I am so disappointed. Not only because I had heard so much about this book and the writer, but also because my expectations were raised by the first h...moreI am so disappointed. Not only because I had heard so much about this book and the writer, but also because my expectations were raised by the first half of the book itself! So much so that, when it ended, I double checked to make sure I hadn't skipped a few pages!(less)
What's wrong with Indian authors? I mean, okay, I do not expect you guys to come up with a 'The God of Small Things' in your first stroke but come on,...moreWhat's wrong with Indian authors? I mean, okay, I do not expect you guys to come up with a 'The God of Small Things' in your first stroke but come on, you can do better than that!
'Chanakya's Chant' by Ashwin Sanghi attempts at being a historical fiction and a political satire, both at the same time because the writer switches between two eras 2300 years apart. The common thread, Chanakya. The master manipulator who had vowed to make Chandragupta Maurya the king of a united Bharat. A fascinating guy with really noble intentions, no doubt. But since much had been said and written about Chanakya, and to make the book more relevant to the present day masses Sanghi paints a modern-day Chanakya who is nothing short of Superman. I still do not complain. In fact, the writer is successful in his objective of introducing Chanakya to young Indian readers and proving how relevant his teachings are even today. But I have a problem with the treatment of the book. The writer completely destroys whatever interest that had arisen within you after reading the synopsis, with something modern Indian authors simply cannot refrain from- the Indian masala (literally, Indian spices but figuratively, melodrama) Sanghi had an excellent idea, an inspiration and a full-fledged plot at hand! All he had to do was adapt it to modern times. But the guy simply ruined this opportunity by falling to the temptation of a possibility of his book being adapted into a film. (Why not, they made 'Five-Point Someone' and 'One Night at the Call Center into films) I agree that if it happened in Chanakya's times it can happen now too. Sure, Indian politics is full of blood and gore and it's very easy to be tempted to write about it, but please do justice to it.
The time-trick is good, the writer has saved a lot of google-ing for the readers by giving a parallel track of Chanakya but the stories never blend together. In the sense that, the present day version seems like a word-to-word translation of the past! What's the point if you've given it already. I honestly enjoyed the past-version more.
The characters are flat, including Chanakya and Gangasagar's. They seem too snobbish, omniscient and preachy all the time. It's annoying.
More than anything, it saddens me that the writer blew-up the opportunity of taking Chanakya to the global level by introducing him to not only the new Indian generation but also the global generations. (less)
"Super-cheesy- A book written espescially to cater to the reality-show loving, entertainment-at-the-cost-of-anything class"
Like most other hyped books...more"Super-cheesy- A book written espescially to cater to the reality-show loving, entertainment-at-the-cost-of-anything class"
Like most other hyped books, 'The Hunger Games' by Suzanne Collins too disappointed me. A mind-blowing concept, no doubt, but one that was marred with poor execution, silly romance, no great language witchcraft, blunt characters and a feable plot. Just when you start to think "Ok, now does the real action or drama start" is the time when it really ends. The books starts with the story of Katniss Everdeen, the protagonist in one of her monologues, going about her usual hunting routine (quite a shock to the readers to imagine this fiesty girl, roaming in the woods, looking for a kill). Her story develops through conversations with her best friend/ love Gale and her being develops through memories of her father, her relationship with her estranged mother and the-person-i-love-the-most-in-the-world sister Prim. So far so good, but the real plot starts to unfold as the preparations run top gear for the country's annual ritual, The Hunger Games. Since the story is based on a fictitious country Panem, situated in the now North America, the introduction of new rituals and traditions was expected. And the concept of Hunger Games, although not altogether new, does kinda blow you away. 24 contestants thrown in some remote, manually-controllede place, fighting each other to death. Great. But as the story goes on unfolding, the description of all of Panem seems flawed. I mean, if everyone has a TV set, why not telephones for Gale and Katniss to arrange to meet or a computer for Katniss to learn about various medicinal herbs! Nevertheless, the Games are described well and Katniss and Gale's hatred towards the rulers "Capitol" and the mere conecpt of the Games is believable. But I think Collins has left a lot to the imagination of the readers. The description of the Capitol, the other districts, Katniss's village, and the actual arena have gaping loopholes. There is no memorable character in the book, apart from Katniss. No depth to Lover Boy, in fact, I liked Haymitch's character more. Language is nothing great too. But all this could have been forgiven if the story had that punch. It simply lacks drama! I mean, come on, you need more than a pack of wolves for the climax!!! As to why this book was made into a trilogy also cannot be understood. It seems the writer has forcefully cropped it at a weird point to make three books out of it, which also pisses me off. Come on, if you are a good writer, you will always be remembered even if you've written a single book in an entire lifetime... A wasted concept, that's how I can sum it up. Still need to decide whether I want to read the next one...(less)