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Monday, November 28, 2016

The Guardians Of Halahala - Shatrujeet Nath - Book Review

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Title: The Vikramaditya Trilogy:
Book 1 - The Guardians of the Halahala
Authors: Shatrujeet Nath
Publication Year: 2014
Language: English
Binding: Paperback
Genre: Fiction, Historical, Alternative History
No. of Pages: 428
Price: Rs 350
My Rating: 4.5/5

About the Author
Shatrujeet Nath has sold ice creams, peddled computer training courses, written ad copy and reported on business as a journalist and assistant editor at The Economic Times. His first book, The Karachi Deception, was published in 2013. He divides his time between writing fiction and poetry, reading, playing with his daughter, and dreaming of buying a small castle in Scotland. Till that happens, he plans to continue living in Mumbai.

Mythology and History is loved by all. We have grown up listening to stories about our heroes, of grandeur, of demigods, Asuras, Gods, wars, palaces, princesses, magic and much more all through our childhood. I Sure am a fan of this genre.
So when I get my hands on such a book which weaves spell through all these ancient fictions, magic, power, love, Gods, humans and more I just chance on the opportunity.
Retelling stories, Filming old folk lore's, history and mythology with liberties are trending now a days and everyone loves a good story.
The Guardians Of Halahala is just that written by Shatrujeet Nath its the first book in the series of Vikramaditya Veergatha and it sure makes an impact. This book right from its cover is captivating.
The cover depicts the action, storm raging within as well as all over. The mighty Vikramaditya amidst everything standing tall with fearless stride and his hell fire swords in hands is like the entire book summarised in one picture.
As soon as you open the book, an ancient kingdom map draws you in and just after you manage to read it you are taken by the glossary of names of characters from every kingdom with their short description.
The plot is laid and you are already in it, anticipation riding high all excited ready to lose yourself in the book and find new characters. No sooner than I started reading I couldn't stop, the narration is fast, captivating and the author builds suspense and entails you in it.
I found myself also wondering on the lines of Game Of Thrones (cant help, serious fan ) but the book does that to you.
The story is set in the middle of many kingdoms and all stories or happening are interwoven in one big plot. Be it the kings, their alliance, kingdoms, wars, devas, asura, enemies, relationships, loyalty, love, plotting, ghouls, magic and more - the crux the finality of it all is but one and that is power - supreme power.
Remember this book is not facts but fiction taking in from mythological stories and all the important characters and traits, happenings that we know of.
So the story revolves round Halahala - the poison that Lord Shiva consumed which made him blue in order to save the world from annihilation. So in this book a small portion of this poison - Halahala was stolen by a demon Veeshada and stored in his dagger.
Now after ages Lord Shiva himself entrusts the responsibility of this Veeshadas dagger to King Vikramaditya to keep it safe from the demons, the Gods and any other entity to safeguard the balance of power in the universe.
What follows is assaults on Vikramaditya's Kingdom from the Gods as well as Demons led by Indra and Shukracharya respectively in every form to attain the Halahala and achieve supremacy. On the other hand the book even follows the threats from Huna and Saka tribes, the disturbance of equilibrium in the Kingdoms. The ailing wife of Vikramaditya whom he loves dearly and can do anything for her but will he pay the price for her well being and in what way. Will she ever wake up from her deep slumber and recognise and love the king ever again.
The book revolves round the mighty Vikramaditya and his council of 9 and how they deal with this mayhem and emerge victorious on all accounts or not and at what price. The characters that the author has played with right from Betaal to the devas and asuras makes me want to get myself other books on them and relive these old characters and their stories (growing up on Vikram and Betaal series and tv serial too - what do you expect).
This is one of the good traits of a successful book - makes you want to read more and more about it and the characters involved in it.
The book ends on one of the battles- with lots of questions to be answered in the second part - The conspiracy at Meru.
Why and how did the Maruts disappear? What happened to Vishakha ? What will be the next step? What about Huna and Saka attack ? What price will this war incur? So many question - 2 more books.
I can hardly wait.
The book is a perfection in every way the author has been successful in involving, sketching and bringing to life so many characters with in depth research visible. There are no lose plots. The stories are interwoven beautifully. The author leaves you wanting for more with his immaculate descriptions of every scene. The grandeur, the seriousness, love, the war fare, mayhem, loyalty- every relationship is felt by the reader and every scene depicted and imagined to the hilt - such is the writing.
Must Read - Amazing book.

I was sent this personally signed book from the aurhor himself to review it however the views are completely mine and in no way influenced.
You can buy the book on Amazon for Rs 298 over here.

Check out the book review vlog 

Thanks To Jaico Books and the Author himself Shatrujeeth Nath enjoyed the book completely.
Cant wait to read The Conspiracy at Meru.

Until we meet again.
Happy Reading!


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