Book Review: “Dancing with Demons” by Nidhie Sharma

When a Writer-Director who is an adventure sports enthusiast comes out with her first novel, which is soon to be made into a Bollywood movie, expectations are high. And Nidhie Sharma’s debut novel, “Dancing with Demons” definitely lives up to those expectations. dancingwithdemons

“Dancing with Demons” is written in a language that is raw. Nidhie Sharma has not couched her words in politeness or niceties. And somehow this adds to the story and makes it more real, though there were a few instances, where the English could have been better.

The details which go into describing the moves and rules of the boxing matches show the amount of research that has gone into the story. As I was reading the book, I sort of slipped away into another world, the world of boxing: the emotions and hopes and frustrations of the people in that world.

The title is “Dancing with Demons” and the demons are real. In both Karan’s life and Sonia’s. The pain, the anger, the angst, the frustration that the characters experience in dealing with them are portrayed really well.

I love the way she has built up the characters. Not just Karan and Sonia but the supporting cast as well. Sonia comes across as a strong headed woman. She does not take anything lying down. She fights, she drinks, she is real! So is Karan. You can see his vulnerability under his anger. Jerry as the coach feels for the young Karan and is so upset when Karan blows his career because of his anger that he walks away even though he loves Karan as his own. Madan is a lovable crook. You get irritated with him but you understand where he comes from.

What I didn’t like was that while Karan’s anger is explained, I would have liked a little more background story on Sonia. Also the story could have done with a little bit of settling down. The ending felt a little bit rushed and abrupt.

All in all a good book, a quick exciting read. It is definitely worth picking up a copy for yourself.


Karan Pratap Singh is on the brink of winning the Amateur Boxing Championship, when in a moment, he loses it all. His fall from glory seems fuelled by ruthless arrogance and an out-of-control anger management problem. That, however is just symptomatic of a deeper issue. Buried under layers of his fractured subconscious lies a childhood secret he cannot come to terms with.

Sonia Kapoor is a beautiful, volatile young woman with a secret that torments her at night but a secret that she feels no guilt for.

When fate throws Karan and Sonia together in Mumbai, their personal demons and pasts collide and stir up trouble in their fragile and uncertain present. But, is redemption possible without forgiveness?

Dancing with Demons is a fast-paced action drama of love, loss and resurrection.

Disclaimer: I received this book in PDF form from The Book Club in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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