Neil Must Die

Title: Neil Must Die
Author: Kaberi Chatterjee
Publisher: Blackbuck Publication
Genre: Fiction

Neil Must Die by Kaberi Chatterjee is story of a man’s journey back to home; with the core of an extramarital affair and a pinch of thriller. Neil, a Bengali guy, living with joint family in Calcutta falls in love with his brother’s wife. The angst of such love and self-guilt forces him to run away but there are deeper dark valleys in the world outside for him to succumb. News of a coming life changes things and he decides to return home and face his future or whatever left of it because Neil must die. Why? Okay, let’s be spoiler free. 

What is with extramarital affair? Why so many writers are interested in it? That was my first reaction after reading the blurb. And yes, I have the answer after reading the book but it has nothing to do with the concept of taboo love. It takes real talent on writer’s part to create average characters, put them in grey slots and still make the reader feel pity for them. The characters of Neil and Tuli are beautifully woven and keep you engrossed in the tale. Generally, a hardcore Drama fiction drags a bit but the subplots included by author makes it a fast paced novel. But what really make you to turn the pages is the impeccable narration and interesting story-flow. 

Counting the cons; even where the author is a woman, I felt the female characters in this novel unreal and their actions unjustified. I understand, what fiction is if not leap of faith, but still at some points I felt detached from the story due to this and… There is a list of Glossary attached at the end of the book giving definitions of Bengali words and phrases spattered across the novel. Most authors like to say, they include slangs to give shade to characters (or regional background in this case), I am not satisfied with this answer. For instance, when your read Hagrid’s dialogues written by JKR, it is not bad language and you get a good enough idea about how the big guy is. Also, if you come across a phrase ‘niceta meetcha’ you won’t only know what he meant (nice to meet you) but will also get a hint on his ethnicity. I firmly believe it is high time for Indian writers to incorporate such dialogue techniques instead. 

There are a few scenes which could be categorized as obscene, but I didn’t find anything offending. Hence, overall it is a decent read for everyone but specially recommended to fans of Drama genre. 

Rating: 3.5/5 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher for reviewing purpose. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


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