Author : Vivek Dutta Mishra
Genre : Mythology
Ratings : ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐/5
Reading Mythological books have always been a pleasure to me. You get to learn a lot of things and gain so much knowledge and peace of mind compared to any other genre. It helps you to reflect on the good and bad deeds of your life. It shows that the seeds of war didn't emerge between the cousins before the war, but it was sown way before the birth of Kauravas and Pandavas.
There are so many books I read on the epic Mahabharat, but what makes this book different is the fact that while every other book starts directly with the birth of Pandavas and Kauravas or just a glimpse of their ancestors, this book explicitly focuses on the very birth of the place Kurukshetra and life of Bhishma.
This book gives the details of the birth of Devbrata and how he became the grand Bhishma. Not many people are aware of the Devbrata being the accursed God and his boon of choosing death at his own will.
Devbrata is the son of King Shantanu of Hastinapur and Ganga. This book speaks about Devbrata's life from even before his birth and the oath which made him the grand Bhisma from a mere prince of Hastinapur. And how he stood tall against anything and everything that came as a harm to Aryavart. Devbrata is the 8th accursed God who was cursed to die right after their birth. But fortunately or unfortunately Devbrata was the only one who survived.
The story starts with Sri Krishna asking Bhishma to unfold his story from his perspective. We see the story from the point of view of Bhishma, where he narrates his journey and the glory and destruction of Aryavart and the reasons and events that led to the great war of Mahabharat.
It was absolutely chilling to read the way Devbrata killed Jantu, the Prince of Panchal and the way he avenged his brother Chitrangad's death using the mighty Divyastra which only a few have knowledge of. The conversation between Sri Krishna and Bhishma was mesmerizing to read.
It talks about friendship between Devbrata and Ved who are now well known as Bhishma and Maharshi Ved Vyas. It includes tales of Kansa, Jarasandh and their friendship which turned into a relationship, Kansa's curse of him being killed by the 8th child of his sister Devaki.
Bhisma's prophecy to Jarasandh“You have unleashed an evil that would outlive you and me and my Divyastra.Very soon, people will forget the difference between Divyastra and Pakshepastra.” sends chill down the spine and let readers think whether he was talking about the modern day weapons.
I liked how the author has included the tale of other regions such as Anga, Yaksha, Gorkha, Magadh, Gandhar, Mathura, Apar Kunti etc. and their respective kings and generations and their internal feuds.
The one thing that made this story stand out is the battle between Bhishma and Bhagwan Parshuram. It feels like it's happening right in front of you. Also, I liked the character of Amba who became the reason for this feud.
This book is the first of its series so you won't be reading about the Mahabharat war in this book. But it gives us a very clean closure with young Prince Pandu conquering Mathura and freeing Vasudev and Devaki from Kansa's prison.
The author has done an extensive research for this book and I really applaud him for his effort in writing this book. Not many people these days try to preserve The ancient epics. The narration was very well paced and I couldn't keep the book aside even for a minute. Even though it's a lengthy book you can feel the excitement flowing throughout.
Although I expected a little more detail of Devbrata and Ved's Gurukul experience and Bhishma and Bhagwaan Parshuram's life as a student and teacher, I loved the way the author has depicted the story and the characters.
But nevertheless this book is very addictive for people like me who love to read our epic tales and can never get enough of it. I totally loved reading this book.
I am eagerly waiting for the second book in this series.
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