I was in high school when I first laid my hands on the first book of the series. I was a little hesitant to read this book. For starters, the book had a narrative of a twelve-year-old boy who suffered from ADHD and was a Greek demigod of all things! I decided we had nothing in common at all.
The princess of Panchal has a very unique story of birth. King Draupad wanted a son to defeat Dronacharya and hence was trying, by all means, to get one. No one knew that along with a son, a daughter will also be born. As Draupadi emerged from the sacrificial fire, a heavenly voice announced that this girl will change the course of Bharat (modern-day India) in the future.
As an ardent reader, I have always wondered how a myth from one culture connects with one from a totally different one. Perhaps, it may be because each myth and legend has passed down mouth to mouth for several generations, making them universal. Mythologies trump authorship. They are not limited to a particular culture or era. Myths encapsulate the unspoken truth of society and culture.
In the epic, there are oodles of miraculous narratives revolving around the birth of Karna that leave us spellbound. Every birth in this universe is guided by inexplicable cosmic forces without an ounce of human interference. These cosmic forces carry the weight that decides the fate of every child. Without any known merits, some of us get access to a plethora of privileges right from birth whereas some of us struggle for even the basic necessities.
One often wonders what happens after we die: do we really walk into the afterlife? The answer of whether our journey ends at our funeral or whether we begin a new journey the day after our funeral is an endless one. Nikhil Kushwaha presents us with a vision of the afterlife in his book “The Day After My Funeral”. He neither intends to question any religious beliefs nor desires to preach. He simply wants to bring awareness to readers of the ticking clock – so that we live our life to the fullest, enjoy every moment and die in peace without any regrets.
I’ve always wondered how our lives would be affected if the mythical creatures existed for real and did not live just in books. How different our lives could be if that were to be true? Maybe, instead of boarding the bus to go to school every day, I could ride my own dragon and have my own fairy-godmother – like Cinderella. I would get to slay the trolls and swim with my mermaid friends. I could keep a phoenix as a pet and have wonderful house-elves at my disposal.
Tosca Lee’s attempt in extracting the hidden events and feelings from within the first few chapters of the Book of Genesis is a brilliant depiction of how our mind manages to convince us to blame someone for all that happens – whether that someone be you or anyone else. She tries to fill the gaps and find the answers for the questions that come into being about the story of the first man and woman according to The Bible, and in the process brings about the birth of a beautiful read, Havah: The Story of Eve.
I stare out at the storm that’s brewing in front of me and quickly make the assessment that this is not the time to go anywhere. I remember how I’d once read that before the time of Genghis Khan, the Mongols were afraid of thunder. I imagine how terrifying this spellbinding sight must have been for agricultural societies. And yet – rain was a blessing. Without water, crops would never grow.
Morgan le Fay is a famous and powerful enchantress that appears in Arthurian legends as a worthy friend-turned foe, or to be more precise, a half-sister who plots against the King for his throne. As time passed by and King Arthur and his tales became more and more iconic, what started as the character of a fairy, who is confident of her own powers and uses it for the benefit of her people transformed into a dark and ruthless sorceress who stops at nothing to get what she wants.
With her very colourful and engaging characters, Sanatani manages to create strong imagery in our heads which readers can relate to their own lives on earth. What is amazing about the narrative style is the human-like conversations between different Celestial Beings that makes it easy for the readers to quickly grasp the storyline.