Elated is a word that doesn’t even come close to explain what I really feel about completing a mammoth of a book, a classic, Mrutyunjay by Shivaji Sawant. I had been wanting to read it since I was 17 yo!
This book follows the life of Karna and reiterates Mahabharata from his perspective. If I say that this the BEST mythological fiction there ever will be then I am not kidding. If I say that this is the BEST take on Mahabharata then I am not kidding. Every aspect of this book is sheer perfection. I read/heard this book in Marathi and it has been translated in many Indian languages.
I heard this book on Storytel app and devoured it slowly. The language is top notch and there were so many Marathi words that got added to my “vocablibrary” (that’s the word i just coined 🤭) Add to that the author philosophizes on smallest aspect of life like a the dew drops. The character of Ashwathama especially won my heart because of his perspective of looking at the world. The need of Karna to know why he is so different from his family or if he is their child at all, simply breaks your heart every step of the way.
The book hosts multiple perspectives. So you get to hear Kunti’s side of the story, Shon’s (Karna’s younger brother) story, Vrushali’s (Karna’s wife) story, Duryodhana’s story and Krishna’s side of the story. Then the scene of Draupadi vastraharan tore my heart! This book has multiple quotable quotes and the author personifies even the feelings like revenge. Every sentence penned in this book has a lot to offer to its readers.
To articulate my thoughts about this book is difficult because I felt that as a reader I lived with the characters as I was listening to the book.
Pls do read Mrutyunjay if you want to consume good literature and if you truly love mythological fiction genre.
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