This review was originally posted at my book review blog, Nandhini’s Book Review Blog in September 2015.
The Rigveda Code is an interesting mythological fiction based on the after-effects of the Mahabharata war. The plot centers around Rikshavi, a warrior princess of the Vrij kingdom (in present-day Bihar). Thirty years post the war, Lord Krishna wishes for a new system of governance for the future of Bharatkhanda. However, instead of establishing the new system by himself, he chooses to pass the secret code to the Pandavs’ legacy which the warrior princess is destined to fulfill.
The circumstances that lead Rikshavi, since her birth and childhood, to unfold her destiny form the The Rigveda Code. What stands out throughout the book is the suspense factor. It has a gripping flow that makes it a compelling read. The narration is rather straight forward and does not divert the attention of the readers to the intricacies of anything that’s unimportant.
An epilogue describing the background of the archaeological excavation and discussion enlightens the readers about the subtle conception of The Rigveda Code which was both informative and admirable.
Post the Kurukshetra war, the Pandavs have conquered the reign in Hastinapur. Though on one side, the Pandavs have emerged successful against the Kauravs, on the other side, several men have lost their lives and several women and children have been bereaved of their men. Thirty years post the war, Lord Krishna leaves His body, leaving behind his prized possession that has the inscription of a message from the Rigveda, for Pandavs’ legacy.
The Rigveda Code though a mythological subject, deals with several powerful thoughts that can be related to our present-day society. Gender indifferences are well-captured in the plot. Being a princess, Rikshavi was not imparted with the royal education which otherwise a prince would have been provided with. However, her mother privately educates her, making her learned and a skillful archer. She emerges to be an efficient warrior princess who astonishes everyone by her capability of taking decisions pertaining to the matters of the kingdom and also by bravely leading her men in the war.
Most importantly, the political system of a country is discussed. Though the Vrij kingdom is one of the most powerful kingdoms of the Bharatkhanda, princess Rikshavi is unhappy about the state of its people. While the royal members devise battles in order to capture other kingdoms, out of their selfishness and greed, the common people of the kingdom remain disconnected from the royal men’s ambitions. In other words, princess Rikshavi wished a kingdom that measured its prosperity with the happiness of its subjects than the area covered through sheer destruction. So was Lord Krishna’s wish!
Unlike other books of this genre that narrate extensive details, author Rashmi has chosen to focus on the main theme throughout. Thus, the story moves faster at every stage. However, towards the end, it seemed like the most awaited mysteries were revealed without the expected grip. Overall, The Rigveda Code is a well-conceived plot.
Reviewed for Wordit CDE
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book as a complimentary copy from Wordit CDE in exchange for a honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
Title: The Rigveda Code
Author: Rashmi Chendvankar
Publisher: Patridge India
About the Book
600 BC…. Three Hundred years after the epochal Mahabharata War… India is still haunted by the shadows of the devastating conflict of the Kuru cousins, which almost destroyed the entire land…. The epicentre of power has now shifted to the kingdom of Vrij, situated on the northern banks of the Ganga, ruled by an ambitious king who would not stop at anything to lay his hands on the most powerful weapon of the Mahabharata age… Soaring ambitions have once again brought the ancient civilisation on the dark brink of another full-scale war….
Against this backdrop, a warrior princess is set to change the political legacy of Ancient India – guided by her destiny… and a phenomenal man, who lived three hundred years before her…
A man who is considered God today, but whose greatest contribution lies buried below layers of ancient history…
And buried below these very layers, lies the story of this warrior princess, who unravelled the mystery of His code – an eternal way to establish dharma in Bharat…
Will the princess change the way kingdoms in India are ruled? What is the destiny of Bharat?
About the Author
Rashmi is a legal professional in her early thirties. She is a commerce graduate, a law graduate and a qualified company secretary. She currently heads the legal and secretarial department of an IT company in Mumbai.
Rashmi has been an avid reader of ancient Indian history. She strongly feels that history textbooks are dry and limited versions of exciting stories, which should be excavated and brought to young readers. Her fascination with an amazing event of ancient Indian history which took place in 600 BCE and its intriguing connection with the Mahabharat war, led her to write her debut novel “The Rigveda Code”.
Rashmi stays in Mumbai with her husband, Lalit, her three year old son, Sohum, and her in-laws, Maya and Mohan.