Smita Beohar's Reviews > A Flawed God

A Flawed God by Arjun Shekhar
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Jul 13, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: review-copy, contemporary-indian-authors
Read in July, 2011

Sanchit, our protagonist is on a low in his career and is dead sure that this appraisal would see the end of him. It is then that he receives an invitation to join “Progress in Work Collectives, a mysterious organization aiming to save “work” from the four letter curse that it has become. In their own words “they are a guild of organizational behavior scientists who run an invisible initiative to put the organization’s staff at the centre of its strategy.”

His curiosity takes him to Turkey for the induction as the core member of the guild. The membership though comes after a process of selection. Post the training when he resumes work he sees a major shift there. Things are no more the way they were before he had left. There has been a major recoup; the old autocratic boss who had sidelined the MD of the company had been ceremoniously thrown out by the MD’s daughter & Pause. Pause a Keralite by birth & is Sanchit’s only sounding board in the company. A woman of exception intelligence has lot more on her plate than she shows off.

The new management introduces drastic measures to correct the wrongs in the factory which snowballs into a political matter all thanks to the local MLA. What happens next and how the deadlock is solved forms the crux of the story.

My Verdict

If I have to describe this book in few words then it would be “Corporate Thriller.”

A corporate thriller which takes its time to get down to the business but once it does it leaves you thoroughly satisfied. The book grabs your attention with the word go. The entire concept of having an organization to fight the evils of corporate world is something very appealing though the way it has been put in is a tad unbelievable. The initial pages keep you hooked but at the same time make you wonder where the story is leading to.

The author takes us to Turkey for Lazuli Playshop for the protagonists induction in the guild, creates all the suspense & hype and then leave it hanging in the middle by saying

"For those who enjoy the journey as much as the destination, and like to get off the main road into alleys, I would like to direct you at this point to a separate report published as a booklet. It details how the game Karmaderie Layers panned out at Lazuli…."

After this points begins the Part II of the book which makes you wonder the need of Part I. the only purpose that it served was that of increasing the confidence of Sanchit but then the author could have had a protagonists who was full of confidence from the word go. But as is said every author has a different story to tell and since this is Arjun’s story let me not question his view.

Part II of the book makes for a wonderful read. The corporate games, the interference of the political goons, Sanchit & Pause’s love story (yes there is one) et. al. The way author weaves the story around the deadlock is worth a read. Another striking thing about the book is the characterization. Each character is created in such a manner that you either like them or hate them you surely will not be indifferent to them.

The best part of the book is its last 30-40 pages; the climax has been build well and leaves you with a high. I have always believed that a good book begins well & ends well and A Flawed God surely satisfies me on both accounts.

Final word, a must read for its unique subject & for the fact that it talks about corporate culture in an intelligent & entertaining manner. It is not one of those corporate satires which many Indian writers have been coming up with. The book goes beyond that level and sets a benchmark for upcoming books.
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