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Book Review: Samsaara (Devadoot) by Alkesh Nair

Samsaara (Devadoot) is a very likeable novel for its innovative approach, well-fitted in a fantasy form. The story revolves around the lead character Rishaan Kel from Mumbai. One fine day as he was passing through a temple, he stumbles upon a beautiful girl, but out of nowhere she disappears in the air. He is befuddled, but she leaves an enigmatic hairpin for him, probably made of gold. Here onwards the restlessness of Rishaan kicks off and the story in the novel gets altogether on a new venue.


From the initial chapters, I thought it as a simple investigative cum spy story. Well, it has more than that. If you have had read Harry Potter series, well then you have no time adapting to this riveting novel. Since the most of the events are spiraled out of sheer imagination, the kind of fantasy world with amusing aspects one finds is literally mind-boggling.

Taking ahead the main story, Rishaan Kel is initially obsessed with a career in a detective field. However, little did he know that he has gotten over the some really incredible powers via that hairpin? He tries to understand it, while the process takes him to far-off lands and at various circumstances. The hairpin gives him three incredible powers; one such is teleportation to another world or time. What are the rest two? You must grab the novel to know the same.

Like most of the fantasy novels, this too takes us to a fight that is between dark and good forces. For this, we have the Guardians and the Watchers. What was their connection and why are they fighting? And how Rishaan Kel got entwined among them, fills the rest of the narration. The way story throws unexpected twists and turns at each juncture is worth praise and not for a moment you will feel that the story is going to be stagnant. Different landscapes, monsters, forces, pesky villains – all blended in such an engrossing way that you may not feel like giving up the book. The novel is exceptionally high on suspense.

I think this is the first part in the Samsaara series. More fun to come. For fantasy and thriller readers, this novel is an impressive work. They are going to keep it fresh in their cask of subconscious for a long time. Writing, pace, narration is super fantastic, and most important is the wit factor – it keeps the story charming and relevant.

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