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Vicki O. (Boston, MA)
What an Impressive Debut!
A.X. Ahmad has crafted a riveting mystery with a highly unlikely but engaging hero, Ranjit Singh and he is one of the reasons I enjoyed this so much. Singh has fled his past in the Indian military and now lives on Martha's Vineyard where he labors as a caretaker. When he takes a position working for a Senator, he discovers that the Senator has secrets that could have international implications. As the intrigue unfolds, Ahmad uses flashbacks very effectively to reveal what Singh is hiding and for me this character development is very important. Add crisp dialogue and vivid descriptions and you have a recipe for making me look forward to Ahmad's next book.
Joe S. (Port Orange, FL)
An exciting read.
I found this book to be an interesting and exciting read. The scenes set in Kashmir when the main character was an Indian Army officer leading a combat patrol were, to me, some of the best parts of the book. The rest of the book is an intriguing and suspenseful action thriller with well developed characters. I thoroughly enjoyed the book..
Maggie R. (Canoga Park, CA)
Keeps you reading . . .
This was a fast read because I couldn't stop till it was over. Good use of unusual mix of characters and odd plot. Though there were far fetched elements, they didn't detract from the pull of the plot.
Laurie F. (Brookline, MA)
This was an interesting book, fast moving, interesting cultural issues, good character development until about 75 into the story.
Carol E. (Stone Mountain, GA)
The Caretaker by A.X. Ahmad
As Rajit started getting deeper into trouble I had a feeling it was not going to end well. Many disconnected twists and a very short disappointing ending. Too bad as I was hoping for more.
The Caretaker by A.X. Ahmad was a fast-paced novel that was an easy read. The unexpected twists and turns provided enough suspense and intrigue to keep me interested, but at times it was a little difficult to understand the direction of the story. Ranjit Singh's flashback experiences as an Indian army captain gave a better understanding of his personality and some of his actions and decisions, but I yearned for more character development of his and the Senator's families. A few of the events and coincidences were a bit implausible, but did not detract from the overall premise of the story. I enjoyed the book, but because of its need for more details and explanation in some areas, I would be selective as to whom I would recommend it.
Ann S. (Shenandoah, IA)
I am drawn to books with international plot lines. I found the conflict between cultures to be realistically portrayed. I assume the author is planning another book; at least the ending led me to think that. It did not bring the story to a "comfort" close, but was certainly intriguing. I look forward to the next book.
Barbara G. (Lisle, IL)
The Caretaker presents readers with characters who all seek something elusive, be it absolution for a prison term resulting from trumped up charges, for power and wealth beyond one's racial and economic background, for acceptance in a culturally diverse land, or even the love of a parent. Along the way we learn about the background of the Sikh religion and political struggles on the international stage. All of the characters have suffered losses that affect them deeply, and in some ways this former soldier turned Martha's Vineyard estate gardener becomes a caretaker of all their secrets.
Erin G. (Dulles, VA)
Timely, thoughtful thriller
Ranjit Singh is a complex, fascinating protagonist and his presence makes this book a consistently compelling read. Anyone who loves classic, John LeCarre-style thrillers will really enjoy the mixture of international intrigue and thoughtfully portrayed characters. The glimpses of Sikh life and beliefs, in addition to the contrasting views of American and Indian culture, made this a one-of-a-kind read. I hope this will be the start of a series. I'd be very interested in reading more novels with Ranjit Singh as the main character. I was less enamored with Anna, who was possibly too enigmatic, but all in all I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys the genre.