Friday, 27 February 2015

The Oath of the Vayuputras (Shiva Trilogy #3) - Amish Tripathi


Shiva is gathering his forces. He reaches the Naga capital, Panchavati, and Evil is finally revealed. The Neelkanth prepares for a holy war against his true enemy, a man whose name instils dread in the fiercest of warriors. 

India convulses under the onslaught of a series of brutal battles. It's a war for the very soul of the nation. Many will die. But Shiva must not fail, no matter what the cost. In his desperation, he reaches out to the ones who have never offered any help to him: the Vayuputras. 

Will he succeed? And what will be the real cost of battling Evil? To India? And to Shiva's soul? 

Discover the answer to these mysteries in this concluding part of the bestselling Shiva Trilogy.


Amish Tripathi

          Simply failed to meet the expectations. I had huge expectations on Amish after his first two books. He seemed to be living up to his reputation till the final 50 pages of the book.. The author completely lost the plot in the final pages. It was as if he didn't know how to finish the plot and resorted to finishing it in a vague manner. But I take nothing away from the book. the first three-fourth of the book was simply outstanding. The war strategies, Shiva's visit to various lands and his gathering of forces, the revealing of true evil were all worth praising.
      The usual pattern accompanying trilogies is that the first book is a killer, the second book - a plot developer and the final one builds the plot to a crescendo before reaching an apt climax. This trilogy too follows a similar pattern but for the final 10%. Shiva is portrayed as an ideal character throughout the series and his virtues are worth following. What I really loved about this series was the fact that Lord Shiva was shown as an ordinary human being who has his own flaws and occasional mood swings. He is portrayed in flesh and blood, vulnerable and yet eerily strong. I absolutely fell in love with the character.
          The next character Sati - a perfect partner for the all conquering Shiva. She is a rare combination of beauty, intelligence and bravery and her romance with her better half is mesmerising. Again, making her human only serves to make the character more interesting and lively. (Spoiler alert!)The heartbreak at the end is not for the weak-hearted! All other characters like Parvateshwar, Nandi, Anandmayi were beautifully brought out and I must say I have developed immense respect for the author. If only he had come up with a better ending, sigh! I especially loved the philosophical parts where Shiva is enlightened about what is evil and the role of the Somras. Also, the part where Shiva's rage comes forth and conquers everyone on it's path gave me goosebumps.

Overall enjoyed the book but for the final few pages. A must-read!

Rating: 3.7/5

Find my review for the first two books of the series here!

Buy the books here!

Check out news about Amish's next book here.

Sunday, 8 February 2015

The World of Nagaraj - R.K.Narayan


       Nagaraj's world is quite and comfortable. Living in his family's spacious house with only his wife Sita for company, he fills his day writing letters, drinking coffee, doing some leisurely book keeping for his friend Coomar's Boeing Sari Company, and sitting on his veranda watching the world and planning the book he intends to write about the life of the great sage Narada. But everything is disturbed when Tim, the son of his ambitious landowing brother Gopu, decides to leave home and come to live with Nagaraj. Forced to take responsibility for the boy, puzzled by his secret late-night activities and by the strong smell of sprits which lingers behind him, Nagaraj finds his days, suddenly filled with unwelcome complication and turbulence, which threaten to alter for ever the contented tranquility of his world. The latest of R.K.Narayan's magnificent Malgudi books, The World of Nagaraj is beautifully written, funny and haunting , evoking in marvelously rich detail the atmosphere of a small town in southern India and creating a magical world into which the reader is instantly drawn.



       This is my first R.K.Narayan book and I must say I'm pleased with the book. Though some online browsing suggested me that this is not the best book by RKN, I personally loved the book for its simplicity and brilliant portrayal.

          I've personally heard and read a lot about the mystical town, Malgudi but this is the first time I'm experiencing the town through the author's words. I'm from south India and I must say it was refreshing to see a great author's take on my part of the country. Yes, Malgudi was brilliantly portrayed and I loved every street, every shop and every corner of the ethereal city.

          The World of Nagaraj is about an honest and simple man named Nagaraj  who has inherited a huge sum of money that allows him to spend his life in silent contemplations and thoughts. He thinks he is a man with a mission but doesn't know clearly what his mission is. He has a silent and peaceful life with his wife Sita who is shown to be a caring and affectionate spouse. RKN reveals through a series of flashbacks the characters of Nagaraj's mother, his brother and his sister-in-law. His brother, a dominat and self-imposing elder brother had wanted the farmhouse after their father's death and that was well for Nagaraj who wanted the Malgudi house for himself. All was well in Nagaraj's life until his brother's son, Tim enters his life.

          From the start, Tim had mysterious ways and was unpredictable. Nagaraj never had the nerve to ask Tim what he was up to. Tim eventually married and his wife Saroja only added to Nagaraj's woes by playing her harmonium which got on Nagaraj's nerves. Throughout all these incidents, Nagaraj had the mind to stand up for himself or to defend his rights. His is a typical soft character who lets others rule his mood. Thus, Nagaraj's mission of writing about the great sage Narada could never be realised.
Since this is my first RKN novel, I can;t compare it with his previous works but it was a good and enjoyable read with a good dose of humour thrown in.

Rating: 2.8/5

Buy the book online here:

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