Remember to follow the other stops on the tour for a better chance at winning the Giveaway.
Find the schedule here.
What are you currently reading?
To be honest, I haven’t started reading a new book but there is a long list of books on my list. Over the years, I have read many books and liked quite a few. I like to read anything that is interesting from management & economics to fiction, no subject/ genre is binding.
Do you have a favorite author? Who is it?
I love to read books from lot of different authors. As a kid I was Sir Arthur Conon Doyle was my favorite and these days I enjoy reading the works of James Patterson, Robert Ludlum and Dan Brown.
When did you start writing?
As a kid I was pretty introvert and used to observe more than share. My mom for one wasn’t really happy about it. But that did result in making up stories. My first stories were based on super humans and had a lead character who could jump over buildings but could not get away from the crowd. I do think that contradiction manifests in the characters of ‘Ten Days in October’. I had written blogs etc. before but this novel is the first attempt at book writing.
Why do you write?
As an author my role is not to just tell a story but to connect with my readers and force them to think. I have tried to achieve the same in ‘Ten Days in October’ and based on the feedback I have received so far I will like to think that the effort probably resulted in some good discussions. I intend to continue writing with thought provoking socio-economic issues at the center stage. I do look for stories in the events happening around me.
Who is your intended audience and why should they read your book?
Anyone who likes crime fiction in international settings, interested in customs and culture of rural western India should read this book. Being a crime fiction, the novel is not suitable for anyone under the age of 15. I haven’t allowed my 8 year old son to read it yet.
The story of this novel unfolds over ten days in October, but that is not the reason behind the title. The ten days have great significance not only from mythological and religious perspective but also for the plot. The first nine days of the story line happen over Hindu festival of Navratri, which literally means ‘nine-days’. Navratri is the celebration of feminine divinity in the form of universal mother, Devi (Goddess). The first three days celebrate the Devi in the form of Durga, second set of three days honor the Devi as Lakshmi, and final three days are dedicated to Saraswati. Riding a lion, armed with weapons of Gods Goddess Durga is destroyer of evil and epitomizes valor. Lakshmi is goddess of wealth and prosperity. Not just material but also spiritual wealth and purpose are the blessings of this form. Saraswati is celebration of knowledge and wisdom. She is often depicted sitting on a rock, symbolizing the knowledge that stays with us always. Following the nine days of rituals and worship, the 10th day is celebrated as Dussehra, which is also known as Vijaya- Dashmi. It is celebrated to mark the victory of Lord Rama over the demon, Ravana.
Even when so much emphasis and respect is given to the mother form of God, India is still trying to combat the growth in crime against women from female feticide and infanticide to harassment and dowry deaths. With just 10% women representation in government and parliament the laws that deem everyone equal don’t always do justice and fall short. The perpetrators get away because of lack of political and enforcement will power, misuse of power and corruption.
The novel is inspired by one of the dark incidents that happened around my home town in India and highlights the social issues while staying in the genre. That is why I believe the novel is worth reading.
If you could go back in time and meet one famous person or legend in history, who would it be? Why? What would you say to them?
I am a major history buff. If I had the ability to meet people from history, then I don’t think I can limit it to one person. From the Pharoh Ramsey to Gandhi and Abraham Lincoln, I will have questions for lot of people. I would definitely like to know the rationale behind the decisions that shaped and changed the world.
Tell us about your cover art. Who designed it? Why did you go with that particular image/artwork?
The cover of the book is designed by my younger brother Saurabh Malpani and his creative team at Artha studio (www.arthastudio.com).
The protagonist, Chavan is fond of drinking chai (Indian Masala Tea). He can’t even get his day started without a cup. The cover cleverly blends that with the first homicide of the novel (Anil Kokate hanging from the tree) and the chai in the cup is depicted as blood.
Who would you cast for the main characters if your book became a movie?
This is a tricky question for me. Given that ‘Ten Days in October’ is based in India, I think it will be hard to include Hollywood actors in leading roles. That said, it may be a good opportunity to look at Bollywood for help. I think Ajay Devgan, Akshay Kumar and/ or Nawazuddin Siddiqui may be fit for the lead roles.
The location will of course be Sangamner where the story takes place and I would love to see Anurag Kashyap direct it.
How about an excerpt from your book meant to capture our imagination and make us want to read more?
Inspector Shivaji Chavan then looked at Amol, the victim’s son, and said, “As soon as the doctor completes the examination, I will hand the body over to you. Please wait for few minutes more.” Then he opened the main door. The smell of rotted flesh mixed with Formaldehyde forced him to hold his breath. Gayakwad was standing inside holding a handkerchief on his nose. The postmortem room was well lit with a white tiled platform in the middle of the room for the examination. Dr. Sheikh was done with the autopsy. He had a couple of assistants with him. Seeing Chavan, Dr.Sheikh stopped what he was doing. He took off his gloves and washed his hands in the nearby sink. He grabbed his notepad and walked over to Chavan.
“I am almost done with the examination; I can quickly review the results with you and release the body to your custody.”
“Sure, go ahead,” said Chavan.
“Stitch it up,” Dr. Sheikh instructed the assistants and quickly flipped through his notes. “Sahib, in my opinion, the cause of death is asphyxia due to hanging. There is about four cm wide ligature marks running from the midline around the thyroid cartilage, symmetrically upward on both sides of the neck. The mark matches with the rope that was brought in with the body. I also think that it was a simple knot and running noose. The hyoid bone is fractured as well, which is not a surprise given the age of the victim? Microscopic examination of the thyroid gland and salivary gland shows focal interstitial hemorrhage which is consistent with antemortem nature of hanging. I won’t rule out suicide altogether, but I have a couple of other interesting things to report. There is light ligature mark around the wrists that would suggest that the wrists were tied together at some point. Also, all five fingers of the right hand are swollen, and the X-ray revealed that the fingers were broken. And my guess is that this injury was antemortem too. Also, it appears that there was some cloth stuffed in his mouth. I found some traces of fabric in his tract. Finally, looks like he had broken ribs a while back. ”
“How is that possible? How could someone break their fingers and then commit suicide?”
“That is something I can’t explain either,” Dr. Sheikh replied. “On the face of it, it does look like that force was applied to break the bones, so I don’t think Kokate did it himself. Maybe he got into a fight, and then something else triggered the suicide.”
“That is one possible explanation. Can you say for sure that this is a suicide and not homicide?”
“If you discount the broken bones, it does looks like a suicide case.”
Ten Days in October
by Ashish Malpani
GENRE: Fiction: Crime
‘5 a.m. phone call broke Police Inspector Shivaji Chavan’s sleep informing him that local jeweler Anil Kokate, was found hanging from a tree on the banks of Pravara River in a small town of rural India. Although the signs point to an open and shut case of suicide, Chavan suspects foul play. While trying to find the missing pieces of the story he finds more hidden skeletons and comes across astonishing & cruel past of the victim. What begins as a routine investigation quickly turns darker, ruthless and pressing. Can Chavan handle the pressure of his superiors, local media and frightened masses? Can he navigate the system to reach the killer? Can he solve the moral dilemma when he comes face to face with the killer?
Paperback Amazon (US Edition $7.99)
Paperback Amazon (UK Edition £5.49)
Ebook Amazon (Kindle Edition WW $5.99)
(Germany, France, Spain & Italy Edition €7.79- €8.02) http://www.curiua.com/p/ten-days-in-october/9781533500977
Smashwords (iBook/ Nook etc. Edition): https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/639343
FOLLOW the tour and comment for a better chance of winning the GIVEAWAY.
Find the tour STOPS here.
ENTER HERE FOR A CHANCE TO WIN
$10 Amazon/BN GC
Ashish Malpani is an Indian-American freelancer and blogger. Born in Sangamner, a small town in rural India, he spent much of his adult life in Austin, Texas. A technology product marketer by trade, Ashish earned his MSE from Purdue University and MBA from the University of Texas.
Ashish fell in love with reading and traveling at a young age. As a kid he had two dreams in life: to write a novel and to travel around the world. Thirty eight countries and counting, Ashish has explored various cultures and captured the world through the lens of his camera with his wife Samta and son Ayan.
Author website: www.ashishmalpani.com