Monday, 16 October 2017

Behind the Scenes .......... A New Vikram Rana Mystery


‘Ryan, you are of course a master of these kinds of scenes, so we should be able to close this in one take,’ Paddy, the director said.
He had just outlined the scene in which Ryan would be standing before a mirror and delivering angst-ridden monologue on the pains and ironies of life
‘Yes.. yes.. can we just get the shot done? My stomach ache seems to be getting worse.’ Ryan grimaced in pain ‘At least emoting the scene will not be a problem. It will be my most natural acting,’ Ryan said, screwing up his face in pain.
A film shooting was taking place in the drawing room of a sprawling bungalow in Darjeeling. The camera had been fixed to capture a drunken Bengali gentleman or bhodrolok, being played by the Superstar of Bengali Cinema Ryan Gomez, more popularly known as Dinesh Kumar.  The female lead, Sheila Dhawan was seated nearby, ready for the next shot which involved both of them. Jaya, Sheila’s mother, said, ‘Sheila, I have some Ayurvedic medicine which helped me when I had a similar trouble a week back. Can’t we give him a bit of that?’
Sheila said, ‘Well, it can’t harm him…..’
Olivia, character artist in the film ,said to Ryan, ‘You should just take a Fumedil tablet. It’s very effective.’
Jaya said, ‘ .. this Ayurvedic medicine is very good, it works wonder for me.’
Ryan looked at Jaya and said politely, ‘Thanks… I will try it.’
Jaya hurried out of the room to get the medicine.
The shooting was about to begin by the time she came back and Ryan had taken his place in the set. She put down the glass of medicine on a table beside Ryan’s empty chair. She said to Sheila in an undertone, ‘I am going to the curio shop. Make sure that he drinks the medicine.’
Sheila nodded and Jaya left the set.
Ryan stumbled when he was walking towards the mirror. Paddy shouted, ‘Cut. Cut… No Ryan, you need to walk straight to the mirror. No stumbling.’
Ryan doubled over in a sudden spasm of pain, ‘Dear God, this pain is killing me.’
Sheila handed the glass of medicine to Ryan, ‘Drink this. You might feel better.’
Ryan drank the medicine in one gulp and grimaced, ‘Everything tastes so foul today!’
The producer, Rusty called out to Ryan, ‘We can cancel the shoot if you are not up to it.’
‘No.. I it’s fine,’ Ryan said irritably. ‘I will be okay after some rest. Can we get this shot over with?’
The shooting resumed. This time the scene was approved. Ryan breathed a sigh of relief. Paddy looked at his watch, ‘Oh it’s already lunch time! Let’s do the second scene after lunch. Please hurry up folks. We are already behind schedule.’
Ryan grunted his agreement and said, ‘I think I will skip lunch. I will sleep for some time. Call me once you are ready for the second scene.’
Rusty said, ‘Sure Ryan. Do you want me to help you to your room?’
‘No, I am fine. Don’t treat me like some helpless old codger. You know I can’t stand fuss!’ Ryan snapped. He staggered towards his bedroom, with the film crew looking on in helpless silence.
After lunch break, the cameras were checked. The same room would be used for the next scene. Sheila was in her chair, looking slightly annoyed, as she waited for the shooting to resume. Paddy sent the assistant director, Bala, to inform Ryan that the shooting was about to resume.
Bala came back looking nervous. He approached Paddy and said, hesitantly, ‘I knocked on the door, but Ryan sir is not responding.’
Concerned, Paddy, Sheila, Olivia and Rusty rushed to Ryan’s bedroom. As he still did not respond, they tried to open the door. It was not locked. They entered the room to find Ryan lying inert on the bed. Sheila rushed to the bed and shook the unresponsive figure, ‘Ryan, wake up. Please wake up.’ By this time some more crew members had entered the bedroom.
Rusty said tersely to the assistant director, ‘Bala, send for Dr. Gupta immediately! He lives right next door. All of you, clear out! Let the poor man get some air. Move…. move.’
All the crew members trooped out and Bala ran out to fetch the doctor. Only Sheila, Olivia, Paddy and Rusty remained. Rusty glared at Sheila and said harshly, ‘What medicine did your mother give Ryan? Why is he not responding? And where is Jayadi?’
Sheila looked up from the bed, fear and confusion writ large on her face, ‘What are you saying? It was some Ayurvedic medicine for stomach ailments. Why would my mother cause him any harm?’
Dr. Gupta rushed in at that moment. Rusty turned towards him and said, ‘Ryan was un-well since the morning. Now he is not responding. Please do something!’
Dr. Gupta took Ryan’s pulse. After a moment, he shook his head, ‘I am afraid nothing can be done. He is dead.’
As Rusty looked on confused and helpless, the doctor said sharply, ‘I know Ryan’s medical history. He had no major health problems. His death is certainly very sudden. I am afraid that I cannot issue a death certificate. The police should be called.’
Sheila wept her head on Ryan’s chest. Nobody stepped up to comfort her. Instead all eyes were fixed on her.

Questioningly? Accusingly? Warningly?

Thursday, 7 September 2017

This is a review of my book A Season for Dying in Amazon. I just had to share this because this kind of reviews makes me want to be the world's best writer and continue to entertain my readers. 
Thank you Chandini K I don't know you, but I will forever be grateful to you, because you make me a better writer as I want to please you even more with my next book .
Here is the review:
oh my goodness!! had to give it 5 stars because I couldn't find a single flaw!
1. Good writing? check! (No extensive use of Thesaurus just to sound fancy, simple and smooth writing with impeccable editing)
2. Plot and Story? check! (well researched, not a hollow story with insensible plot. Might not be Sherlock Holmes standards where the twist is at the end you can see it coming but it's totally worth the read too!)
3. Creativity? a 100% check (amidst conventional romantic crap written by the popular but idiotic indian writers this book is actually amazing. Makes one wanna say, "who said Indians can't write crime stories?"
keep up the good work sharmishtha and yes please invest in some marketing.

Monday, 5 June 2017

My latest book "A Season for Dying" has featured in the Amazon Hot New Releases. Thank you Amazon for the honor.
Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #133 Paid in Kindle Store
#12 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Crime, Thriller & Mystery
#28 in Books > Crime, Thriller & Mystery

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Thursday, 4 May 2017

A Season for Dying is #41 in the Amazon Bestseller list.

Customer review 4.2/5 in Amazon

100% positive review in Goodreads.

Grab your copy today!

Wednesday, 26 April 2017


Reviewer : Sarath Babu(
Rating: 5/5
When I got this book, I never realised that the author has already penned few novels. I was made aware of this fact due to the presence of abstract of couple of stories in the end of the novel which seemed equally interesting and intriguing.

Coming to the actual novel – A Season for Dying is a perfect title for the novel since the death occurs eliminating one character or the other throughout the novel. It all begins with a murder of a housewife and it continues with the killing of few more ….

Read the rest at

Reviewer : Rahul Basu
Rating: 5/5

I like to read murder mysteries because the logical skills of finding a pattern and deductive reasoning are often skilfully laid out. Ms Shenoy’s A Season for Dying does not disappoint and illustrates the above point successfully.

Vikram Rana, Hyderabad’s own Byomkesh Bakshi, is at his wit’s end trying to trace a serial killer who is brazen enough to send letters to the press after each murder, challenging the Hyderabad police.

The writing style is simple yet elegant and the plot is challenging keeping the readers hooked.

The author has craftily used red herring and yet leaves tantalising clues behind. But the reader is still thrown off the scent.
In summary, this is a five star book that gets an extra star for captivating me from start to finish.

Rest of the reviews are available in :

Monday, 10 April 2017

Both my ebooks (Vikram Rana Investigates and A season for Dying - A Vikram Rana Mystery) are in the top 100 bestseller list in the crime, thriller and mystery section. I could not have wished for a better start of the day. :-)