Publisher: Randomhouse Publications
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“How About A Sin Tonight?” Trust Novoneel Chakroborthy to come up with an interesting title for his third novel. Sounds like a dialogue doesn’t it? Like the Bollywood Film Industry it centres around, this book too has its fair share of “filmi” dialogues and stories. The story revolves around 5 characters held together by the common thread of Bollywood. Shahrann Ali Bakshi is one of the many who throng to Bombay carrying within them, the hope of making it big. He wants to be a movie star but settles for working as a taxi driver. His closest encounter with the movies is working as a clapper on the movie set. However all this changes when he meets Mehfil. Mehfil is a kind-hearted prostitute who Shahraan falls in love with at first sight. However, she knows how society will react towards their relationship and decides to help him reach his dream through her contacts in the industry. Soon, Shahraan becomes an actor. During one of his shoots, he injures the Superstar of that era. The director then replaces him with Shahraan and Shahraan is catapulted to superstardom. The Superstar, on the other hand, lives in obscurity. His short-lived fame embitters him and he neglects his family. His daughter Nishani grows up craving his fatherly affection and vowing to dedicate her life to avenging her father. The story also revolves around the lives of two newcomers Neev and Reva as well as Kash, Nishani’s schoolmate. Novoneel Chakroborthy’s dark humour and the interesting story line of this book make it an interesting read. While the language may be a bit crude for some, I feel that the crudity was essential to portray the Industry with integrity. Even though there are many movies and books out the market portraying the dark, seedy underbelly of Bollywood, “How about a Sin Tonight?” provides readers with a fresh perspective of one of India’s highest grossing Industries.