15
Oct

Unmasking The Truths

Review of The Secret Of The Nagas; Amish Tripathi; Westland 2011; pp 396; Rs 295

– Shana Susan Ninan

Proceeding from where Amish Tripathi’s first book in the Shiva Trilogy, The Immortals Of Meluha paused, the chase continues in his The Secret Of The Nagas. The Naga who was responsible for the death of Shiva’s close friend Brahaspati, and who now follows Sati, doesn’t seem to give up. He does not kill Shiva or Sati when he gets the chance, but leaves them slightly wounded.

The couple plans to find the Naga, among trying to uncover many other mysteries. The Nagas’ capital across the Dandakaranya forests, Pachavati, is a guarded city, the location of which is unknown to the Suryavanshis and Chandravanshis. But Shiva has to reach there – to his aid comes Parashuram, one of the many new characters in the sequel.

Sati, too, is faced with many problems, the most painful of which is something that she cannot handle. The Mahadev is always by her side, not overbearing but just there. The two of them see how Kings and rulers change sides, attack innocents, plot and manipulate various events. Even Sati’s father, Daksha, is not too far behind in conspiracies.

The Vasudevs continue to meet and converse with Shiva, and also helps him discover truths about himself, though there is a good lot of unanswered questions in the Mahadev’s mind. The character of Shiva, I thought, reduced delivering his usually witty dialogues and also in spontaneity. But then again, as the pages were flipped and the plot slowly unraveled, it dawned upon me that the Shiva in the second book has grown up – yes, not just literally. He was an expectant father now, not to mention the responsibilities laid on his shoulders. He has a lot to find out and not much time to do so.

The book cover’s matt finish snake wound around Shiva’s left wrist and forearm, which was not so noticeable on the Facebook photo and other pictures  of it, was the first thing that struck me when I picked it up at a book store. A small idea perhaps, but I’m sure it has made a big impact on the novel’s outlook, especially so because of the Naga’s continued reference and depiction in the story.

It’s very rare to see an Indian author who’s penned a sequel successfully. A comparison of the sequels merits no mention here. Each book has an individuality that must be treated so. The Secret Of The Nagas stops at an equally enticing situation and person as the earlier novel does. Waiting for The Oath of The Vayuputras. Amish, write on!

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Rating: 7.8/10 (9 votes cast)
Unmasking The Truths, 7.8 out of 10 based on 9 ratings

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This entry was posted on Saturday, October 15th, 2011 at 11:42 pm and is filed under Mythological Fiction, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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