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Akin: An Intense Literary Epic

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  36 ratings  ·  22 reviews
Reminiscent of human sagas such as The Alchemist and the Life of Pi, AKIN unapologetically delves deeper into the human condition, masterfully weaving the triumph of the human spirit against its darkest shadows.

"The book is written in such a way as to provoke pathos and curiosity." - Charles Franklin, Midwest Book Review

Aydan awakens to voices he does not recognize - feari
Paperback, 532 pages
Published July 1st 2014 by Self
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Average rating 3.86  · 
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Aug 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I felt rather woeful and reclusive after I finished this book. Not because it was a woeful or reclusive story - but because that's how I feel sometimes after finishing a book that I was particularly happy to be immersed in. Almost like being sad that I am no longer going to be buried in the world that I'd been reading.

It can be hard to describe what sets apart an enjoyable book from a good book from a really good book. But I've come to the conclusion that a really good book is one that leaves yo
L.A. Wild
Jan 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is an incredible book with so many psychological layers I couldn’t stop thinking about Aydan/Akin after I put it down. In a way, I could imagine this is what our ancestors would have been like before we had science to support and unpack uncertainty. Our imagination would have been used to explain and try and fix that which could not be understood.

Akin is a very raw and powerful tale. The author has done a brilliant job capturing Aydan’s journey the hardship he endures, and the people he mee
Aug 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Young Adults.
I was lucky enough to receive a copy of the book in return for an honest review. All that you read in this review is just my opinion. I read the book in a little bit less than 6 hours, spread across two days. I actually received it yesterday. Though I didn't have the time to read it in the afternoon, I thought I might read a little before bed. Almost three hundred pages later, I look up at the time and it was long past midnight. It was quite a fascinating book, one that I had to force myself to ...more
Mike Robbins
Jan 13, 2015 rated it liked it
This is a book that will entrance and inspire some, and irritate the hell out of others. It’s very ambitious; author Robin Murarka wants to depict the human condition, pretty much – but in places he aims too high, then lets himself down with some poor text editing and undisciplined writing. But when this book is good, it can be very good indeed.

It opens in an unnamed time and place, probably the remote past, and possibly the Middle East; it is set in the semi-arid lands that are not part of the
Travis Jared
Mar 02, 2015 rated it it was ok
At the risk of straining an analogy, reading Murarka's sprawling Akin is rather reminiscent of enduring an indie film prodigy's earliest works. There are moments of unexpected joy and sadness, occasional piercing insights into the human condition, and the feeling that the frame is just a small window's reveal of a vast world the creator has mapped out beyond the edges. These moments are invariably interspersed with interludes of ambiguous pseudo-artistic navel-gazing and clumsy reminders of the ...more
Jan 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book took me to a far off, desperate world filled with people hardened by an even harsher landscape. Though that might not sound appealing, I found the book immensely satisfying. It follows Ayden, the boy of a peasant farmer who starts having dreams/voices in his head that make his village think he is possessed. From there he is taken prisoner and the story follows his growth into a man, having traveled through a war torn land full of tragedy. This book is deeply philosophical. It explores ...more
Jul 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful! Fascinating story line. Characters sucked me in. I loved that it was a long book with short chapters, made for a very convenient, satisfying read. Won via Goodreads Giveaway.
Janet K
May 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Having completed AKIN, I recommend you read the book prior to reading this in-depth review as it will dilute aspects of the novel that should be experienced the first time through.

The novel begins with a notably full prologue, and though it seems an autonomous work of prose, it is tethered to the rest of the novel. The style is enigmatic and hints at a greater world beyond its pages. We strike the story running in the first chapter as Aydan awakens and is confronted by voices then villagers. We
Suzanne Steinberg
Jan 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
I enjoy the darker aspects of the novel as well as the character change and development. At times the switching in the narrative from within the boy’s mind and thoughts to an objective narrator of the outside environment is confusing. I have enjoyed the spiritual journey of how he searches for his truth, and the consequences and hardships that come with it. I felt as if I had been given a unique insight into a man’s spiritual journey as he finds his oneness of his own belief system, and how we o ...more
Phil Baird
Nov 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I purchased 'Akin' at the Sydney Book Expo where I met author Robin Murarka. He was a friendly chap and because of his demeanor I decided to buy his debut novel despite my hesitation at investing in independent works (not that I have anything against independent works, but generally the quality control seems sub-par).

I knew little of the story except for its exotic cover and a brief blurb about a boy's struggles. I went in unassuming much as Mr. Murarka's attitude was quite professional and humo
Mar 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Akin reads like a fable and words itself in a whimsical way. It is sure to polarize readers; those emerging from its pages, confused and distraught at the purposefully energetic style will complain at the expectations it places upon them. Others will clap long and hard, emancipated from the plethora of re-hashed words unnecessarily printed on less exotic works.

It is everything one could ask for in a written work of fiction. The undeniable force with which it entices us to face the reality of rea
Jan 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
First of all, Robin Murarka is a gifted story teller. The author can draw you into the story and fill you with an instant isolation of another world.
However there were so many of parts of Akin that felt, to me, as though the writer was deep in thought, remembering some ancient tribal dream or story and then suddenly would decide: "I'm done". For at certain points in the story, I would feel like I was being kicked out of book by some misplaced dialog, characters that acted against their developin
Gotherella BioVenom
Sep 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
4.5/5 :)

This was a really good read.
It was brutal, it was harsh but it was still somewhat gentle, explorative.

Following our main character from a steady, uninteresting life to a life of horrors, friendships, and discovery was great.
It has an interesting format as well, something a little different from a standard novel.

I will put a trigger warning though, this book does contain discussions and acts or rape/sexual abuse, so if that's not something you can read you have warning.
That being said, i
Elizabeth Parker
Aug 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I read this after Rone Isa and though they are written by the same author it feels like there is a distinct difference in the style. It feels like Akin is a lot more introspective while Rone Isa is more accessible, or more movement based. I enjoyed both for different reasons.
Warren Dean
Jan 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
Akin is a novel which explores many diverse themes and, for this reason, will elicit different reactions from different readers.

We meet the main protagonist, Aydan, as a very young man who begins a journey which turns out to be both physical and spiritual. The world he inhabits is a harsh one; a hot, arid desert where safety is transient, and comfort an unattainable dream. His journey is arduous and he encounters many grim and harrowing events along the way. Some of his experiences are pretty gr
Elizabeth Krall
Jan 03, 2015 rated it it was ok
‘Akin’ is, at its core, a tale about the journey of a boy to a man. Aydan grows up in a small village, the son of a poor farmer. His issues with his father are a theme throughout the book. One night, Aydan is forcibly taken from his home. His experiences during and after his imprisonment help to shape him into the man he becomes at the end of the book. Alongside the story of Aydan/Akin is another story of warring states; the two stories entwine to produce the final outcome.

This is a very long no
Jan 05, 2015 rated it liked it
This review has been crossposted from my blog at The Cosy Dragon . Please head there for more in-depth reviews by me, which appear on a timely schedule.

Aydan has dreams that are proscribed by his tribe. He is sentenced to torture for this, but is set to witnessing his 'brother' suffer instead, and so he is filled with conviction that he must escape. What follows is a long distance trip that witnesses the fall of an empire.

This novel is aimed at exploring the extremities of the human condition. W
May 04, 2015 rated it liked it
**Received a copy as part of Shut Up & Read's Read it & Reap program in exchange for an honest review.**

It took me at least 10 chapters to really get invested into this story, but as soon as I did, it was great. It is a lengthy novel so keep that in mind if you are looking for a quick read, this is not the story for you. Also, as others have stated it does have doses of graphic darkness, but I really enjoyed that since I felt it really added to the story and what Aydan is living through in his w
Mo Jacobs
May 07, 2015 rated it it was ok
I'm not sure... this story was fascinating, confusing and exacerbating all in one. Robin Murarka did an excellent job of weaving a story that you had to finish. It made me question what I was reading and tried to sort it all out into something familiar. This is definitely not a light reading adventure, which is a nice change of pace. The main character seemed to be as confused as the reader and kept that way til the end. Just when I thought I knew what was going on the story took a twist and led ...more
I received an electronic copy of this book by the author for an honest review. Akin chronicles the journey of Aydan, as he struggles to survive both the harsh landscape of his world and his own thoughts. His rantings as he travels provide the reader with a snapshot of Aydan's chaotic mind. Although the writing was a little rough in places, my opinion is that the author did that deliberately to showcase Aydan's state of consciousness. This book shows the worst of humanity and the ability of the h ...more
Victoria Brinius
Mar 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was an interesting read, and I liked how real Aydan seemed. There were instances where I could understand what he was thinking and why. The book was a little long for me (515 pages). However within these pages the author covers so many things. A few are the loss of a pet, a lonely child and of course the feeling of faith. This is definitely not a book to read fast, but to rather read a chapter, and then ponder its meaning. I spent a lot of time reading this book, but I really enjoyed its me ...more
Aug 15, 2014 rated it it was ok
"Akin" is an incredibly interesting story that captivated me from beginning to end. It features the life story of a young man who is harshly treated by his father only to encounter even harsher conditions after waking up in a prison under a sadistic prison keeper. The book follows his escape from that prison to a new life. Several twists and turn lead him into various ups and downs until he ends up where he is meant to be.
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Lisa Farrell
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Dec 23, 2019
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Apr 02, 2020
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Jul 25, 2014
Harit Auga
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Jul 28, 2015
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Goodreads Authors...: Reviewers Sought for AKIN: An Intense Literary Epic 2 9 Aug 07, 2020 02:56AM  
Making Connections: 3621. AKIN by Robin Murarka 7 25 Feb 03, 2015 06:52AM  

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Within every story that Robin Murarka creates, there encompasses a strong underlying literary quality, coating any genre, whether it be science fiction, historical or horror, with a thick, raw humanity. This exposes itself in ways that intensify the reader experience, alluding to both a history and future that echo long after the story is over. This natural tendency to excavate those hidden trauma ...more

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