Sunday, October 30, 2016

Confessions on an Island by Ayan Pal - book review

The cover
A beautifully woven story within a perfectly wound cover. The woman’s face against the scenic background on the front cover, gives one, the exotic feel of the island even before one ventures into the book. The title with all its majesty, speaks for how powerful a story lies beneath it. The back cover has an interesting blurb of the story.
The blurb
An abducted woman trapped on an island is given a chance to escape, provided she tells stories emerging from the stories that her intriguing abductor tells her. Clueless about why she is being forced to participate in a game of Russian Matryoshka Dolls, the woman, a bestselling author, decides to play along. And therein begins a thrilling tale narrated by an island.
Of a man and a woman consumed by the power of their imagination and truth, even as the stakes are gradually raised. Soon the only way out is in- into the past, heart and mind. The island is ready to confess. Are you ready for the truth?
About the author
Ayan Pal is a Kolkata-based IT professional and author who has received several accolades in his career so far. These include the honor of his book being a record holder in the Limca Book of Records, the title of ‘Distinguished Toastmaster’ from Toastmasters International for demonstrating outstanding communication and leadership skills, and a ‘Brandon Hall Award’ considered as the ‘Academy Awards’ by Learning, Talent and Business Executives worldwide.
He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering from VTU, Karnataka and has completed a course in Education Technology from SDSU, California.
As an author, he is known for his acclaimed short stories in the Amazon bestsellers Chronicles of Urban Nomads, 21 Tales to Tell and When they spoke. He has contributed to India’s first composite novel, Crossed and Knotted, Upper Cut, Her Story, Rudraksha, Arranged to Love, Tonight’s the Night and Long Story Short. He is a columnist of lifestyle magazine ThnkMkt and blogger at Open Road Review.
Passionate about public speaking, Ayan also loves reading, creative writing, watching and reviewing films, listening to music, and binge watching his favourite TV shows. Confessions on an Island is his debut novel.
The plot
A man, a woman and an island are the components of the happening story. A bestselling author is abducted by an anonymous man to a secluded island. Unlike usual abductions, the motive here is not money. He claims it to be an act of redemption. The woman, on the other hand, is totally oblivious to what he has in mind, while going through the tormenting pain of abuse and finally giving up her futile efforts, as she realizes there’s no escape but to abide by.
As he pulls her into the game of Russian Matryoshka Dolls, she easily gives in, being a storyteller herself. The woman spins tales out of her imagination, intending to convey her feelings through them. At a certain point, she understands that his stories are nothing but who they are and what made them end up here. The game goes on and the truth gradually unveils with each story. When the known and the unknown switch places, impulse gets into action, leaving them with an end that is irreversible at any cost.
The execution
It is the tale of two people with twisted pasts of rough childhood, broken relationships, lost love, betrayal and death. One event leads to another, resulting in the need to avenge the loss. Life or death- the fate of the woman is just a few stories ahead of her.
Travelling through the book is almost like playing a memory game, except the cards are stories which the reader not only correlates with the subsequent ones, but also enjoys them together as well as separately. Once all are the cards of the past are dealt, the result is in the hands of fate to be revealed.
The narration
The very beginning of the story surpasses the threshold of curiosity. To peak the interest, there are two narrators, the woman and the island while the man is what the reader’s mind comes up with, after hearing to what the narrators and the emerging stories have to say.  The author also adds spice to the stories within stories, with sex and sexuality as a reflection of what the characters are composed of. The narration is so fantastic that the thrill bar is raised a notch higher with each chapter. The icing on the cake is the climax which is completely unpredictable by any chance.
With all the dynamic stories, mysteries, brilliant execution and turbulent narration, the book turns out to be a power-packed psychological thriller.On the whole, Confessions on an Island is one of a kind and deserves to be a celebrated number under Indian-writing.
Blurb: 5/5
Description: 5/5
Writing style: 5/5
Excerpt: 5/5
Book cover: 5/5
Overall rating: 5/5
Book details:
Author: Ayan Pal
Genre: Thriller
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Readomania
Language: English
Pages: 190
Year of publication: 2016
Price: 200 INR
Buy paperback: Amazon


  1. Thank you so much for this brilliant rating and review! I am honored to say the least!

    1. The pleasure is entirely mine, Sir. Reading your book was a magical experience. :)