Monday, 25 November 2013

Kane and Abel - Book Review

Author: Jeffrey Archer
First Published: 1979

One of the masterpieces from Jeffrey Archer's desk, Kane and Abel is what beautiful story telling is all about. The story of two remarkable individuals; William Lowell Kane and Abel Rosnovski inspired from the biblical story Cain and Abel, run parallel in this novel, set in a different era with a distinguished story line.

Born on the same day (18-Apr-1906); one with a silver spoon in his mouth while the other as an orphan whose mother dies giving birth to him in the woods, Kane and Abel are two genius protagonists and the story is the fight of who can persevere till the end.

William is educated in the best schools and universities in the world and exhibits his prowess in the world of banking. His life takes a turn with the death of his father. He goes through a lot of turmoil in his life and fights through all adversities to become the president of the largest bank in the world. In contrast, Abel's life is difficult right from the start. A Polish immigrant in America, his initial years were spent in genocide camps where he witnessed and experienced horrific events. He travels through countries in inhumane condition and takes up odd jobs to survive. His zeal to make a mark in the world and hunt for perfection in everything he does, whether working as a waiter or the owner of the same hotel takes him to the top of the hospitality industry.

While you think that the individual stories of both the protagonists is spell binding, the brilliance of the story teller is exhibited when the paths of these two business moguls cross during the most adverse economic situation in America - The Great Depression. The battle of wits of Kane and Abel and the plot twists keep you glued to the book.

This is a story of emotions, tragedy and craftsmanship; but most importantly inspiration is what this novel spells. I have read a lot of Jeffrey Archer books - both novels and short stories, but personally I find that Kane and Abel is his best work till date. 

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