Book Review : Raakshas – India’s No.1 Serial Killer

Raakshas: India’s No.1 Serial Killer is a book by Piyush Jha, which falls in the genre of a crime thriller.

To be honest, although I love thrillers, I am not a crime fiction fan. As, gory details often put me off.

Yet this Raakshas had me hooked to its story line and how!

Read my book review of Raakshas to know more…

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I was sent a review copy of Raakshas, by Westside — in exchange for my unbiased and honest review. I haven’t be compensated monetarily for this review

Raakshas: A crime thriller by Piyush Jha

Firstly, let me start this book review of Raakshas with an appreciation for its cover, as it requires a special mention.

A glimpse of Raakshas’ Book Cover

The book cover of Raakshas has been intelligently designed, and is befitting of both — the story, as well as the storyline to the tee.

While the man on the cover looks quite intimidating with a knife, he does appear calm and introspective. Yet, the blood puckered stare of the person surely looks deceptive : one of a serial killer who is hungry for revenge and bloodshed.

This, in turn, speaks volumes of his actual psyche isn’t it?

Browse through the blurb of Raakshas

As the blurb of the book conveys, this story about India’s No.1 Serial Killer, as narrated by Maithili — a police officer, who is fighting with her own questionable past, apart from being the investigative officer on the case of the serial killer.

Storyline of Raakshas : Expounding the Anima

The story of Raakshas, opens with a couple’s scene —a scientist and his educated wife, being blessed with a baby boy, while the wife dies giving birth to the child.

Soon, the family members barring his aunt [who has a soft corner for the boy], blame the baby for the untimely demise of his mother.

The aunt takes the child under her tutelage and raises him with love and affection.

However, circumstances force the same boy to metamorphasis, much later into a serial killer.

What forces the child of such educated parents to transform into a monster— forms the crux of the story.

Running parallel to the boy’s story is personal story of Maithili, whose ‘killer’ past haunts her present existence, and affects her working as an efficient police officer.

To know more about the transformation of an innocent child into a Raakshas, and delve into Maithili’s past, you ought to read the book!

A peek into the narrative style of Raakshas

Piyush Jha as a writer has been successful in keeping the reader intrigued with the story line of Raakshas.

A compelling narrative of spine-chilling killings, that prods over a person’s psyche with a disturbed childhood, interweaved with two parallel stories, makes Raakshas an engrossing read.

Yes, some of the descriptions of the gory acts are grisly and awful, but they are of prime importance to move the story forward.

Also, as a reader, one is forced to be taken on an emotional roller coaster, riding on the feelings of sympathy as well as hatred for the serial killer or Raakshas.

The readers are sure to sympathize with him for his past and hate him for his present.

If not for these descriptive paras, the acts of the serial killer would have been justified and commiserated.

The language style used in Raakshas

The writer in Piyush Jha has reflected on a lot issues plaguing India : issues of law and order situation, red tape, the inefficiency of the police force, lack of support and encouragement for efficient uniformed men and women due to political pressure; media trials that happen for the sake of TRPs, the boom of ‘fake babas and sadhus’, and the ever-increasing number of people duped by them.

All this is sure to resonate with the readers and make them introspect, as these aspects have been conveyed in a simple and intelligible Indian English by Piyush Jha.

At the end of the book, there are some real-life accounts of various serial killers of India, which again is definitely petrifying.

Raakshas – A review

The only grey area of the story would be the random rattling away off street and place names of Mumbai and Pune, during the course of the story.

The writer could have devoted some more paragraphs in giving vivid descriptions of these streets to make it more authentic and convincing.

Yet, underlying all these flaws, the fact that no one is ‘born a serial killer’ by birth, and that circumstances force a person to become one, keeps reckoning in the reader’s mind until the end.

Also, a very strong message of ‘how parental guidance and upbringing can influence a child to transform either into a marvel or a monster, forms the undercurrent of this book called Raakshas.

These aspects give the story a humane touch though being a crime thriller and this is where the writer in Piyush Jha excels.

Parting words on Raakshas

The story of ‘Raakshas’ has got all the ingredients to be transformed onto the silver screen, as I eagerly await its release.

As for the book Raakshas, it makes a compelling read by keeping the reader on tenterhooks until the end.

So, go for it, as I give Raakshas a rating of 3.5 / 5 !

You might want to instantly purchase a copy through Amazon by clicking on the below image.


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2 thoughts on “Book Review : Raakshas – India’s No.1 Serial Killer”

  1. Rajiv Venkatasubramanian

    Super review! Thoroughly enjoyed reading it. One question: what do you mean by “Indian English” 🙂
    Looking forward to more reviews and blog posts!

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