Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Book Review: Ramayana - The Game of Life - Shattered Dreams

This book is the second part in the Ramayana - The Game of Life series by Shubha Vilas. The timeline is set twelve years after Ram's marriage to Sita. The author has drawn influence from the writings of Valmiki and Tulsidas, and attributes his interest in this epic mythological drama to the daily storytelling session by his grandmother. The book begins with Rama's coronation as the king of Ayodhya, followed by Manthara's sinister scheme to crown Bharatha and send Rama to exile, which leads to the death of a heartbroken Dasaratha, and ends with the trio of Rama, Sita, and Lakshmana's departure towards the Dandakarnaya forest. 

High points:

1. The narration is gripping, it kept me hooked to the book with its interesting storyline. I was intrigued by the author's method of looking into the soul of the character and writing out his deepest, innermost feelings. 
2. Each page is filed with vivid description of the scene and the characters. Its like the scene is coming to life in front of your eyes. Its a reader's delight when one gets to read such a visually enriching scene.
3. There is a detailed character sketch for the characters who drive the story forward. I could feel Dasaratha's fear as he was tormented each night by the recurring nightmares, and also his relief when the subjects at the royal court accepted Rama as his successor. 
4. Presence of footnotes. This book is not only a retelling of an epic, but also aims to motivate the reader and help him in his spiritual journey as he embarks on this reading trip. It would not have been easy, if not for the presence of footnotes at the end of each page which offers a simple but detailed explanation for the section referenced.

Low points:

1. Since the book is part of a series, it is best if one has read the first book in the series Ramayana - The Game of Life - Rise of the Sun Prince. 

2. In certain sections, the narration loses its pace and there is an excess of detail which makes it a slow read. But then again good things come to those who wait, so patience is a quality that comes in handy when reading this book.

Final verdict: The Ramayana - The Game of Life - Shattered Dreams (Book 2) is an interesting read for anyone who is looking out for understanding the wisdom concealed within the stories of the epic, Valmiki's Ramayana. It provides a deep insight into the characters mind and also does a brilliant job in recreating the scene in the reader's mind. Since I havenot read the first part of this book series, I would recommend that one should read the Ramayana - The Game of Life - Rise of the Sun Prince (Book 1) first to gain a better understanding of the story and its memorable characters.

This post is a part of Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda. Participate now to get free books!

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