Where Angels Prey

Where Angels Prey is a novel by Ramesh S Arunachalam. Please refer to www.whereangelsprey.com for more information

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Praise for Where Angels Prey (Authrored by Ramesh S Arunachalam)

The endorsements expressed about this book are strictly opinions of the individuals concerned. They are not the views of the organizations/institutions that these individuals represent and/or positions that these individuals hold.

“The author has taken certain well-recognised features of India’s microfinance industry. He has then blended it with such creative licence as a writer is entitled to, to weave a compelling narrative that leaves the reader guessing where fact ends and fiction begins” – D. Sampathkumar Editorial Consultant- The hindu Business Line

“Wow, what an amazing, engaging, honest, searing tale! I absolutely adored this book. I started to read it and I was hooked. I could not put it down until I reached the end. A completely believable and mind boggling eyeopener of a tale of greed, corruption and altruism and its effect on the desperately poor. Beautifully written, with not one word out of place, it gives a very clear and scary picture of what could and does go wrong in India today. An amazing book which will stay with me,” - Renita D’Silva Author of ‘Monsoon Memories’, ‘The Forgotten Daughter’ and ‘The Stolen Girl’

“Where Angels Prey is an engaging and touching story of the collision of altruism and aspiration. Its narration of how the Indian rural poor suffer from this collision, in the context of the spectacular growth and equally spectacular crisis of the Andhra Pradesh microfinance industry, shocks and moves. I found it a most enjoyable, but also most disturbing, read!” – Matthew Gamser, CEO, SME Finance Forum, International Finance Corporation, Washington DC, USA

“During the very spectacular implosion of microfinance in Andhra Pradesh in 2010, Ramesh Arunachalam was merciless in his analysis. Combining field trips, secondary research and his experience in the rural development space, he stripped bare the malaise in the sector. It is excellent that he has now parsed all that know how into this racy entertaining novel.” – M Rajshekhar, Senior Journalist, Scroll.in and former Senior Assistant Editor (Rural India, Environment), The Economic Times

“This novel is a brilliant piece of work from a person who has seen at close quarters the microfinance industry’s rise and fall in Andhra Pradesh. The plot, fit for a movie, is beautifully woven into all the happenings that have plagued the sector. It makes for such a compelling read that it can’t be put down even once!” – Madhusudhan Lagisetty, Assistant Vice President, Tata AIG Life Insurance Co Ltd

“Money is trust encrypted; the story of how it can be used to destroy trust in the name of the poor is vividly portrayed in this highly entertaining book…the title says it all.” – Al Fernandez, Chairman NABFINS Ltd and Padmashree Awardee 2000

“Where Angels Prey is art imitating life … a great read the first and the second time around.” – Jami Solli, Executive Director of the Global Alliance for Legal Aid (GALA), USA

“Really enjoyed the novel Where Angels Prey…. Its unique plot and fast pace make it a very entertaining and smooth read.” – Prof M S Sriram, formerly Professor at IIM (Ahmedabad) and currently Visiting Professor at IIM (Bangalore)

“Where Angels Prey is wonderfully written and captivating. I thought I’d read a chapter, but the narrative was so gripping I went through the whole book at one stretch.” – V Ramamurthy, I.A.S. (Retd), 1959 Batch

“Where Angels Prey pulls and absorbs you into its plot and holds you there from start to finish.” – Joy Deshmukh-Ranadive, Global Head, Corporate Social Responsibility, Tata Consultancy Services

“A Brilliant Read—Where Angels Prey blurs the line between fiction and truth. From a man who understands money as well as anyone I know, this book paints the two worlds that wrestle in India in the 21st century. Descriptive, taut, with well-etchedout characters, and most importantly entertaining. This book is crying out to be made into a film!” – Anshuman Jha, Actor

“Riveting…. Designed to be the ideal solution to meet the financial needs of the poor, somewhere the microfinance sector decided to change course to be in the commercial, profit-making zone, placing millions of lives at the risk of failure and complete bankruptcy. Many sector leaders became the same demons, if not worse, that they swore to slay. The book beautifully highlights the interconnectedness of issues and actors, helping the reader analyse the situation on the ground and questioning many of the so-called ‘accepted’ truths. Congratulations to Ramesh for having successfully converted his long-standing experience with the sector into a gripping narrative that will have readers asking for much more.” – Moutushi Sengupta, Director–India, MacArthur Foundation

“From rural Andhra Pradesh to the shiny lobbies of Wall Street, this financial thriller is a must read for everybody. Don’t worry if you’re not familiar with microfinance because Ramesh Arunachalam breaks down the concepts and the scams associated with microfinance in this entertaining saga. This book boasts of Arunachalam’s sheer brilliance as a writer and as a financial expert. Smooth, fast and nail-biting! I wonder when the movie is going to be out!” – Anand Bhaskar, Musician

“Fantastic storyline, but startlingly realistic; written racily, yet in impeccable English. Interweaving fact and fiction, this novel is a creative and compelling read.” - G R Swaminathan, Assistant Solicitor General of India

“No one doubted the power of microfinance in pulling millions out of poverty. But, a spate of suicides by the borrowers in 2010 raised more questions than answers. For an inside story of what happened and why, you don’t need to go farther than this brilliant yet entertaining novel, which is so hard to put down. Ramesh’s idea to write the microfinance story as fiction is ingenious. The intrigue behind the rise and fall of the sector could be brought out no holds barred. It’s a must read. Like one of the characters in the book said, ‘We owe it to them—to each of those fifty plus people who have been robbed of their lives, and to the hundreds of thousands of others whose trust has been violated’.” – S Sivakumar, Architect, ITC e-Choupal

“Where Angels Prey is really an excellent read! This graphic exploration of the once universally-lauded microfinance industry is bang on target. It works not just as a great read but as something to make you think a little deeper along the way. Written with flair, verve and a superb eye for detail—which is not surprising as Arunachalam is India’s leading microfinance analyst—this gripping novel is a trip into the darker side of the poverty industry as it rampages and careens through the lives of the poor under cover of actually helping them. I look forward to the film in due course—it will be India’s very own ‘Wall Street’!” – Milford J. B. Bateman PhD, Freelance consultant on local economic development, Visiting Professor of Economics, Juraj Dobrila at Pula University, Croatia and Adjunct Professor of Development Studies, St Marys University, Halifax, Canada

“I read Where Angels Prey by Ramesh Arunachalam in one sitting. A tightly and well written plot. Yes, it’s true the poor lead doomed lives. There is an occasional break, a sliver of dawn but that proves elusive though not enough for a few determined reporters to find a story. Will their efforts end and end well or is there a sequel. Only time and Ramesh can tell if the crooks take it all” – R. Vijaykumar, PhD, IAS (1978), Secretary, Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DONER), Govt of India, New Delhi

“Where Angels Prey – What a wonderful read! I loved the book and most especially the philosophical puzzle of how it ends. This MUST READ rip-roaring piece of fiction races the reader through the halls of the Mumbai and New York Stock exchanges and into the villages of Andhra Pradesh. Where Angels Prey exposes the worst of what can happen when commercial interests and desperation collide: a train wreck tragic in every way. At the heart of the story, as two journalists work unstoppably to interpret a rain of motives, they uncover why and how the angels prey.” – Kim Wilson, Faculty, The Fletcher School, Tufts University

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