Book Review: The Immortals of Meluha by Amish Tripathi


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The Immortals of Meluha

Author: Amish Tripathi
ISBN: 9788183860697
Buy: On Flipkart




The Immortals of Meluha is a retelling of a Hindu mythology – of a character who definitely grabs people’s imagination – Shiva. Shiva the destroyer, the dancer, marijuana smoker whose abode is Mount Kailash. What if he was not a God, but a Tibetan immigrant whose destiny takes him on a long journey? Interesting premise.

And the story did turn out to be a very interesting read. The author takes bits and pieces of knowledge that we have of the Indus Valley civilization, the Ramayana etc. and gives it some reality-based/modern explanation. He has also used some of the research on Shiva and his historical development as a God.

What is most commonly known about Shiva is that he is one of the gods of the the Hindu trinity – the destroyer of evil and protector of the innocent. He is also known to be an excellent dancer and feared to be able to destroy the world if he opens his third eye. Well-known mythology, by itself, makes Shiva a very interesting character indeed. Amish has taken it a lot further in this first book of Shiva Trilogy – The Immortals of Meluha.

The well-laid out cities, the order, governance, attention to hygiene are all aspects that we remember from History textbooks when studying about Mohenjo-daro and Harappa. The romance, the magic, the enmity between the two cultures and Shiva’s role in this reality is Amish's wonderful exercise in imagination.

I have to say though that this is not one of the better written books I have read. There are many bad choices in the usage of words, some awkward constructions. Even the plot dragged a little in places. The language did hinder the flow of the narrative. The modern jargon, terminology and cuss words are also not the best choice in a story that is based in this ancient magical time. The author would have done well to create a language for the people just like he created their socio-cultural outline.

Synopsis: The Suryavanshis and Chandravanshis are sworn enemies whose rivalry goes back through generations. The Suryavanshis are the proud descendants of Lord Rama and believe in order, while the Chandravanshis are believers in freedom of the individual. Their cultural differences and twisted recalling of their history have made bitter enemies of these two kingdoms. Enter Shiva, Neelkanth the saviour. Legend has it that Neelkanth will appear at a time when he is most needed and fight for good and put an end to evil. “When evil reaches epic proportions, when all seems lost, when it appears that your enemies have triumphed, a hero will emerge.” But even for a Mahadev, a saviour, the choices are never simple.

Debut author Amish Tripathi’s first book in the Shiva TrilogyThe Immortals of Meluha gets a thumbs up from me. Stories of superhuman heroes arguing about dharma, epics like Mahabharata and Ramayana and tales of devas and asuras are always interesting. Great read for anyone who loves mythology and knows something of Indian mythology. For those who don't know much Indian mythology, this gives enough clues and starting points that you'll want to follow up on to start learning about it.

Not convinced? Check out The Immortals of Meluha trailer and see if you change your mind. The second and third books (The Secret of the Nagas and The Oath of the Vayuputras) are expected to follow – no dates yet. You can also check the official website of the Shiva Trilogy for updates and more.



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1 comments:

mumbaimidlife said...

Hi,

I liked your blog. I thought that we could do a few cross blog things.

Would you be interested in reviewing my new book "Love, Peace and Happiness:What more can you want?"

I could do an author interview on yours. I could also post your review on my fanpage referenced below which has more than 10,000 fans giving you a whole new set of visitors.

Let me know if this makes sense for your blog.

Rituraj Verma, author
www.facebook.com/BookLPH
www.riturajverma.com/blog
email:riturajverma2005@gmail.com

August 22, 2012 at 8:37 AM

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