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Har Har Mahadev!

I have never hesitated picking a book by a lesser known author. In fact, in all my library visits in Singapore, I have picked books by authors I have never read before just based on the blurb I read at the end of the book. Some of the books turn out to be pleasant surprises and some not so. But when buying books I have always tried to use sound judgement- either bought books by known authors or best sellers.

I learnt of Amish Tripathi’s books in early 2011 when he released his second book of the Shiva Trilogy. I was in fact in the bookstore browsing books the day Amish was to launch his second book at the same store. There was a sizeable crowd waiting to get signed copies of the second book. The hype did not excite me since I hadn’t read his first book nor any reviews of the book until then.

It took me much longer than that to actually want to read the book. When I heard some of my friends and associates talking about his books and buying copies to read, I did not want to be left behind. By then I knew of the two books and how successful they had become. So I ordered my own copies from Flipkart. When they arrived, I flipped through a few pages of the first book and wondered if I had foolishly jumped on the bandwagon.

I got busy with other books I had borrowed from the library and kept Amish’s books back in the stack of books on my bookshelf. A whole 6 months passed before I made another attempt to read the Shiva Trilogy. This time around I took just that one book when I travelled, so that I had no other option but to strive through even if I did not find it gripping.

The second attempt paid off.  I set a 50-pages-a-day reading limit and completed the 400 page book in 6 days- two days lesser than I predicted it would take. I had to read just beyond the first few chapters to begin enjoying the book. Amish has made Shiva so approachable and real life like. He curses, jokes, is earnest to learn and please.  I love the way he has used some facts from mythology and added believable content to make the mythology plausible. For someone who has no interest whatsoever in religion or philosophy, I have begun to admire Shiva.  When I read the book I was able to appreciate life the way it was in the time of Shri Ram and after him, Shiva. I would never have been able to remember names of Shiva’s able bodied friends and associates, if not for Amish’s picturization of them as mere mortal beings with the same needs and wants as us. I can tell you about Nandi, Veer Bhadra and Brahaspati now without having to philosophize.

It is possible that people who read the Shiva trilogy will look at Gods like Shiva with new perspective. The story makes you believe that there was a human like him that lived many thousand years ago who went on to become a God because of his deeds.  In that I think Amish has achieved something that no religious book would be able to.

I look forward to reading the second book of the Shiva Trilogy and will wait for the third and final book in March 2013. The last time I read all the books in a frenzy before the last one came out was JK Rowling’s Harry Potter series. There again I was the last adaptee!

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8 thoughts on “Har Har Mahadev!

  1. I loved the books. Never picked it up until after the second book came out but read it cover to cover and was left wanting the third one. Really love the style, the approach to the God as human et al. Waiting for the third book…..tick, tock….counting down now! 😀

    • Read it too Vidya. Even when you had posted it earlier. I have asked Akank to read it too since she seemed quite keen. Of late she has been reading teen romances and so I am not sure if she will like TIOM.

  2. I am a person who literally judge a book by it’s cover, because of my deep interest in enjoying book cover designs. I haven’t read his books yet, but I love the way the book covers were designed! Maybe you can lend them to me – for reading, that is! 😉

  3. I finally got to reading book 1 – sort of like Harry potter meets history and mythology
    The storyline was fine and infact exciting but am not too crazy about Amish’s writing. I do plan to read the next 2 books to finish up the trilogy for my book challenge

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