Book Review: Chronicler of the Undead, by Mainak Dhar

There are few books that seem to mix two genres, or traverse the fine line between the two. I don’t mind that, as long as they do justice to both. I’ve read romantic thrillers, comical murder mysteries etc. The blurb of this book promised a mix of horror and thriller, while throwing in an aspect that isn’t explored in IWE (or at least, not to my knowledge) — the undead or zombies. It also helped that I had heard about the author from friends as a writer who was established in the genre of horror.

The story is set in India, at a time when no one has survived but the narrator, who believes that the purpose of him being alive might be to write about it and be The Chronicler of the Undead. so that’s what he does. the book, starting on the 94th day, is a journal of his observations and thoughts as he watches the undead, and essentially, his fight for suvival in this new world.

I think this is not a book that every reader will love; that much was sure from the moment I started reading the book. The book’s blurb said it was a thriller, so I expected a lot of pace in the narration. While the short chapters (journal entries) helped toward giving that pace, the narration itself, for me, lacked that. That tone was more like normal diary entries, very simple. There aren’t many characters, which keeps the Chronicler’s story prominent. Going from chapter to chapter, it brings out a lot of emotions, from fear to bravery to love. And these bring out a lot of memorable quotes as well. For a horror/thriller genre novel, it had a lot of subtle humor in it too. And quite a few twists and turns. Again, this is an aspect that will feel endearing to some readers.

An appealing cover design, a story that was different and interesting, even quite unique, Chronicler of the Undead has aspects that are appealing. However, it fell short of my expectations as it didn’t engage me from page to page, journal entry to journal entry. It didn’t have the feel of either a thriller or a horror genre book. It didn’t scare me. An average read.


A score of 4 out of 10
A score of 4 out of 10
Book Details
Title: Chronicler of the Undead
Author(s): Mainak Dhar Genre: Fiction
ISBN/ASIN: 9789385152498 Publisher: Westland

Reviewed for Writers Melon in exchange for a copy of the book. No other payment was taken. The views expressed here are mine, and they remain uninfluenced and unbiased.


(© 16th February 2016)

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