By Ayush Pathak. Grade B+.
The book is a mixture of distinct black and white which can’t quite be accounted for by the colour gray.
A heroic tale timed in modern age – a battle of existence between evil and the good, bred on the ashes of the four thousand year old legendry Epic Wars. The Immortal Protectors of the Temple are finding it hard to maintain control over a new rising evil power, far greater in magnitude than the previous war. The Shield that protects Earth from external attacks had stopped the invading Dark Seekers, also called Nishachars – a fled group from some distant dying planet for long. Until four thousand years ago, when the shield was ruptured and the entire mortal world turned on the edge of demolition. It was then the immortal protectors, the Light Seekers, more commonly known as Devs, along with the remaining army of mortals fought and drove back the combined army of Nishachars and Asurs and restored the shield but at a great price. The Nishachars retreated and since then they have grown and redoubled their army several times, waiting for their prophesized Dark Lord to rise. The Devs, on the other hand, knowing that they wont be able to stop the Great Dark Lord, if risen – formed a secret brotherhood named The Temple of Avinasi and scattered themselves throughout the world. Their only feeble hope lies in an ancient legend named Kalki, the last prophesized Avatar of Vishnu and unaware of all this, two fourteen year old boys are presently spending their time merrily together in the mortal world, innocently oblivious to the fact, that how much changed their destinies are from what it seems and how much the worlds fate is dependent on them.
This mythology-influenced fiction novel follows an understanding that all religious legends (the polytheistic ones, at least) are based along similar occurrences: beyond the average human world, memory or understanding, but Pathak has made the story line more along Hindu mythology than others. The book is nevertheless an amalgam of a variety of discrete legends pertaining to the supernatural. Never have I read a book, fiction or otherwise, that combines Hindu gods, pegasus, yeti(s) and aliens – all in one. It sounds like a terrible parody of a movie when I put it like that, but the final result gels together quite nicely.
Speaking of movies, the author tends to use a writing style redolent to that of a screenwriter more than a novelist. There are times where a paragraph might seem like a waste of words, but once you read every detail, it places you in the world that the author is envisioning. Every tinge of awkwardness, sadness, frustration and surprise; his words paint a vivid picture that lets you live out the moment second by second.
There are two aspects of the book that put me off a bit. While drawing a comparison to one of my more-liked mythology fiction book, I found that the uncanny similarities between this book and Rick Riodran’s Percy Jackson were, to say the least, unusual. In both, the protagonist is (I wonder why people even bother writing *spoiler alert*, it won’t stop you from reading further anyway, will it?) guided by humanoid mythical characters to a sanctuary for their kind, where upon reaching/on the way, they find a powerful ally who is the daughter of a powerful god, with whom she shares an uncomfortable relationship. Admittedly, the amount of leeway is less when it comes to writing fiction based on mythical realities, but something a little more unpredictable would definitely have been preferred.
Another thing was the author’s methodology of writing anything related to human attraction. Crushes, romance, jealousy in love: the author writes it in a way that brings an almost audible cringe to one’s face. You know that something is wrong when the chapter title is referring to a budding attraction, followed by three exclamation marks to stress on the romanticism. This does get mellowed down later on, but the initial effect is quite scarring.
Despite these few limitations, the author’s pouring imagination progresses the novel in quite a remarkable way. As the first of many books to come in The Temple of Avinasi series, it paves the way for a fantastic story ahead. There’s no reason that Ayush Pathak won’t sustain the benchmark he has set with this piece of writing. Here’s hoping for his success.
- Review: Temple Of Avinasi: The Legend Of Kalki - March 7, 2014
- Review: The Karachi Deception - December 8, 2013
- Review: Been There Bungled That - November 29, 2013
- Review: The Eye Of Minds - October 19, 2013
- Review: The Cuckoo’s Calling - September 25, 2013