Rise Of The Grey Prince
Author- Arka Chakrabarti
Publisher-Srishti Publishers & Distributors
My Rating- **1/2
About the Author- Arka is a 27 year old Tax Consultant-cum- Content Writer, who resorted to writing to escape life's monotony. He has also written the first book in the 'The Saga of Agni' series which precedes the book being reviewed here.
The book begins on a slow foot and as the back blurb promises, I await to be drawn into the sublime world of secrets, alongside Agni. As each page is turned I am spotting numerous typographical and grammatical errors. My heart goes out to the author who has passionately told a story. However this book desperately needs a good amount of editing and a thorough spell check all over again.
The storytelling picks up a swift pace as the story progresses and I realise there's a whole lot happening. Agni, the protagonist of the story is on a mission to reveal the real truth behind his father's sacrifice and in turn discovers some dark secrets from his past. Though a quick re-cap of the story from the previous book in the series ' The Secrets of the Dark' has been thoughtfully provided at the very beginning of this book, I still find myself struggling to catch up.
As Agni fights the daggers from his past, he has by his side two of his most trusted loyals- his Guru Sidak and Vrish, the son of Briksha-the man who played a pivotal role in his escape from death as a child.
I am great sucker for well chosen names and as the book progresses, numerous characters weave in and out of the story. I again find myself taking mental notes of the various names of people and places. I wish the author had put more thought into it while picking names for them. Or maybe I am missing a point. However that is my main reason for giving a lower rating to this book. Arkansas as a person's name, Gaya as the name of the place he lives at and Athena too in the same breath is kind of confusing.
A neatly drawn map of the land at the beginning of the book becomes an interesting element in the book.
Arka Chakrabarti's style of storytelling is smooth and fluent. There are many layers to the story and the author has made a great attempt to tell it all. Probably in a hurry to finish the take the story from one level to the next, I imagine he has restrained from launching into elaborate descriptions. I sorely missed the full and hearty backgrounds to the Colony of Hala, Nisarga, Guardian of Hydespus, Erythrean farmlands, etc. What a beautiful read that would have made. He has left a lot to my imagination. A tad bit too much for my liking.
"Which way is Nisarga?"
"North" he almost cried with a blood full of mouth.
The monster put his other hand through him and ripped the Captain into two.
The epilogue is riveting and smartly written, leaving great scope for the third book that will complete the trilogy/series but again its not without a few errors.
The author elaborates 'About the fictional land of Gaya', its ages and eras, its languages, its currency, weights and measurements, its time at the end of the book. It would have been brilliant if it was placed at the beginning of the book, following the maps.
The roughly 200 pages long story is a very quick read. You can easily finish the book in a day if you are a voracious reader. Ignore the anomalies and put your thinking hats away. A young mind will enjoy this out and out surreal world that the author has made a very good attempt at constructing and deconstructing before our eyes with his words.