The Alphabet Killer

This is a review I’ve been meaning to write for a loo…ng time. I read Prachi Sharma’s The Alphabet Killer at least two months ago, but haven’t had a chance to sit and write a prachireview. First off, let me just say: writing crime thrillers is tough, and writing a good crime thriller even more so.

The book is the story of Mia Santos, a successful author and editor of an international feminist magazine. Someone is raping and killing the women she works with, one by one, and Mia’s getting taunted and tormented by someone who claims to be the killer, a killer from her own dark past. The book follows Mia’s life and what happens when she confronts the killer who’s adamant on exposing her past and ruining her life.

What I liked:

  • The story is believable. The characters aren’t too “embellished” as they often tend to be in fiction.
  • The plot is racy and manages to retain interest at almost every step.
  • The author invests enough time and effort in fleshing out her main characters and telling the reader why they are the way they are. A mark of a well fleshed-out character is that you feel as though you “know” the person, and Mia’s character definitely comes across that way.
  • The back story. I especially liked this bit, the history of Mia. For any character’s story to have a good foundation, his or her back story needs to have substance. I will not say any more than that!

What I didn’t like:

  • The editing could’ve been tighter.
  • Some things in the novel (to me) appear irrelevant, such as the fact that Mia is writing another novel. This would make sense only to those who’ve read the book and unfortunately I can’t explain more without giving away valuable matter.
  • The dialogue between Mia and Damien (a police officer she’s working with to solve the case) feels a little stilted at times.

In a nutshell, The Alphabet Killer is worth a read. I’d recommend it for the storytelling skill more than anything else.

Title: The Alphabet Killer
Author: Prachi Sharma
Publisher: Half Baked Beans
Price: Rs. 199
Get it here.

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