Jul 6, 2014

Temple of Avinasi

First for the confessions…
  • I had not heard or seen the novel till my best friend posted a review
  • The only reason why I wanted to read the novel, was because my best friend posted a review
  • I am not a devout Hindu who believes in the legends of the Dashavtar…though I enjoy reading about them and ‘have’ read extensively about them
  • Krishna is my ‘absolute’ favorite mytho character…for like EVER
  • When I saw the author bio, I seriously doubted if he could actually ‘write’… although, I should know appearances can be deceiving... I'm ashamed of my preconceptions

Now to the review…

Its not the first time someone has used Kalki and legends in a fictional setting. Recently Ashwin Sanghi used the legend in his Krishna Key… (which by the way a novel I enjoyed, find my review here). But the way Ayush has treated it, is completely different. This one as a delightful change of tune, has all elements of a Hollywood Superhero Flick…. Secret society, Good vs. Evil, Magical Weapons, Immortals and Epic battles interspersed with controversies and mysteries and intrigues… and to add the luster, backdrop of Hindu Mythology. I always wonder why not many people use Mytho as a backdrop for stories. Hindu Mythology and epics are so full of characters and obscure offshoots of stories that if an author decides to write about a character a day, he/she might write for years together without repeating a single thread.
Well, let’s get back to the review. Like I mentioned earlier, this novel has all the things a good sci-fi or superhero flick would need. It’s a novel for modern Indian who is flexible to view and review the legends and is open to a little liberty with the traditional story lines. It offers a possibility at viewing at the images of Gods and legends in a new light. If you don’t feel offended while watching “Ancient Aliens” on History TV… I think you will find this to be palatable. But if you are amongst those devout people who equate gods to be above and beyond humans… you might just not like what the book presents.

I liked the idea of Gods being Immortal till killed/murdered/assassinated. I could relate to a secret society living in a parallel dimension so as to protect us, mere mortals from innumerable perils the outer world offers. I was fascinated by the idea that a dimensional shield protects us. If I was inclined to… it would have made me feel safe in the hands of the creator J the book would find ideal reader in the audiences of The Mummy trilogy if I may guess.

Now, if I have to stop being enamored by the novelty of the book and start reviewing… here’s an unbiased view of looking at this novel.

It’s a very well used and worn story about a young boy who finds himself in a situation that he never would have imagined in his wildest dreams. He has fame and a prophecy that dictates his life, changes his life in an instant. He is thrown into an arena that changes his view…about life, about world in general and about people he thought he knew and understood. There is a villain and by the end of the novel, your perception about the world villain are changed such that nothing really fits in the traditional forms. There is a battle, in traditional terms with weapons of mass destruction and in modern terms where the opponents are both in your head… turmoil and torture… in a traditional review route… this novel  offers nothing new in terms of storyline. In the genre that this falls in… there is nothing to compare this one to.

So… what’s the verdict?

Verdict is that I liked it. I hope pardoning me for my initial reaction, Mr. Pathak continues to write, and completes the series that he promises us at the end of this one… and he delivers the next one with same or even more oomph than he wrote this one with. So, if you liked reading Percy or if you enjoy watching Ancient Aliens without getting offended… this one is a read you will thoroughly enjoy. Go for it.

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