especially the eyes of the victim) forces this constable to look into the case more closely. And, his investigation of the case forms the rest of the story.
The author has depicted each and every character of this book with proper care. The author has deliberately added different gestures to different characters. This has helped him in bringing these characters to life through particular elements of characterization such as their appearances, their behaviour, and manner of speech, etc. This sort of characterization not only helps readers in connecting with these characters easily, but also makes these characters relatable. With the help of these characters, the author transports readers to the village of Amravati and they also start investigating the case along with the head constable Venkat Reddy. The author leaves enough clues for the readers to solve the case by themselves.
Surprisingly, the pace of the story-line is slow. You generally do not expect this sort of slowness in case of murder mysteries. However, this slowness does not affect the book at any level. There is enough suspense to hold the readers’ attention. The climax of the book has been written brilliantly. As a matter of fact, it is the climax which makes this book ‘a wonderful read’. One minor blemish which I would like to point out is the titles of different chapters. Some of these titles give away a part of the story-line if you look at them carefully. Therefore, some more attention could have been paid on this aspect of the novel.
Note: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange of an honest review.