Ajaya -Roll of Dice by Anand Neelakantan. A review

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The epic which ruled the hearts of zillions could be remade only by legends. Here Anand Neelakantan did not just remake the epic but engineered the right weapon to cut through the story which was as strong as a diamond. It might have been suidical hadn’t he portrayed this antagonistic Mahabharath in the most exquisite and aesthetic manner. The author showed the mettle to demolish the rotten yet celebrated belief of victory of good over evil. He saw through the invalidity of Dharma which justified the vile atrocities and blindfolded the mass.


Author seamlessly portrayed Suyodhana’s side of the story. The story of Mahabharata is known to everyone, yet author succeeded in inducing the curiosity in the readers to know what happens next; or to put it this way- how does the author view each instances. The quintessential example would be Arjun shooting the parrot, which was viewed as an act of chivalry but the pain of the bird and its mate was not seen by anyone till date or no one dared to point out. The rebellious venture of the author was real chivalry. During the initial part of the story, portraying the Pandavas as bullies was painful but while sailing in the same boat of Suyodhana, the author opened new realms of thoughts and insight to the predisposition of Pandavas’ Dharma. Ekalavya’s escape from Thakshaka, Karna’s competition to become the Dharmaveera, etc are explained stupendously. No visual media would provide the effects that he permeated through words.
 Arjuna who was considered the greatest warrior in the history was impotent in accepting the favoritism. Eklavya who gave his thumb as Gurudakshina proved that he was more of a man. The society which brutally follows caste system accepts polygamy and polyandry is a contradiction. Author succeeded in divulging several similar social double standards.
The book makes the reader yearning for the sequel. How does he portray Bhagavath Geetha would be interesting to see. But for that we need to wait for the sequel.Can’t wait to grab a copy of Rise of Kali
The book contains a lot of characters but none seems negligible.  Author made sure that each character was portrayed with utmost perfection. The fact that author decided to write the story in two books is an intelligent decision.
Except for a few typos and the word Utopian used by Bhishma, the book is a nearly perfect one

I feel really small in rating the book but I would rate it

Rating : 4.0

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