Book review | The Perfect Drug by Chaitanya Saini

Author: Chaitanya Saini

Genre: Romance, Drama 

No. of pages: 450

Published on: 1st January 2018 

Published by: Pakshi Publication

Format: Paperback 

My rating: ★★☆☆☆

Buddha meditated for six years, and Shiva had his mountain. Could there be a drug that might induce enlightenment? A substance that could cause us to attain a heightened state of consciousness, the gaining of a perspective that perforates this veil of maya, revealing the divine in us and others a well? One that makes us perceive that the biggest problem of the world isn’t global warming, air pollution, or overpopulation, but is a global demented state of consciousness, the demon of ignorance that has ingested this whole wide world?

Ananya synthesizes such a divine drink with immense difficulty, and tends it with great care—but the attainment of power often brings its abuse. It an attempt to beat the demon outside, he mutes all the voices contrary to his ambition including his much-revered intuition. He fails miserably but his torture endures. Does his indulgence keep Ananya entangled in the web of illusion, or will he emerge a true, conscious being, devoid of all attachments? Is the answer he has to discover for himself.

A brilliant and ambitious Chemistry student Ananya, takes admission in St. Stephens College. His hard work and passion gets him through college life pretty well and when he falls in love with a student from Miranda House, Ananya's life becomes more colourful. But suddenly Anushree disappears from Ananya's life. It's then that he comes across a book called 'Psychedelic Chemistry' and his journey to create an elixir starts. The elixir can make a person attain such powers that they'll be able to see through a person's chakra, their emotions and feelings. Will Ananya be able to control the power of The Perfect Drug or The Perfect Drug will take control of him and his life?

The book has an amazing and intriguing plot. The story and how the author incorporated chemistry and spirituality in this book is beyond perplexing. But the book has been unnecessarily stretched. What could have been done in 200 pages has been dragged for 450 odd pages. For the first 150 pages I couldn't even understand the point of the book. Only when Ananya's decision to make the elixir came in the scene does the book gets interesting. 

Our protagonist Ananya seems to go through major character changes throughout but the character seems shallow. I didn't get his obsession with pale and smooth skin and curvy body of women. At times I felt that the relationship was solely based on Anushree's looks. I liked how the author shows the likable side of Ananya through his relationship with his cousin and the unlikable side through his relationship with Anushree. 

The author put too much Chemistry concepts in the book making it mostly boring. I would have left reading it but the book's promising plot kept me going. But the ending seemed abrupt and though the author tried to incorporate something mysterious at the very end of the book, he failed. 

The author's writing style didn't really work out for the book. He used Shakespearean language in places in simple dialogues. Words like 'traverse' and 'mirth' in sentences looked out of the place. Sample this following sentence which was used to simply convey that the protagonist's male friend left his company - 'detachment from his masculine mate.' This made the reading experience complex and unpleasant. It was a gobbled mixture of normal conversational language and poetry.

Considering the plot and fascinating use of a myriad of subjects in the book, it was an okay read for me, but not something I'd pick up from the shelves myself. 

I received a copy of the book in exchange of an honest and unbiased review. 


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