Author : Sana Chawla
Publisher : Self Published
Genre : Self Help, Motivational
Source : Author
Rating : 2/5 Stars
Today I have an interview with an author whose newest book, Harilal And Sons, will be gracing Indian and International shelves soon. A story that goes from Shekhavati in Rajasthan to the Calcutta of the early twentieth century, to Bogra in East Bengal, and to a village in Bihar in newly independent India and ultimately awes you in its magnitude. The author himself has conducted research for NASA, taught at IIT and worked as a space scientist in California. And when he isn’t doing all these things, he runs Naatak, an Indian theatre company in America for which he writes and directs plays and films.
The Peshwa is another story about the brave and skilled Peshwa, Bajirao. He is said to have been praised as one of the greatest cavalry generals India has produced by an English General and while he is known for his expansion of the Maratha reign to the north, he is even more known for his love affair with the famous (or infamous) Masthani. Continue reading
Abhaya is another book to make its way into the ever popular Indian Mythology scene. It follows a girl, Abhaya, who is the princess of a smaller kingdom. She is assertive and stubborn with her principles in place, not to mention she is a fun character to read about. Naturally a girl who is assertive and strong will rub some people the wrong way and she does rub one someone the wrong way and relationships that were already fraying completely unravel.
I shall not pretend to be a mythology expert; in fact I shall not even say I know much about mythology except that which my grandparents told me. So it was a little hard for me to associate this with any particular legend but based on the blurb it seems to be about Narakasura. It is about the overthrowing of a cult with the help of Lord Krishna and saving the lives of the women who have been trapped by the leader.
03:02 is a book that I very high expectations for. When I started reading it my expectations dropped a tiny bit, but only a tiny bit. I still had high expectations for it. Which is why, I have to say, I’m sorely disappointed.
1. You went with a mythology theme but instead of writing mythology you wrote a retelling that everyone could relate to. That’s a little different for the current atmosphere here. What made you do it?
I was quite certain that I did not want to simply retell a story from a different point of view. One of the ideas behind writing the book was to reexamine our epics with respect to their continued effect on our contemporary sensibilities and relationships. More than anything else, I wanted this book to ask questions, not to provide answers. Does devotion towards a brother justify the desertion of a wife? At what point does filial love turn into an unhealthy attachment? How much of a relationship is actually only an imagined reality? There are no fixed answers; hopefully each reader will arrive at his/her truth.
Did you know that in certain communities in India a girl has to change her name after marriage? No, not her last name, her first name too. So if her name is Urmila she might have to change it to Savitri. Because her new name has to be lucky for her husband. I’m all for tradition but this is just depressing. Pervin Saket’s book, Urmila, is based on characters from one of these communities and explores what it is to be a wife in such a place. It is also based on the story of Urmila, Lakshman’s wife. (If you don’t know who Lakshmanan is, he is Ramar’s younger brother who willingly went into exile with him and his wife, Goddess Sita, leaving his wife Urmila behind to tend to his ageing parents.)
No book talks about Urmila, the same way no one talks about Karna’s wives. They are pushed to the side lines, like a long suffering background character in films that no one mention after the beginning. But these are the characters that allowed the story to be told, that allow the protagonists their chance at glory and in my opinion, are the hidden heroes of the story.