In A Secret History of Compassion , the author trades simplicity for a supremely complex narrative to tell the story of Lord Spider, a renowned 40-something author of 131 mysteries, thrillers and romances, and his grand project of writing an essay on compassion for the Communist Party. In that mission, Spider meets an executioner and a man of perverse imagination, J.L. Pillai (the J in his initials stands for his father Jesus), and Rosi, his wife, whom he calls a philosopher of some repute. Obviously, it is not the project but the process that hooks the reader, who is taken on a literary roller-coaster ride.
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