Sunday, October 30, 2011

A New Book Project

As the first three books of the Aryavarta chronicles move into the publication process (Watch out for Govinda early next year), I've begun work on a new book, which is not part of the Chronicles. Of course, my love for mytho-history won't let me wander too far from my favourite characters and stories, but this time, am trying something that blends mytho-history with a contemporary setting. In terms of style too, am trying a first-person narrative - A lot of fun to write, considering my protagonist is a rather snide, sarcastic kind of guy. He's a dash complex too, which makes it interesting to be inside his head, and tell a story from his point of view.

And what is this book all about? Well, here goes: the blurb is below:


“Some say immortality is a curse, that when you’ve been alive long enough, you’ll begin to long for death. The loneliness gets to you. Death becomes the only hope, and the only purpose in life is to find a way to die. And so begins the saga of lonely vampires, and werewolves mourning their lost humanity, tales of undead creatures grieving over lost human virtue and human need. But, there’s a problem with those stories.
They’re told by mortals.
I am not like them. I don’t believe in magic. And of course, I am immortal.”

Professor Bharadvaj is more than just another whisky-loving, gun-toting historian for hire. Behind the cynical academic hides a man from another age, a man who is neither accursed, nor has super-powers. But a man who cannot die. He is Asvatthama, scholar, warrior and King; a man who has endured in common lore as a myth, a faraway, magical notion. Born in the Epic Ages of India, the time of the Vedas, of mystic seers and ancient Empires, Asvatthama lived amongst those whom the present reveres as Gods. He fought in a great war and survived - Immortal.

Now, millennia later, as he stands poised to follow his centuries-old routine of casting aside one mortal personality for another, Asvatthama – or his alter identity, Professor Bharadvaj, is dragged into a search for a historical artifact unlike any other. Together with his young assistant Manohar, and the beguiling but tough client, Maya Jervois, he sets out to look for the Keystone – an ancient power hidden in the mysteries of alchemy that are far, far older than he is. Chased by dangerous mercenaries and unknown assassins, the trio travel the length and breadth of India in what becomes more than just a search for the Stone. It is a puzzle left by the ancients, along with horrible traps. Traps that even immortals must fear, for ironically, the puzzle is one that only the fearless can solve.

As the Professor and his colleagues race from New Delhi to the western coast; from the old city of Kashi, to the mysterious hills of the South, the legendary home of the Siddhas – ancient alchemists, and finally into the heart of the Himalayas in Tibet, Asvatthama must make another kind of journey – into his own mind, his fears, and his unquenchable love of life itself, to discover the true meaning of immortality.

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