Asura- Tale of the vanquished- book review.

Author Anand Neelakantan
Publisher Leadstart Publishing Pvt Ltd
Publication Year 2012
ISBN-13 9789381576052
ISBN-10 9381576052
Language English
Binding Paperback
Number of Pages 500 Pages




Ramayana was first told to me by my mom at home. later it was part of syllabus at school. Rama was introduced as a avataram. if I remember right, there was so much debate about liking Lord Rama as he kept agni parkisha for his wife and sent her for vanavas.talking about Ravana, the image what is printed in everybody’s mind is his ten heads and the person who abducted Sita .Somehow I also got reminded of the movie RAVAAN. yes, Where Vikram is Robin-hood  for his village. though he is good, because of his anger against the awful policemen and his sister’s death makes him an antagonist.

Talking about this book, it is different, for first time  somebody has taken courage to depict an antagonist as main protagonist, write a book on Ravana. did I call it courage? yes, as I think this book would bring in lots of criticism , yet the author has brought in subtleness in not hurting the sentiments of people who believe Ramayana to be true. I loved the whole new perspective of the book, a fresh thinking, nice imagination.

The book starts off with Ravana saying, “For thousands of years, I have been vilified and my death is celebrated year after year in every corner of India. Why? Was it because I challenged the Gods for the sake of my daughter? Was it because I freed a race from the yoke of caste-based Deva rule? You have heard the victor’s tale, the Ramayana. Now hear the Ravanayana, for I am Ravana, the Asura, and my story is the tale of the vanquished.”

In this book author talks about so many new aspects, like comparing Aryan and Dravidian to Asura and Devas. Just not that, he also reveals the fact that there were so many evil things happening from then, namely caste system, various rituals. Ravana tries to fight against them. The asuras, believe in equality; their women are free to make their own decisions and merit is the cornerstone of political and social power. This difference in thinking brings in war between Devas and Asura.

It was a pleasure to see few illustrations given in the book . Book is indeed a page turner. Little big to carry while travelling. The coverage design is bright and clean. All in all for me this book is a brave attempt.

About the author:

Anand Neelakantan is a talented narrator from India. Asura: The Tale of the Vanquished is Neelakantan’s debut novel. He is currently working on another mythological tale that details the Kaurava’s version of the Mahabharata. He has a few satirical short stories to his credit.

Born in Kerala, Anand has been fascinated with mythology since his childhood. He is married to Aparna, and has two children, Abhinav and Ananya. Besides writing, Anand enjoys oil painting, reading, and drawing cartoons.

Thank You Leadstart Publishing Pvt Ltd for sending me this book for review.


6 thoughts on “Asura- Tale of the vanquished- book review.

  1. I personally loved this book. As a fan of Indian mythology I am always on the lookout for interesting re tellings of famous Indian epics as they present yet another dimension to an already famous story. And I thought Anand Neelakantan has done a lot of justice to the Ramayana through this book.

    And I especially loved how he used a new fictional character Bhadra to bring in an interesting viewpoint to Ravana’s story.

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