TITLE: The Monk
AUTHOR: Akshay Shroff
PUBLISHER: Gargi Publishers
GENRE: Thriller



The Monk


Ten-year old Lakshya Gaitonde dreams of following a career in cricket like his idol, Sunil Gavaskar. But destiny has other plans for him.

He loses his father, Police sub-inspector Rajaram Gaitonde in the Mumbai terror attack of March 1993. He decides to follow his father’s footsteps and becomes a police officer.

In the July 2006 serial train blasts on the Mumbai suburban network, he loses his mother and fiancee. In consultation with the Commissioner of Police, he devises a diabolical plan to crush the menace of terrorism at its roots.

Does he succeed? How does he manage to avenge the killing of his parents and his beloved? Why does he finally don saffron robes?



Plot/ Story-line: An interesting one, the author taking inspiration from the terror attacks unleashed on Mumbai over a period of time weaves a story. During the course of the same he takes the reader on a journey of the terror attacks in chronological order and at the same time gives us an insight into its psychological impact on the protagonist Lakshya Gaitonde.

The story sees the metamorphosis of a cricket loving kid to a responsible police officer and is filled with the agony that one goes through on losing a beloved one to mindless terror attack. At the same time it emphasis the fact that the ultimate sufferers are not the big-wigs but the ordinary citizens whose only crime is that they are at the wrong place at the wrong time.

The book is a bag of emotions. While on the one hand you get to experience romance on the other hand you also see how that very romance can kill something inside. There is violence and there is empathy too. There is honesty and a sense of duty on the one hand and greed and on the other hand. In fact one comes across the myriad shades of life in 217 pages.

There are some interesting twists and turns and there is suspense in the air after the first half. But it is the climax that is truly worth looking out for.

Characterization: The characters are well-developed with all their imperfections. One can easily relate to them, their emotions, their actions and reactions.

Language: Simple and easily to understand. No hard nuts to crack in the form of jargon.


Though an interesting read, the book is heavily loaded with facts that are woven within the fabric of the story and these act as stumbling blocks. For those who are not aware of the terror attacks on Mumbai this will work as a wonderful reference book. However I personally feel that the author could have taken care of this problem by putting the details of the attacks that Mumbai has been a witness to till date, in a separate chapter at the end of the book or as a foreword. It would have helped the reader sail through the story smoothly.


An engaging read, you can take this one up on a lazy afternoon. I’ll give it a 3/5.



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A successful advertising sales consultant of domestic and international media, spanning over three decades Akshay Shroff has been associated with voluntary organizations like the Lions and the Junior Chamber International in senior positions and also with trade bodies like the Delhi Advertising Club and the Press Club of India.

A man with a passion for travel, trekking, reading and writing Akshay Shroff is a green panther and a cynophilist . The Monk is his debut novel.

Want to connect? It’s easy.

Twitter id : @akshaythemonk

Facebook : Author Akshay Shroff


It’s always a pleasure to know others views books and reviews. Do leave your views on the book and this review in the comment box below.


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