What the Book Holds
The Captain aka Vagh Pratap Singh, is a ghost. He could vanish just like that and you could never trace him. He’s a master of disguise and masters in whatever he does. One day he decides to retire but then he decides to take up Udham Kumar’s work as his final project. A project worth of many millions. A project that could settle his life throughout, lead him to lifetime imprisonment and could even end his life. Will the Captain acquire the famous stolen painting ‘The Poppy Flowers’ by Vincent Van Gogh? He has only few possible lists of names as a lead. Well, he has to steal again from that person. How is he going to do that? Does Captain have any plan? How many more are chasing the same painting? Read the book to find out who and why.
My Take On The Story
This story became fast paced towards the end. What started as a slow and dedicated search for a painting turned out to be full of action and chases. The chase definitely seemed to be of ‘Mission Impossible’ kind. The chase flip flopped at many instances, even backed off but that’s what a chase is supposed to be – full of unexpected twist at every turn. Why am I concentrating on chase sequence here in my review because it’s the one that makes the story quite interesting in the second half. You will find a map of the routes at the start of the book and it is as important as the story where maximum action happened. The Captain seemed to be the captain of this heist flick. No other character was involved as much as the Captain.
The plot revolves around the brilliance of the Captain and his plan to get hold of the painting. You might get shocked that the author didn’t maintain any big twist or secret to break the ice. He even revealed how the story would proceed at the beginning itself. But there is one big surprise, and that one holds another surprise to itself.
Ups and Downs
I felt that the other characters didn’t have much to exhibit themselves to get a place in the readers’ mind. They were set upon to take the story forward, like the police officer or Damodar. They were able to get convinced by the Captain very quickly or easily. They did not seem as tough as they should have been. The only character who matched the Captain is Sylvia and it’s because of the obvious reasons (you have to read the book to know who Sylvia is).
At the beginning, I thought that the story would be a crime thriller but on a second note, the story got better after the heist. Like Hansel and Gretel, both the protagonist and the antagonist pick up their own breadcrumbs to reach their destination. The way the police officer tracked the trails of the Captain was good and sensible. At many points, I felt the facts were logical and non-dramatic which helped to enjoy the book in a practical sense. There were no nail biting or edge-of-the-seat scenes but more of a decent rush and chase. The language was simple and consistent throughout, even at the important points.
Overall, The Heist Artist is a simple yet articulate heist story which grabs the reader along the track where we submissively attach to the chaos to enjoy the adrenaline rush induced by the author.
Author(s): Vish Dhamija
Publisher: Harper Collins India
Release: February 2019
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