Enter Varun, parttime drug dealer and fulltime genius. He turns around the gaming company before disaster strikes. Meanwhile, the investigators plunge headlong into the shady world of bitcoins and the Dark Net, websites that only exist for illegal transactions—drugs, sex and money. God Is a Gamer culminates in a stunning climax where money means nothing, assassination is taught by the ancient Greeks, and nothing is as it seems.
Racy, that’s the word. The books sets of on a sprint right from the word go, and takes you through some mind boggling situations. Warning! You won’t get time to catch some breath, so better inhale deeply before you take the plunge. From Washington DC to Goa to Mumbai, the Ravi does a wonderful job of building in so many layers in the plot that it keeps the reader engaged till the last page – just as a crime thriller should. In fact, most of Ravi Subramaniam’s books exhibit a similar quality (I have read 3, including GisG), but it only has gotten better with his current offering.
The techniques of the crime are well thought out – I particularly liked the ATM heist. I wondered why Ravi did not elaborate anywhere what bitcoins where, for the uninitiated like me, but then, hey, that’s what the internet is for! By not doing so, he managed to keep the curiosity alive till the very end.
There are, however, a few things that could have been done better. The plot has a lot of inconsistencies. Aditya doesn’t really show the emotions you would expect a father who has just found a long lost son would show. No one protagonist comes up as a strong one. Swami and Sundeep – the two characters from God is a Banker, are quite diminished in their roles here. I really wondered what they were doing. And while I liked the twist in the last chapter, the long and winding prologue is a dampener. The explanation could somehow have been built into the main narration itself – it looks as if the story stopes incomplete and an attempt has been made to explain and make the reader understand. Surely, the reader is much intelligent than that.
Overall, God is a Gamer – A good choice for a one time read.
His debut novel, If God was a Banker, won the 2008 Golden Quill Readers’ Choice Award and, more recently, The Incredible Banker won the 2011 Economist-Crossword Book Award in the ‘Popular’ category. He won the Crossword book award for The BANKSTER in 2012.
Ravi lives in Mumbai with his Biotechnologist turned banker wife, Dharini and his fourteen year old daughter Anusha.