BR #37 | The Curse of Anuganga | Harini Srinivasan | TreeShade Books | ★★★★★

Book - The Curse of Anuganga
Author - Harini Srinivasan
Publisher - TreeShade Books
Rating - ★★★★

Author Bio: (from book) An aficionado of literature, history and dance, Harini Srinivasan has found innovative ways of bringing her passions to her work. Among her achievements is her contribution as an editor of several prestigious publications published by the Publications Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India, such as Selected Speeches of the President: Pranab Mukherjee; The Republican Ethic: Selected Speeches of Shri Ram Nath Kovind; Indian Dance – Through a Critic’s Eye; Abode Under the Dome; Legends of Indian Silver Screen; and Selected Speeches of the Vice President: M. Venkaiah Naidu. She also has to her credit a children’s book “The Wizard Tales - Adventures of Bun-Bun” (now into its second print) and a blog on classic Hindi films and books (

Along the way, she undertook different roles (Civil Servant, Project Manager, Communications Professional and Editor) across countries (India, Germany and the Netherlands). A doting mother of a 10 year old son, Harini Srinivasan lives with her family in Gurgaon.

Book Review: "The Curse of Anuganga" by Harini Srinivasan is a historical detective fiction serving some Sherlock Holmes type thrill set in ancient India. In a world of crime at present where modern means of tracking and technology is used to catch criminals today, this story is unique as it serves a plate full of means, techniques, and procedures employed in the past to grab intruders. A positive note conveyed in this murder mystery is the role played by society and communal efforts to reach a conclusion in solving the case.

Shaunaka, the protagonist of the story, is not so keen on inheriting his father's business as a goldsmith. Set during the rule of Chandragupta, this story is set on an important town ruled by his daughter after the defeat of another ruling dynasty. On a fine day, fate lands Shaunaka in the middle of a murder scene - the murder of the employer Vinayashura in whose house he had been working when the crime took place. The Dandaposika or the police chief soon recognizes his observational abilities and hires his help for assistance along with his adopted brother Ashwini in solving this murder case. Acting undercover for the police, Shaunaka uncovers many mysteries as he goes about in town unearthing further details and even fearing the role of traitors inside the kingdom posing a threat to the Prince. Who are these traitors? Who is responsible for the death of Vinayashura? Is there some larger conspiracy at work? Are these by any means interlinked? All these questions are answered in a riveting historical fiction where thrill, murder, and mystery rise from the ashes of past mishaps to cover eventful wrongdoings inherent in human nature.

One may agree that no crime thriller is complete without some eavesdropping, action, and help from family members during unexpected times. This beautiful story stands a testament to these Indian beliefs where readers not only enjoy uncovering the killer but also get a glimpse into the life of people during 400 CE carefully researched by the author. It is fascinating to see how even the taverns, markets, trees, and even a famous historical figure perceived till today as a musician, play a significant role in solving the mystery as readers are provided all answers to questions in the end, although in a beautifully crafted dramatic way!

Grab your copy: