Skip to main content

Book Review: The Epic of Kautilya (Born to be King) by Deepak Thomas

Fantasy fictions are charming than other genres as there you find normal things done in different ways. For instance, the background is, most of the time, is not contemporary – it is mix of myth and history and some other innovative landscapes. Next, the host of characters, unlike human, you are sure to meet demons, monsters, animals, and apes for that matter. If you have read ‘Hobbit’ and ‘The Lord of the Rings’ series, we hope you understand what we are alluding to. Coming to this novel, which stretches up to 288 pages, we felt while reading as we are with this novel and its characters and in the setting since ages. The experience was dreamlike. And when the novel ended, you feel good for the experience, and sad as you have to move on. But the hope of getting a possible sequel keeps you alive.

This novel possesses a very fantastic yet intriguing question – which is mightier to rule a kingdom, ink and intellectual or steel and strength? The protagonist, female Kautilya, so called princess of the Bharata Kingdom, is of the opinion of that a true and righteous king would focus more on ink and intellectual than war and its glory. However, her brother Dhanush is just anti-thesis to her beliefs, and feels otherwise. Who’s going to win, later on, the war between them is about their conflicting beliefs. So, who is right, who is unjust…only time and mettle of the characters will tell.

The story begins with Chandra – a well-known pacifist king of the kingdom Bharata. He has immense glory and good points to his name; however an heir to the throne is awaiting a quirk of fate for him. People suggested him to marry other women for sons, but he refuses to do as he was in true love with his wife. To change the course of destiny, he undertakes a journey along with his wife to the Himalayas –which is full of pain and suffering. He gets the boon of having children; however his wife dies before reaching the palace. He gets six children through sacrificing birds, out of which five are boys (known as raptors), and one girl named Kautilya, born out of a parrot. 

Soon, the children are sent away to get education. Among them Dhanunsh, as people believe, is said to be a born warrior, and he intends to be the heir of the kingdom. However, the king Chandra disapproves his stance. Well, when Kautilya’s marriage is arranged, Dhanush and other brothers kill the king openly on a false pretense. This shock backseats her and she longs to revenge his murder. However, Dhanush becomes cruel with his intentions and imprisons her. From here onwards, the novel takes unprecedented turn and things become worse for Kautilya and her hope to avenge the killers of her father sees new change of course. Rest of the narration is about as how she rises from there, what all she does to regain her kingdom as well to defeat her enemies, and who all support her. This is an interesting saga of a girl who not only chooses to avenge the murder of her father but also teaches apes of the Dandaka forest to snatch their liberty from the humans.

There is a lot to enjoy from the story…in the love and betrayal stance we see Kautilya’ affair with Jay, the son of a General, and then with a demon called Adi. Kautilya being a human joins the group of apes, who are desperate to gain freedom from humans. Though she struggles to get along with it, but there is a mystery as why is she with them. Kautilya was always good at sketching out strategies and was known for having good knowledge about astras. So, in the end, she uses her mind and war-strategies to get apes their deserved freedom. However, it comes at a price...what’s that? A novel full of adventure and suspense at every aspect is sure to delight your hearts.

After the end, in the epilogue we see the scope of sequel, as it is mentions Lanka and someone from there is looking for someone who must have played big role in this saga.

The author must have done immense research to turn it into a final product. Writing and narration and dialogues among characters are all superbly delivered. Well-written and well-edited, this novel of Deepak Thomas deserves to be counted among the best fantasy fiction ever written by Indian authors.


Popular posts from this blog

Book Review: The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond

Among all Ruskin Bond books, The Blue Umbrella has, so far, gathered immense applaud from readers and critics alike.  This is a short novel, but the kind of moral lessons it teaches to us are simply overwhelming.

This is a story of Binya, a poor little girl living with her mother and an elder brother, Bijju, in a small hilly village of Garhwal. One day while herding her two cows back home, she stumbles upon some city people enjoying the picnic in the valley. She is enthralled to see them well-groomed and rich. She craves to be one like them and among many other things of their, a blue frilly umbrella catches her attention. She begins craving for it. On the other hand, the city people get attracted by her innocent beauty and the pendant in her neck. The pendant consists of leopard’s claw – which is considered a mascot widely in the hills. Binya trades her pendant off with the blue umbrella.

The blue umbrella is so much beautiful that soon it becomes a topic of conversation for village…

Book Review: A Village in Garhwal by Ruskin Bond

There is no one better than Ruskin Bond to give you deep insights about the life in the Himalayan foothills. He lives in Mussoorie and thus knows the up and down of the hills, nearby and the farthest. You must have read many Ruskin Bond stories on the lives and culture of the Himalayan people living in Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. Well, this short story, A Village in Garhwal, takes you into Manjari village of Garhwal region. The author spends four days in the village, he was taken there by one of his friends Gajadhar. This village Manjari is located twenty-five miles away from Lansdown, a famous tourist place and center of Garhwal Rifles.

It takes two days to reach this village from the author’s native place. One needs to travel first by bus from Lansdown and then walk for five miles. The village is situated up the Nayar River – a tributary of the Ganges. One morning the author wakes up to the loud vociferous sound of Cicada. This sound reminds him of factory buzzer. The author …

Book Review: The Cherry Tree by Ruskin Bond

The Cherry Tree by Ruskin Bond is a very nice story promoting the importance of nature through a cute boy Rakesh, aged six. Rakesh lives with his grandfather in a small town of Mussoorie, and there he goes to school every day. For the farming purpose, his parents live in the deeper part of the mountains which is not connected with facilities like school or hospitals, etc.

One day Rakesh buys a bunch of cherries from the market, while eating them, he comes home. When he is left with only three cherries, he thinks about sowing seeds of cherries around his home, since there is barely a fruit tree. In the garden around his home, he throws the seed casually. After rain and winter when the next season of monsoon arrives, by luck he notices the tiny plant of the cherry tree. Thereafter, he grows fond of that tree; however, he remains obsessed with its height. He wants it to grow very fast. When he sees that the tree is not growing fast like he thought, he abandons it, thinking it a waste of…