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Posts Tagged ‘Puranas’


The Song Seekers
Saswati Sengupta| Zubaan| Rs 395

In one of the most venerated texts on Goddess Kali, the Mahatmya, Kali also known as Chandi, is a fierce sword-wielding goddess. In the 18th century Puranic retelling of the tale, however, Kali as consort of Shiva assumes more importance. She becomes the goddess Parvati that’s tied to home and hearth, not the battlefield. Sengupta questions this twisting of the tale by the patriarchs who penned the Chandimangals in 18th century Bengal. “How did these contradictions come about?” she asks, as she spins an alternate tale. Fascinating read, if you can get over the un-evenness of the author’s narrative as it flits clumsily between past and present.

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The Grandeur of the Lion
Carl Muller| Penguin|Rs 199

Muller, now 77-years-old, has been a navy signalman, a tourist entertainer and a writer of science fiction and poetry. The ‘Lion series’ is his attempt to retell the saga of Sinhalese people through Buddhist fables and mythology. More accurately, he tells the story of the reign of Duttha Gamini – known both as a destructive and benevolent king – who ruled the kingdom of Anuradhapuram on the island between 161-137 BC. The first book in the series, City of the Lion earned him the State Literary Award in Sri Lanka. This book is the third in the four part series, describing how Duttha Gamini transformed his capital into the most famous Buddhist city in ancient times.

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I Have Got Your Number
Sophie Kinsella| Banta Press|Rs 550

Kinsella shot to fame with her first bestselling novel, Confessions of a Shopaholic that was later turned into an equally popular Hollywood flick. In I Have Got Your Number the author explores the travails of a heroine who while losing her own phone finds a mobile belonging to a dashing businessman. The romance formula does not change. What changes is the setting. The hero is a tall, dark and handsome man and the woman, a physiotherapist in a recuperation facility. The heroine has no calms about accessing the hero’s official and personal emails and sms texts. In real life she would have got the boot, in the novel, she gets the man.

(An edited version of the above reviews appeared in the Sunday edition of the Mail Today, New Delhi, dated 4 March 2012)

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