It was one of those happy moment of a reader’s life for when he gets a book which has grabbed much eyeballs, savoring through the pages and couldn’t control the joy of the reading with other readers. I am speaking about the latest book by Ashwin Sanghi that has grabbed it’s berth in the bestsellers realm. The book is the fattest among Ashwin’s Bharat series, but it doesn’t make us feel its too large.
The story starts with a train that has been filled with dead corpses with blood split all over it from Sialkot reaching its destination in Amritsar. The author then takes us to 250 BC, post – Kalinga period where Emperor Ashoka entrusts his nine reliable men to guard a secret. This portion at the inception of the book really intrigues the readers about the enigma surrounding the classified information that’s been withhold to the readers. The information that is to be passed down generations makes the readers quizzing about the things that it can be for a long time when Ashwin jumps to the next chapter with Jawaharlal Nehru’s speech.
Like every other Ashwin Sanghi’s book, this book has been a result of indelible information and arduous research that has proven his versatility in amalgamating historical incidents with fictional characters. The readers are in for an awestruck when they find references of Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Shayam Prasad Mukherjee and even Steve Jobs finding their places inside the story as characters. Although Steve Jobs doesn’t contribute much to the story, Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s fictional character is linked as a friend to one of the protagonists and there the readers will find the brilliancy of Ashwin in blending real life characters turned over as fictional characters which doesn’t upset the readers.
The story continues about two really contrast persons mapping from their childhood till the new ages. Out protagonists Aravind and Arbaaz grew in two different cities Kolkata and Bombay. While Aravind is born in a rich family, Arbaaz is born as a son of a dock worker who later becomes the kingpin of Bombay with both the protagonists finding their way into politics. They both have the same intention of how to multiply their money and they both use different methods to do the same.
The narrative shifts to Ashoka, Samudra Gupta, Harsha where we find the secret that Ashoka entrusts with his nine reliable has been passed down the generations to the new age where the secret is explained over the period with a parallel narrative of Aravind and Arbaaz story. The contemporary Indian politics is sprinkled all over with real life facts and information nudged here and there adds nuances to the already strong story. The story thus ranges across times of Ashoka adn their followers, Partition times and the post independence period ranging till the modern times.
The pace doesn’t slow down even when the story shifts regularly. There is no wonder if this story is being taken as a Bollywood movie. It has all the key features to be made into an feature film and kudos to Ashwin Sanghi who has engaged the readers into his 588 fictional miracle making the readers forget about he outside world.
About the Book:
Title : The Sialkot saga
Author : Ashwin Sanghi
Publisher : Westland Publications
Genre : Fiction
ISBN : 9385724061 , 9789385724060
Copy : Flipkart Review Program
Flipkart : The Sialkot Saga by Ashwin Sanghi