ENTERTAINMENT QUOTIENT: 4/5
Tarini needs a purpose in life. After losing her job, reputation and colleagues over a scam, the ambitious Tarini needs a challenge and a project to occupy her life.
Coincidentally, on a trip with her best friend, she meets A Man from Mandu and he becomes her product for wager as she starts to make a God-man out of him. But how far Tarini and the Man from Mandu, Dhawal will go to prove a point?
The book has a notable title as the story basically starts and is based around Dhawal, the A Man from Mandu. The blurb of the book reveals very little about the story within, just an inkling as to what is to be expected.
The cover art is as simple as the plotline and thus, emits the vibe of the book well.
At the same time, I do believe that the cover art could have been made a tad more appealing for the readers’ eyes. After all, the cover plays a key role in transmitting the message or the idea within a book while also attracting potential readers.
The story of A Man from Mandu starts with a gathering of people waiting for their Guru. While they wait they talk with each other regarding the God-man they are waiting for. Soon, the Guru arrives and narrates a story that leaves them hypnotized, that answers all their questions, and that eventually clears their doubts about his intentions.
The Guru has a way with words. His stimulating stories have open-ended conclusions which have the ability to sate the appetite of the modern man and win hearts, eventually leading to an increase in his following and popularity.
But, this is just an act of deception, an act put forward for a light-hearted gamble. Very soon the deception transforms into a brand that alters the lives of those involved in the act. It causes an unforeseeable impact on Dhawal and Tarini while molding them into different personalities.
So, what was the bet and what caused it? How a con artist became a successful Holy Man?
Let’s talk about the writing style
The whole process of transformation of Dhawal into the God-man seems realistic and believable. With ever-increasing cases of Holy Men being arrested for violent crimes and scandals, the author has taken up a relevant topic to showcase a sordid truth.
Manoj V Jain very aptly captures man’s never-ending quest for answers throughout his life and how Godmen promise to deliver those answers in a cryptic manner that suit most life situations, thus satisfying the masses.
By the way of this novel, the author shows us just how easy it is to claim to do unbelievable things to garner a following that soon turns into a money-making business at the expense of innocent devotees.
In a simple language, and with an even simpler narrative, A Man from Mandu portrays how superstition and blind faith is fuelled for the benefit of a few while the vast majority waits in vain for miracles that will supposedly improve their life conditions.
What I loved the most?
I loved the quotes at the start of every chapter. Those hold a lot of wisdom. Also, the short stories that the God-man narrated in the gatherings were deeply inspirational. One of the quotes that spoke to me reads like this – “… You are the Universe, and the entire universe lies within you… The truth you and other humans believe in is only their own perception…”
I like the fact that that the author exhibits how each story can be interpreted and reinterpreted to align with everyone’s life situations and how open-ended tales are seen as mystical messages by the Guru to his devotees where each follower moulds the message as per their own understanding and aspirations.
It was also interesting to see how new-age technologies and methods are used to propagate the God man’s message and to bring different demographics under his fold.
Would I recommend the book?
Yes. It was an interesting and light read. Any reader who likes the idea of the premise that I have discussed above may enjoy this drama. A Man from Mandu is a short read of 169 pages and can be finished in a single sitting. Can’t wait to read it?
Buy your copy of A Man from Mandu using the link below.