I remember picking up Immortals of Meluha at the airport. The attractive cover coupled with an interesting synopsis had me hooked. Full credit to Amish, the other two books in the series lived up to the promise made in the first installment. So when Amish announced Scion of Ikshvaku, I looked forward to the book release with a lot of interest.
The book is a reimagining of the Ramayan without the mythological parts – a la Immortals of Meluha. A son is born to a king and then sent away to exile for fourteen years thanks to the scheming by one of the king’s wives. His wife and his brother accompany the hero in his exile. Ravana, the king of Lanka, abducts the wife.
All of us know the story, but what we expect from Amish is treatment. He has a wonderful way of mixing his personal philosophy into the story to make it contemporary. While the book has minor flashes of this, overall it is a huge disappointment. We don’t get to feel Rama’s pain at being seen as the reason for his father’s misfortunes. Neither do we get to experience his life in exile. Like a Sanjay Leela Bhansali movie, the book glosses over all this to paint an almost pain-free picture.
Amish will need to do better than this to be deserving of the 50000000 advance that he received for this series.