Yama’s Lieutenant by Anuja Chandramouli

​This might be a highly inappropriate analogy, but to me Yama’s Lieutenant atleast in parts, felt like Devil May Cry with Hindu pantheon. Though there is no Virgil for our Dante, he is equipped with two four-eyed hounds from hell, Chandrama and Suryama, for Ebony and Ivory.

The main story follows the adventures of Agni Prakash who has to ‘Odd Thomas’ his way off Arakshas, and keep the balance of both world. The initial real world take easily faded out after protagonist’s recruit, and even sub narratives started becoming dark. I don’t really go well with blood and gore, and this book’s intricately woven hell and hatred did unsettle me. The real mythology is juxtaposed with the main story line through manuscript of protagonist’s sister. I enjoyed the peeling onion treatment, where author kept both the characters as well as the readers under the incentive of a gradually unraveling secret.

For a book by the name Yama’s Lieutenant, I found both Yama and his Lieutenant strangely under developed. It might as well be my usual aversion for the ‘preordained chosen one’ narrative. I really did care for, and enjoyed the little chapters involving Agni and Varu, but the celestial twins, Yama and Yami, were more of an annoyance. Another issue I had was the excessive baggage side characters wore, along with their not so easy to remember mythological names. The far greater allegorical purpose the names serve could be lost for an outside reader.

Transcending mythology to new age, in my opinion, involves plenty of material to work with, but conveying the stories in their might requires a talented story teller, and this author kinda nails it.

I would like to thank the author for the review copy.

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