PLOT: 3.5/5
CHARACTERS: 3.5/5
CLIMAX: 3.5/5
WRITING STYLE: 3.5/5
ENTERTAINMENT QUOTIENT: 3.5/5

“He kept staring at himself trying to figure out if he was the same person that he was before. Time changes your perception of yourself. However, despite the distortions on his face and his botched-up hair, he looked dignified.”

–        Manav Vigg, Sherlock and Devdas

The juxtaposition of two iconic characters in the title of the text is reason enough to pick up this book. However, the wordplay in the subtitle is even quirkier. It goes like this – Sherlock homes India/ Devdas gets Sherlocked.

This is indicative of the manner in which the two characters from two very different backgrounds and worlds cross paths. Yet, it is not clear enough as to how the two characters meet and most importantly why.

With a stunning book cover that has the silhouettes of both characters against the backdrop of geographical locales that they originate from and identify with, this book is a fanboy’s tribute to two characters who have managed to survive the waves of time and stood consistently with a name and fame that is irreplaceable.

Nonetheless, at over 100 chapters, Sherlock and Devdas tends to be on the lengthier side though that is not a downside considering the entertaining elements that combine suspense with a lot of mystery, terror, drama, and problem-solving. This also adds to the fact that the chapters are of short length, running a little over 5-6 pages each. This keeps ideas concentrated in each chapter and crisp chapters allow for ease of understanding.

The plot has never-ending twists and turns that keep up the entertainment quotient, add to the mystery element, and get the readers involved through the fact that not everything is easily disclosed. This helps to take the readers into the scenes of the plot that revolves around a murder and the mystery of stolen artifacts.

The plot is jam-packed with a lot of crucial elements that include subplots, analogies, anecdotes, and surprise elements that crop up from nowhere and end up grabbing the attention of the reader and increase the thrilling appeal of a text that is already bound to spark the interest of the reader through its innovative title.

There is no shortage of creative energy in the construction of the plot. The circumlocutory scenes evolve at a swift and moderate pace that helps in the evolution of the two characters who blend seamlessly, though they belong to very different arenas. This strange merging creates an effect that is hard to describe but can be described as one that leaves the readers feeling enthusiastic and excited about this detective fiction.

Another fact is that there is no overbearing burden of the fame and popularity of the characters on the plot. Though both Sherlock and Devdas are well known, the focus of the plot remains on the crime scenes and the cues that will help the story create a fruitful conclusion.

Sherlock and Devdas has a major climax with several minor climaxes throughout the text. The major climax may seem like the story is nearing a solution and that the mystery may be soon solved, but it throws the reader into a new set of adventures. Yet, the major climax is well-executed and well-timed. It goes halfway to solving the crime scenes only to give an estimate to the reader about how deep-seated and complex the work of detectives is.

In this sense, the plot is slightly more inclined towards the character of Sherlock as it bases itself on his professional activities. However, this does not negate the contributions of Devdas. On the contrary, it goes on to show that Devdas is beyond a drunk lover and has a lot of other skills and sides to his personality. This serves to pluck the characters from their usual spaces to adjust and cooperate in bringing a meaningful end to an otherwise complicated heist novel.

What brings the two main characters together is the fact that they both know a lot of things that the other doesn’t, and this is the reason behind their interdependence. They slowly tend to become indispensable to each other as much as to the solving of the issues at hand in a combined manner.

Both characters are well-constructed with their characteristic traits such as Sherlock’s magnifying glass and Devdas’ silver bottle of wine. However, their charm lies not only in their ability to adapt, but also to fit in within a modern setup that makes this modern adaptation an enjoyable read.

The writing style is lucid and easy to follow, with apt vocabulary that does not hinder the progress of the reader, while keeping factual descriptions appropriate and understandable. There is no overburdening use of technical terminology or sewing of unusual phrases. The simplicity of the writing allows the reader to focus on the facts as they unfold and keeps them on their toes. 

Overall, a highly recommended read for fans of mystery, thrillers, and crime fiction.

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