DNF: Saraswati's Intelligence

by Vamsee Juluri

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I was actually looking forward to reading this book and hate myself for DNFing it. I wouldn’t say it is a bad one but just wasn’t for me.

It is the story of Hanuman while he is an adolescent.

He is a smart boy and everyone loves him.

I had a few problems with the narration. Right from the beginning, there is a sense of danger in the book. There is something which is not right from the beginning but it never comes around to completely unveiling itself. It was fine until after some time I got annoyed at the sieved information I was picking up from the book. There are multiple mentions of ‘balance’ in the book. I never understood what it meant. I was trying to decipher it from the structure of the sentence. The fact that it was sprinkled generously over the pages did not help much.

Cover: DNF: Saraswati's Intelligence

I must say the sentences were beautiful. The story built the suspense but it felt like I was supposed to come with a basic understanding of the myth which I didn’t and thus the book felt alien. Everything felt absurd in the book. The alienation of Hanuman because he saved his brother, the politics even the characters in the book.

I read 100 pages, which is about a third of the book and then decided that there was no point moving further. Either the book was not meant for me or the narration wasn’t clear enough or I am not smart enough for the book, which is quite possible. With my limited knowledge on mythology in fiction, I will not go ahead and say that the book is not worth it. It is just not for me.

Veena Choudhary

An avid reader and history fanatic.

Mumbai, MH merakipost.com