Asura Tale of The Vanquished

  • by Anand Neelakantan
  • Narrated by Sanket Mhatre
  • 21 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In this best-seller, Neelakantan tries to break the age old tradition where history is always narrated by the victors.
Asura: Tale of the Vanquished dares to narrate the tale of the Asura people. Blending mythology, religion, and history, the audiobook narrates the tale from Ravana and Bhadra's perspective.
The book talks about how the Asura community is more liberal than the orthodox Deva clan, which was highly biased. It also attacks the evil practices of the Brahmin caste.
From the tale of Mahabali, Vamana, and Sita's Agni-Pareeksha, to Jatayu's meeting with Ravana, the author reveals the many human emotions behind these stories and logically presents a new perspective for the listeners.
How wrong was Ravana to challenge the mighty gods for his daughter's sake? Was he evil for deciding to lead life in his own terms? Was he wrong for freeing the people from the caste-cased Deva reign? The author takes the listeners on an enthralling journey and poses many such complex questions. Bhadra is a creative character who gives voice to the common man, who is lost amidst the villains and heroes.
The author has been appreciated for his eye for detail, which gives life to his work. The right blend of good language and interesting twists keeps the audiobook engaging.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

One the best stories ever!

Anand is a phenomenal writer and perhaps one of the most captivating writers I have ever read.
The phrases, prose, plots have been woven beautifully with not a moment of drag. Simpler explanations than those mentioned in the Ramayana of how the events might have actually transpired are just fabulously drawn and sound believable. He should write more. He is way ahead of Amish Tripathi in his command on language.

Sanket, the narrator, is incredibly talented. I had never expected it honestly but if the novel sounded good to the ears it was due to the amazing characterisation by Sanket. If there is any award for Narrators then Sanket has earned it without doubt. Initially I was amused with dramatics but later it became an integral part of this experience. Mind blowing performance and deep understanding of characters. Keep it up!

The story is timeless and well known but this novel uses the other part of the story i.e. Of the defeated and it does it convincingly well. Let me warn you that the novel can be extremely disturbing if you cannot suspend your faith and belief and let the writer have a chance to say his part. The characterisation is beautiful and mesmerising and very deeply developed rather than the simple ideas we have of these timeless heroes.
You will hate, loathe, ridicule, laugh and cry for Ravana and Bhadra. You might question the divinity of many established heroes once you start calling a spade a spade. The parallels with our current society has been injected in the book and the Aryan Invasion Theory along with the British Raj and the Modern Western Liberalism has been used to provide the political undertones to the novel. Casteism has been rightly denounced but a lot of Brahman blaming is there too. Atheistic movements of the past have been covered too and a denouncement of elitist capitalism and a yearning for true freedom is the primary theme. One cannot help but feel that the writer wanted to show the Western countries particularly USA like the modern Asura empire with emphasis on individual liberty but a crumbling empire against a ruthless but disciplined and rigid rag tag bunch of warriors.

As Bhadra said, "I wanted to go away from this world of Ramas and Ravanas". Perhaps the natural dharma is the best way.
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- Rishi Tiwari

Sanket has literally given life to all characters

Anand has written a wonderful book and sanket have life to all the characters. Awesome will be an understatement for this book. It was an out-of-the-world experience listening to this book.
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- Arun Venkatraman

Book Details

  • Release Date: 02-06-2015
  • Publisher: READO