WRITING STYLE: 4.5/5
ENTERTAINMENT QUOTIENT: 4.5/5
When Tarikshir: The Awakening first came my way, I wasn’t much impressed by the cover. It’s kind of messy and too chaotic for my taste. I assumed it to be one of those run-of-the-mill mythological/historical thrillers that everyone is writing these days.
Thankfully, that wasn’t the case. Once I started reading it, I was in for a great surprise. Read on to know my thoughts on Tarikshir, a book that will surely blow your mind just as it did mine.
What to expect?
There isn’t a single category in which Tarikshir: The Awakening can be perfectly fit into. It’s a fantasy novel that draws heavily from our mythology and history. Like a cherry on top, it has elements of thrill and mystery as well.
It won’t be wrong to say that the book is a massive entertainer; one that is sure to leave you spellbound with all that it has to offer.
Let’s talk about the storyline
In ancient India, Valikesh, a vanar from the army of Hanuman tries to steal his way into the protected fortress of Ravana in order to steal its riches and make some quick money. He is motivated by his greed and lust, while doing so, he clears the way for an ancient evil to inhabit the mortal world as we know it.
Centuries later in 1826, in the small princely state of Devangarh in Rajasthan, Raja Ravindra Pratap Chauhan refuses to succumb to the demands of the British Raj. He is willing to fight till death for his kingdom and his people. But war is brewing and that much is quite obvious to both the King and his benevolent son, Rudra Pratap Chauhan.
Amidst the ensuing chaos, an accident claims the life of the old Raja and his most trusted aide. Now, it is upon the amateur but determined Rudra to make sense of the situation.
While he is still coming to terms with his loss and the accompanying set of responsibilities, deep underneath the city of Devangarh, there is an evil brewing.
A series of ritualistic murders stun the kingdom and its residents. And with the bodies deprived of all their blood, the happenings hint at an evil at work. Masked strangers are spotted throughout the kingdom and the mystery behind their strange appearances and disappearances remains uncovered. There are also hints that suggest that the old Raja was murdered.
How will Rudra establish peace in such ensuing madness? Will he be able to provide the leadership that is required of a Raja in such turbulent times? Or will he succumb to the pressures of kingship? Who killed the old Raja? Who is behind the strange bloodless bodies? And who are the masked strangers?
The answers to all these tantalizing questions lie in the pages of this compelling novel. It will be a shame to not enjoy such an entertaining read.
What about the writing style
The writing style of Khayaal Patel is excellent. He knows how to captivate his readers and is able to do so throughout the book. The language that he uses is simple. The narratives are crisp and their manner breezy.
In Tarikshir: The Awakening, he makes use of a number of plot twists throughout the book that manages to engage the readers and keep them hooked. I love how the book has all the ingredients of a good entertainer – action, suspense, thrill, adventure, romance, family drama, sibling rivalry and a diabolical force at work.
I also like that the romance in the book doesn’t overpower the narrative – the author includes just a dash here and there to make the characters livelier and more human.
How good are the characters?
The characters of Tarikshir are an assorted bunch. There are characters that will make you flinch at the kind of evil that they possess. On the other hand, there are characters that will make you marvel at their principles and their do-good-ness.
Most of all, the characters do a great job of living up to the story and the expectations of the reader.
On a very basic level, they reflect the moral dilemmas and struggles of all mortals. How to keep your calm in the face of adversity? How much power is too much? How can one win over greed and lust? What is more important – honor or life?
In between the pages of this compelling read, lies the answers to such deep philosophical questions.
Was the climax good?
It is very rare to find a great book which does not disappoint in its climax. Many brilliantly written works fail miserably when it comes to writing their climaxes.
Tarikshir: The Awakening is a different story, though. The climax of the book takes the story to an altogether new level which makes the series even more tantalizing than it already is.
Yes, I am talking about the game getting bigger, juicer and more action-packed. The stakes are raised and there is a new evil waiting to be unleashed. Suffice to say, it is one of the best climaxes I have had the pleasure of reading this year.
What did I not like?
There are just two things that I did not like in the book. As already stated in the previous paragraphs, the cover was a tad too drab for my taste. It surely could have been better and more exciting.
Another thing which leaves me unhappy is that the book is a part of a series. With a climax as wonderful as this one, it will be sheer torture to wait for the next part. And that’s the biggest bone of contention here. I am hopeful though, that the next part will surely be worth the wait.
It all boils down to the entertainment quotient
From the moment Tarikshir: The Awakening opens till the page on which the final lines are written, the book is a blindfolded roller coaster ride. You never know what happens next until you really experience it.
One has to read the book to actually understand what I am talking about here. Even the climax is such a sensational one that it takes the story and the characters to a whole new level.
The excitement that I am experiencing for the next part is so palpable that it feels like Game of Thrones (with all the waiting for the next season) all over again. I would so love to see a movie based on the story of Tarikshir someday. Hello Bollywood, are you listening?
The final verdict
In the end, it’s a no-brainer that this book comes as a much-recommended read from me. It will be worth every penny and every moment that the reader invests in it. So, don’t deny yourself a great read and order the book right away.
Pick the book if
- If you are looking for a highly entertaining read.
- If you are historical/mythological/fantasy fiction lover.
- If you like discovering new Indian authors (good ones) and their work.
Skip the book if
- If you do not enjoy historical/mythological/fantasy fiction.
Can’t wait to read it? Buy your copy of Tarikshir from the link below.