Sunday, 11 August 2013

Fire: A Hand of Kali : A Review : Imagination writ large...

Fire : A Hand of Kali is author T. G Ayer's  first novel in the Kali Series and it is a riveting novel indeed. Without giving away the entire plot, the story revolves around a young Indian born NRI girl, who suddenly discovers divine powers within her... is it a bane or a boon? To find out, one has to read the novel for oneself.

Firstly kudos to the author for trying to delve into the Indian mythology and history for the concept. The Indian mythology and History is so rich and diverse, that if exploited fully, it could give the Potter's and the Eragons a run for their money. Unfortunately, there is an utter dearth of authors who take up the challenge of writing fiction based on these. The fact that this author has, is a very great achievement indeed.

When I started reading this story ( I had read the book blurb before), honestly, till Chapter 5, I was really irritated, NOTHING WAS HAPPENING... but once you reach Chapter 5, the book, literally comes alive with action and adventure, after that the journey of the rest 400 odd pages seem to be a blur...

I give credit to the author, for correctly assigning the Indian deities along with their respective "powers" and their strengths and weaknesses. Also the way the plot builds up, is brilliant. The story seem to start slowly, but it then takes a rapid pace as events keep unfolding in quick succession keeping the readers on edge and hungering for more.

The language is lucid and easily understood, also the dialogues that the characters use, especially the major characters, are in keeping with the lingo of the youth. To read this book, one need not have any fore knowledge of Indian mythology. The characters are really well developed and the reader connects with them. Also, one is not kept in dark about any events which could spring a nasty surprise on the readers. The author does a very good job of building suspense and then solving it. No nasty or hasty surprises spring up upon the reader.

The only problem, I found with the book, is that there are several action sequences, which could have been handled better. The author seems to have been in a hurry or must not have given much thought to them while building up the main plot. But some action sequences, and there are some really good ones, are worth imagining...!! The different ancient weapons discussed in the book are also extremely exciting. Having grown up on a diet of Indian mythology myself, even I didn't know there were so many interesting weapons that our deities are in possession of...

In conclusion, I would say, that, this books targets the teens, not the older readers, but whoever the reader is, he or she would find the book an unforgettable journey.  As we journey with Maya, the protagonist, we enter a world, where there are rights and wrongs, the demons and the gods collide and faith is reasserted.
This book is not just a book, it's imagination writ large...

Image Courtesy : T G Ayer
                           Fire: A Hand of Kali Novel: ARC Copy

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