I had borrowed around 6 books from a friend a few months back. I didn’t really like the blurb of The Taj Conspiracy and another book. So, I had decided not to read them. I even told my friend that she can come to get her books since I didn’t really think I would read the 2 books left. But when she didn’t show up, I just had a feeling that maybe I should give it a chance. This is how I picked up The Taj Conspiracy. A book that I almost didn’t read!
When Mehrunisa, a Mughal scholar, stumbles upon the body of Taj Mahal’s supervisor right next to Mumtaz’s tomb, she is falsely implicated in the murder. She soon discovers a conspiracy to destroy and defame the Taj Mahal based on an urban legend that Taj Mahal was, in fact, a Shiva temple called ‘Tejo Mahalay’. As she is tangled deeper and deeper into the mystery, she is almost killed twice and she realizes that no one can be trusted.
The book was amazing and I’m so glad that I read it. It gave me all the Dan Brown feels while reading especially The Da Vinci Code with an Indian twist. Other than the overall deja vu feeling, the book was completely different from The Da Vinci Code. Throughout the book, various lone incidents keep happening and they are almost tied up nicely towards the end.
My favorite character was Mehrunisa. She is smart, audacious, and determined to find who killed Arun, the Taj supervisor. Her grit is what really brings up new evidence in the case. All the characters are very realistic. Being an Indian, I could identify with a lot of things mentioned in the book.
The book was fast-paced and kept me hooked throughout. The author has done good research to write this book. And never did I feel that it was written by someone whose mother tongue is not English!
The only downside of the book was the ending. It did not live up to the hype created by the rest of the book. I felt as if the ending was rushed and nothing much happened. Some of the separate incidents that were happening did not really make sense and there was no closure. I really wish the ending was done better and I could have given the book a 5 star.
Anyway, I am looking forward to reading more books by the author. I’ve just found that The Taj Conspiracy is the first book in a trilogy and there’s more of Mehrunisa to read about. I might just give those books a go first.
My Rating: 4⭐/5.