The Braveheart of Mithila

The Braveheart of Mithila
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Highlights

She wields stick like a pro, an expert in using small knives, skilled archer, an efficient general and a great administrator. In a nut shell, she is a badass. Finally, we get Sita we deserve. 

Amish manages a feat in his new book of Ramachandra series, which even feminist writers failed to do; he gave Sita an identity

She wields stick like a pro, an expert in using small knives, skilled archer, an efficient general and a great administrator. In a nut shell, she is a badass. Finally, we get Sita we deserve.

Amish Tripathi’s Sita is a much needed interpretation. Unlike Devadutt Patnaik’s ‘Sita’, which was Ramayana told from Sita’s perspective, Amish’s ‘Sita: Warrior of Mithila’ talks about the princess’ origin story; from her adoption to abduction.

While feminist interpretations like Volga’s ‘The Liberation of Sita’ talks about Sita finding empowerment within the circumstances, Amish makes her a hero, a warrior and one, who not only shapes her destiny but that of nation as well.

She is as skilled and as efficient as Ram if not more. As Sage Vashista says in the book, she has fiery temper and is scarily smart. Amish manages to give Sita her own identity and Ram, who doesn’t appear until last quarter is her partner and equal.

The book chronicles Sita’s journey from a girl, who offends her uncle, as he threatens her mother to a pupil in gurukul; the one who learns martial arts along with academics to a 16-year-old, who hesitantly takes charge as prime minister of Mithila, after her mother dies; and who successfully transforms the kingdom from economic decline to a surplus state.

Amish based his story on ‘Adbutha Ramayanam’ and Gond version of Ramayan – ‘Ramayani’. Like his first book in Ramachandra series ‘The Scion of Ikshwaku’, the author manages to include current issues in the narrative.

He included an incident akin to Nirbhaya case in the first book and made it instrumental in changing the fortunes of Ram. In this book, he used Jallikattu to introduce Vaali.

Though the first book was tad underwhelming, this book is a page turner. Fast paced and a highly visual narrative keeps the reader hooked to the book.

However, Amish makes the lead pair a mere pawns or they seem so in the larger game played by two groups Malayaputras led by Vishwamitra and Vayuputras led by Vashista, who are entrusted with the task of protecting the nation.

The author deliberately left many questions unanswered and several episodes open ended, which makes us wait and wonder how soon the next book of the series will release.

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