Writing a review of The Blue Bar book is not an easy one to write for me. Alert: this is a long review after a long time. 🙂
It has taken me time and making peace with the fact that there is always collateral damage in life to write this review.
As a die-hard romantic, The Blue Bar is a book I savored with characters I despised and the sweet, wholesome love I enjoyed.
After reading this book, I’ve had mixed emotions and the fact that this book was on my mind for a long time and it took me quite a few weeks before I could settle you down to write the review finally.
Why you ask?
The problem was all mine. If Damyanti had any role to play, it was that she wrote a remarkable book.
A book that told the story of disembowelled women, cut with surgical precision and ruthless, macabre accuracy. The Blue Bar is unputdownable; I wanted to read and find the killer.
I wanted to read it fast so I could find the killer and put an end to his killing spree so that I could stop him.
But I also wanted to read the book slowly so I could enjoy the nuances, the details, and the scenes as I was immersed in the book and Mumbai.
This post contains amazon affiliate links that support the blog at no extra cost to you.
Damyanti’s writing has always been hard-hitting; she goes deep into the bone and lays it all bare forcing the reader to think, to analyze their values, their life, the environment, and the choices that they make.
This book, The Blue Bar is no different.
After reading her first book, You Beneath Your Skin I was eager to read the second book though they are not connected.
The books follow a similar vein of uncovering and saving the lives of underprivileged women.
Damyanti ensures that with The Blue Bar the readers are immediately immersed in the world of Tara and Arnav, the police inspector who is her lover. Though they have been apart for many years, the chemistry that they share was endearing.
Love doesn’t see the passage of time.
Add to that the mystery of what she had been doing and where she was and how the stage was set for the crimes to occur, makes this book a page turner.
The crimes and the gory details that the author shares of the crime scene. How the dead bodies pile up and in what conditions they were found; was brutal to read at times.
It was unnerving but at the same time I was so invested in the book wanting to read, wanting to find out would the girls get justice or would they be able to find any details of bodies that have been dumped over the years that I read incessantly, unceasingly and did not stop till I had finished the book.
Such is the power of Damayanti’s writing and the worlds that she creates in her books that it just does not let you keep the books down. I raced through the book while at the same time I tried to slow down and read at a pace so that the book doesn’t finish too fast.
However the evil man made me read fast, it is due to him as I wanted to know who is he, what happens to him and the women at The Blue Bar.
Will Tara be safe? Will they find the killer on time, will the collateral be safe? Will her friend survive? Oh…I hope she does! Who is the killer? I must know! Dammit, it’s not him! This guy, this wuss! This jerk! Are they all in it? She’s the one? No! WTF? That’s impossible! Can’t Arnav see this? Oh, I hope she is safe… and he is evil? Is she or is it her? This guy is trouble or is he? Can she be the one? The dance bar or the hotel or is it the railway station? Is it him or is it this guy… he checks all the boxes?
These were just my mind’s rambling as I read and raced against time along with Inspector Arnav. It was unnerving and a wild ride. I was transported to the lagoons of Mumbai. The underbelly and the glittering divas to be thoroughly entertained.
Damyanti has together with characters and situations that are so realistic that I felt as if it had happened in real life and I would have heard it on the news sometime and now a book has been written.
This is the strength and the plus point of her writing that she takes stories, she takes inspiration from incidents in real life and spins them into this beautiful heart wrenching but a little scary thrilling book for us to read.
By immersing us into a world that is both evil and kind at the same time to help us realize it is the kindness of strangers that helps the world.
It is also the evil within all of us, the evil around us and at times the level of wretchedness that drives even the simplest of individuals to commit the most heinous crimes.
Time and again, we believe no one is born a criminal, no one is inherently evil, and it is our situation and our environment, our childhood that drives a person to become what they are as they grow up.
The Blue Bar proves once again that the environment matters and how incidents of our past can trigger and turn a person into a monster.
Arnav and Tara’s relationship is the backbone of the story, adding depth and layers to the storyline. The motivation and angst of the characters are clear when we understand their past.
Peeling back the layers of the story to see the past of the characters to what they have become today. The Blue Bar is unravelling murders from the past that threaten lives in the present.
Love keeps pushing Tara and Arnav while hate and abuse propel and motivate the killer.
The killer is right there, but I just couldn’t pin him. I guessed wrong—twice.
Damyanti writes with tricks and hides the killer in plain sight, as is obvious in the book.
The book ended with the romantic me feeling disgruntled but not hopeless. It is a stand-alone read but crime always has loose ends to tie up. Hope and love survive but so does evil. It is as if they are thriving off each other.
The book has a sequel in the works and I’m hoping for severe, if not swift justice. But that’s just me.
Damyanti I’m sure has many elaborate, sly and morbid plans for the book which I know I will read as soon as I can lay my hands on it.
The Blue Bar book was unputdownable and Damyanti is the culprit 😀 Go read THE BLUE BAR now.
I received an ARC from NetGalley.
BLURB: THE BLUE BAR
On the dark streets of Mumbai, the paths of a missing dancer, a serial killer, and an inspector with a haunted past converge in an evocative thriller about lost love and murderous obsession.
After years of dancing in Mumbai’s bars, Tara Mondal was desperate for a new start. So when a client offered her a life-changing payout to indulge a harmless, if odd, fantasy, she accepted. The setup was simple: wear a blue-sequined saree, enter a crowded railway station, and escape from view in less than three minutes. It was the last time anyone saw Tara.
Thirteen years later, Tara’s lover, Inspector Arnav Singh Rajput, is still grappling with her disappearance as he faces a horrifying new crisis: on the city’s outskirts, women’s dismembered bodies are being unearthed from shallow graves. Very little links the murders, except a scattering of blue sequins and a decade’s worth of missing person reports that correspond with major festivals.
Past and present blur as Arnav realizes he’s on the trail of a serial killer and that someone wants his investigation buried at any cost. Could the key to finding Tara and solving these murders be hidden in one of his cold cases? Or will the next body they recover be hers?…………………………………………………………………..
This post contains Amazon affiliate links.
In case you click on any of the links and make a purchase, I get a commission at no extra cost to you to help offset the cost to keep this website going.
As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.