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Three idiots in a dark wonderland

29 Oct
Three idiots in a dark wonderland

The three wise monkeys – a Review
Have you ever laundered money? Do you know how to evade tax, cook the books, open benami offshore accounts, and turn black money into white? Well, Jeet Gyan, chartered accountant and author, in his second novel The Three Wise Monkeys, tells you how. He even draws diagrams to explain it.
Do you think accounts are mind numbingly dull? And auditors are the most boring of people? I did so too, till I met the three wise monkeys, the protagonists of the novel, Amar Akbar and Antony. These three idiots are, like the author, chartered accountants, but probably unlike the author, passed with great difficulty, are naive, jobless and not very competent. They are also idealistic, and aspire to be honest auditors, which it appears, is an oxymoron. Moreover, the figures they study are not only the ones found in dusty ledgers.
But fortunately, like most males, the blood does not reach their brains when in the presence of attractive women, and other more vital organs take up the job of thinking. Thus when our heroes meet three ladies who send temperatures soaring, their life changes, and they are thrown in the middle of the rollercoaster real world of dirty finance, and their world turns topsy turvy.
They meet up with sleazy businessmen with feuding wives, conniving girlfriends, shady brokers, bought awards, sibling rivalries, policemen, income tax sleuths, both straight and crooked, bar girls, musclemen, cows, and a variety of other interesting creatures.
They audit desolate dockyards in Kutch, dairy farms and even dance bars and end up in jail, on breaking news headlines, in glitzy parties and exotic locales they would not have dreamt of in their previous, innocent and impecunious existence. This world is a far cry from the Irani cafes, their previous home from home.
The book takes you through the bumpy ride of the three idiots or wise monkeys who see hear and speak very little evil through the wonderland of the dark world of high illegal finance, with a fair sprinkling of babes, bosoms and bimbos for glitter.
I would rather not reveal more of the intricate plot and let the suspense remain as to if and how the trio survive the ride and whether their dreams come true.
One word of caution though; the author attempts a breezy comedy style of recounting, and it seems he tries too hard. The effect desired is the comic thriller, but it seems to fall a bit short. A straight thriller may have worked better.

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