Prisoner of Yakutsk by Shreyas Bhave: ManipalBlog Book Review

Title: Prisoner of Yakutsk: The Subhash Chandra Bose Mystery Final Chapter
Language: English
Author: Shreyas Bhave
Genre: Fiction –   Historical
Publisher: Leadstart Publishing Platinum Press (23rd January 2019)
ISBN-10: 9352011422
ISBN-13: 978-9352011421
Binding: Paperback
MRP: Rs. 399 (Buy from Amazon for 229)
Pages: 292


The fact with fiction. Truth with make-believe memories. The combinations used in this book make for some interesting reading. When he was alive, Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose was an enigma. His death in an alleged plane crash on August 18, 1945, in Taiwan remains a mystery wrapped in an enigma. Shreyas Bhave has a winner on his hands but could have done with the author’s note being moved to the endnotes section of the book. The Prisoner of Yakutsk is an excellent book which could have been great. Nevertheless, this is page turning stuff.

Read our interview with the author of Prisoner of Yakutsk – Shreyas Bhave

Detailed Review:

The cover of the book instantly catches the attention of the reader, the stark red background with Netaji’s profile is rendered well, especially the board with the prisoner name and number.

The story begins in the cold environs of Siberia (Yakutsk is the coldest city on earth) where a man is apparently being hunted by Russian spies with heat sensors and other high tech gear, finally leading to his capture. It then rapidly moves across the globe, taking us through the stories of a multimillionaire of the present age and a group of individuals from the post-independence era.

The protagonist millionaire lives in the present timeline and is trying to find what happened to his maternal grandparents with the help of members of the Wikileaks team. There are a few places where the writer goes overboard in showing the love interest between the protagonist and the WikiLeaks team member. This I Think could have been wholly omitted as it does not add anything to the storyline.

The other part of the storyline is set a few years after the Independence of India and is the story of five individuals who are secretly tasked with the search for Netaji by Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Vallabhai Patel. This is where the author shines, bringing in intrigue, drama and some thrilling characters to life.

The book does make for an engrossing read, but as mentioned in summary above, I was put off by the Author’s note at the beginning of the book. If you are writing a fiction presented as fact book, mentioning that at the beginning of the book is not ideal.

My opinion:

Prisoner of Yakutsk is a fast-paced and thrilling narrative of what happened to Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose and deserves a one time read. This will be loved by conspiracy theorists and historians equally.

What I liked about the Prisoner of Yakutsk by Shreyas Bhave

  1. Fast-paced narrative.
  2. Simple language.
  3. A decades-old conspiracy that has been handled with immense care and thorough research.

What I did not like about the Prisoner of Yakutsk by Shreyas Bhave

  1. The love interest between the protagonist and his associate could have been done away with entirely, there is no depth in this aspect.
  2.  Author’s note at the beginning should be moved to the end.

Buy or Don’t buy?  Buy it. If nothing more, you will learn a bit about our history.

I give the book a 4.0 out of 5. You can buy it from Amazon India or If you reside outside India try Amazon global.

Book Blurb:

What exactly happened to Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose?

  • In 1945, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, Leader of the INA leaves Singapore to take a series of flights, and dies in Taiwan after his plane crashes near Formosa. Or so it seems.
  • In 1947, Mr Mrs Singh, an illustrious army couple, both veterans of the Indian National Army, are last seen in Delhi, and then never again.
  • In 1949, the plane carrying the first deputy Prime Minister of India, Sardar Vallabhai Patel, mysteriously disappears for seven hours.
  • In 2012, following the fall of WikiLeaks, a female hacker of the notorious X group is on the run as most wanted by everyone from Interpol to the KGB
  • In 2015, the millionaire CEO of a Fortune 500 company suddenly resigns and vanishes from the public eye.

A set of seemingly unconnected disappearances emerge to be woven into a single fabric as the answer to one leads to another… In this riveting narrative, bestselling author Shreyas Bhave takes the reader on a thrilling adventure to solve the greatest mystery the Indian nation has known.


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