Book Review: Yama’s Lieutenant and the Stone Witch by Anuja Chandramouli

  • ISBN: 9780143428503
  • Genre: Fiction / Mythology
  • Publishers: Penguin Random House
  • Price: Rs. 299/-  ( I got the book for review from the author)
As Yama's Lieutenant, Agni Prakash, has diligently been tracking down demons and spirits that threaten peace on earth and dispatching them to his lord's thousand hells. Danger is a constant in his job, but this time an apocalypse threatens his entire world. Agni must go up against a terrifying sorceress-adept in the ancient art of stone magic-and her bestial army of demoniacal creatures who used to be humans before they were transformed into willing killing machines. The witch has a nightmarish vision for a new world that involves large scale culling of the humans-and it falls to Agni to stop her.

He must find the Samayakalas, the mysterious keepers of time and reset the clock before all life is destroyed. However, any contact with the Samayakalas is forbidden to mortal and immortal alike and those who flout the ancient decree risk incurring punishment far worse than death. The price asked of him is an impossible one, but Yama's Lieutenant does not have a choice. Enlisting the help of old friends, he must submit to being borne across an ocean of death and destruction to find the Samayakalas before darkness engulfs them all.  

Behind the Book

About the Author

Anuja Chandramouli is a bestselling Indian author and New Age Indian Classicist. Her highly acclaimed debut novel, Arjuna: Saga of a Pandava Warrior-Prince, was named by Amazon India as one of the top 5 books in the Indian Writing category for the year 2013. Kamadeva: The God of Desire and Shakti: The Divine Feminine are her other bestsellers. Currently all three books are being translated into Hindi, Marathi, Gujarathi and Bengali, a real achievement for one so young. Her brand new book, an epic fantasy called Yama’s Lieutenant has received an overwhelming response.

An accomplished orator, she regularly conducts workshops on Creative Writing, Story Telling and Mythology in schools, colleges and various other platforms. Her motivational speeches have also been well received. According to Chandramouli, her work with youngsters in the rural belt helping them improve their Spoken English and Writing skills has been wonderfully satisfying and enriching. This happily married, mother of two little girls, lives in Sivakasi, Tamil Nadu. She is a student of classical dance and Yoga. Currently, she is hard at work on an awesome new adventure with Yama’s Lieutenant.
Me thinks

If there is one author whose writing I have been following since the first book then it has to be Anuja Chandramouli and the best part is she has never failed to surprise with both her stories and her writing. One thing I can vouch for is the growth in her writing. The depth and poignancy has just increased with a sense of clarity when it comes to her books. Though she doesn't use a language which can be called easy, she makes it perfectly connectable for a reader and ensures that the thrill in the words becomes a feeling while going through her book.

Coming to this book which is a sequel to Yama's Lieutenant, her epic fantasy novel. This book has all the elements which had made the prequel such a huge favourite. There is adventure, magic realism, mythology, thrill and action with an increased vigour, making it double exciting to read it. Picking up from where the first book ends, we realise that Agni isn't done through Varu's diary and it continues to guide him as new adventures beckon. Story telling in parallel words continues here as well with Yama's world and its tales forming one narrative while Agni's adventures making up for the second. 

Certain revelations in this book by Yama's consort Dhumarna were something that took me aback and at the same time made me curious in anticipation as to what other revelations lie ahead. The one character  I really enjoyed reading was the Stone Witch, Nayima, the primary villain against Agni is this adventure. She has been crafted so well with her own share of conflicts and beliefs that somewhere in her battle you don't know whether you should pity her or hate her for doing what she was to Agni. That according to me is a huge compliment to the author for having created a villain which leaves a reader confused about their feelings for them. 

Agni's character keeps getting redefined in every part. There are new aspects of his which are shown to us in this part and still he remains a mystery. I have now really began to enjoy this series more because this has left me asking for more. I would recommend this book strongly for all mythological lovers. This series is something you should not be missing out at all. Irrespective of whether you have read the previous part or not this book is completely enjoyable in its own way. Though reading the whole series promises to be much more fun!
Foodie Verdict

This book is like Balushahi - having traditional roots still delicous and mouthwatering till date!
Source: Pinteres