Sharath Komarraju’s books give out a rustic, village feeling. Everything the characters do is filled with an Indianness that resonates with everyone. He, yet again, sets his story in a small village where as he says, “everyone knows everyone else.” The Puppeteers of Palem starts off on a tentatively eerie note, as if it is trying to gauge whether or not the reader is going to get scared.
Mrs Funnybones is a book that makes you feel happy and light in the end but still leaves you with a weird sense of zeal and inspiration that propels you forward.
The reason I keep going back to read Sharath Komarraju’s books is his exceptional description skills. His words have a knack of transporting you into the scene almost immediately. His wonderful insights into the workings of the mind, especially a woman’s, leave me spellbound. At one place, he says, “She wondered if it was the woman inside her that made her worry so. Did she always have to have something to think about, something to fret and brood over?”
Donoor’s Curse is a story woven around the village of Donoor; a village steeped in superstition. Or so it may seem. But when Devdutt Pathak loses his godfather, who has very wisely or unwisely left him clues, Dev heads out to the village to find out why his baba was unceremoniously snatched from him. What follows is a thrilling story of adventure and revelations and shocks, woven in with Dev’s spasms of alcoholic craving.
When you read the life story of the serial killer, you begin to think: No wonder he turned into one. He was dealt a tough hand by everyone he knew! And when you think about Maithili, you think, how did someone like her become so righteous? No guilt associated? The story is, in a gist, is something we might have seen portrayed multiple times on screen in different languages, but it is so freshly put that the book turns out to be quite the thriller.
Nari came out before the Hastinapur series, but I read it well after I read The Rise of Hastinapur and appreciated how adept Sharath Komarraju is at putting word after word and weaving a story with panache. From Nari to his latest books, Sharath Komarraju has evolved in his writing tremendously.
To be frank, I had minimal knowledge about the Mahabharata before I read these two books and I’m not proud of it. The fact that a person who is not well-versed in the Epic, such as me, can now write down the characters’ names and draw family trees with panache, reflects highly on the author’s ability to skillfully penetrate any reader’s mind.