PR Sandesh Rane from Ketchum Sampark wrote to me recently, “I write to you on behalf of Mr. Shatrujeet Nath, author of The Guardians of the Halahala – The Vikramaditya Trilogy.”
About Shatrujeet Nath: Sandesh’s mail said the following about the author. Shatrujeet Nath had done odd jobs like selling ice-creams, peddling computer training courses, writing ad copy and being a business journalist at The Economic Times. In 2009, at the peak of his career, Shatrujeet quit journalism to write fiction. He became a published author with his book, The Karachi Deception in 2013. The Guardians of the Halahala is his second book and the first one of The Vikramaditya Trilogy.
Shatrujeet has also co-founded JokerStreet Entertainment, a company that will develop engaging content and build entertainment franchises that can be leveraged across media platforms. The Vikramaditya Trilogy is the first intellectual property to debut from the JokerStreet stable.
When he is not writing fiction and poetry, he reads books, plays with his daughter – and dreams of buying a small castle in Scotland. Until then he plans to live in Mumbai.
Synopsis: Sandesh also informed me of the gist of the story in the novel. The deadly poison Halahala came out from the depths of the White Lake when devas and asuras were churning it. To prevent it from damaging much, it was swallowed by Shiva.
But was the poison completely destroyed?
A little poison still remained inside a weapon and it was potent enough to take the possessor towards victory. And both asuras and devas wanted it desperately.
Indra and Shukracharya were plotting to possess the Halahala. In the meantime, Shiva turns to Samrat Vikramaditya to safeguard it. It is now up to him and his Nine Gems to vanquish the supernatural and prevent the destruction of the universe!
The human king has given his word to protect the Halahala, and he is determined to keep both – his word and the Halahala! But can Vikramaditya hold out against the greed and cunning of the magical devas and asuras? And how much is he prepared to lose to honour his promise to Shiva?
Rooted in Hindu mythology, The Guardians of the Halahala is the first book of The Vikramaditya Trilogy, an inspired take on the legend of the Halahala. Blending ancient lore and fiction, Shatrujeet Nath tells a sweeping tale of greed, deception and honour, while creating a new band of Indian heroes.
My Take: It took me some time to complete the book. I noted the following points while reading this book.
1. It was not the White Lake that was churned for nectar (amruta). It was the milky ocean.
2. Garuda is Vishnu’s vehicle and one would not expect that he would do spying for Indra.
3. The description of Garuda that is given fits that of Lord Sharabeshwarar, an avtar of Lord Shiva, who fought with Lord Narasimha to pacify the latter’s anger after He killed Hiranyakashapu.
Not just these but also a few other things were significant in the book. I believe that if a character is taken off mythology for a new creation, it should follow the original concept in structure and characterization though the situations can be changed. Other than this I am definitely impressed by the plot and if I can get hold of the other two books, I would be interested in reviewing them too.
Book Title: The Guardians of the Halahala – The Vikramaditya Trilogy.
Author: Shatrujeet Nath.
Publisher (Year): Jaico Publishing House.
Number of Pages: 412.