Monday, November 26, 2012



PRICE: Rs.250
PAGES: 464
ISBN: 9789381626689
MY RATING: 3 out of 5

Interesting Plot..
Immaculate research and analysis of history, facts and myths
Intertwining of the two...

Spells ASHWIN SANGHI my friends!

Reputed as the Dan Brown of India, Ashwin brings forth another work of historical fiction titled, The Krishna Key. One must read Sanghi's work for the kind of story-telling he undertakes while weaving myths and historical figures into Fiction. With the Krishna Key, I was although, somehow disappointed, in terms of the sense of originality I had expected of it. The book-with its plot, the mode of story telling seemed a rip-off of the Da Vinci Code written by Dan Brown.

It is one thing to have similar writing styles, but this seems more than just a similarity. Sanghi, unintentionally or otherwise, seems to have been under the influence of Brown's style of writing, way too explicitly. Thus, one is disappointed when one compares The Krishna Key with Sanghi's previous works like the Chanakya's Chants.

Mythology as a genre has always fascinated me, considering I am pursuing a Masters degree in History. How a historian, Ravi Mohan Saini goes on to excavate seals pertaining to Dwarka, the mythological birth place of Krishna, an avatar of Vishnu. And like the Hindu myths suggest, Lord Vishnu takes birth into an avatar and resurrects himself to bring an end to evil and hatred, injustice and deceit. Interestingly, Ashwin Sanghi has yet again managed to acquire brilliance when it comes to intertwining myth, history and fiction.

The Krishna Key as the book title suggests looks at how there are communities of people not just in the Indian subcontinent but elsewhere too, who are looking for the Kalki avatar of Krishna who is supposed to take birth in the Kalyug. However, that is where trouble for Sanghi begins. Till about a point as the book advances, the story is gripping and each chapter hooks the reader on to the plot. The characters are however, too many and are at places required but at many other places, are simply placed into chaotic junctures. In between them, yet again, the driver twist in the story (read it to know! I am not telling you :D) was surprising and brought me back to the story.

The point is, research and the plot balanced, provides a wonderful conduit of expression for the readers but like they say... too much of anything makes them undesirable. Similar, too many details- geographical, temporal and the story at large; all three are left unbalanced and stuffed leaving the reader in a daze as to how to make sense of so many things that go hand in hand, though it may be a personal opinion because I like to read stories which blend in geography and time but with subtlety and not something that is so outright-ly put or elaborated upon. Though I loved it how he manages to connect Dwarka, Vrindawan, Kalibangan and Agra so constructively- seems as good as real!

However, the whole suspense of the Krishna mystery loses its ground completely by the time the plot reaches its climax and it is indeed disappointing to be so much intrigued to only get a bland ending. The ending that was so much anticipated, ends on a very ordinary and dull note. Being a Sanghi text, I somehow expected much more in terms of a sophisticated end to an excellent course of trails and suspense.

Nonetheless, it is not to take away any credits from Ashwin Sanghi who is by no doubts, an excellent story teller and I am a fan of his. Krishna Key is definitely not his career-best but definitely a great read amongst the plethora of Indian fiction that is available at present. Also, I really wish that he loses the Dan Brown-touch that has influenced his writing a little too much and which reflects very glaringly in the Krishna Key. All in all, he is a personal favorite for the way he handles twists in the plot and how the female character always manages to be a tease in the schema of the plot.

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