While you eagerly flipped through the pages of the book and was very keen to finish it because it was definitely affecting your work, you didn’t know that this was what you would face next. As soon as you flip the last page & finish reading it, you feel the sharp urge to pick up the next book in the series.

rise of kali by anand neelakantan
rise of kali – the second book in the epic of kaurava clan series
Image provided by author

This kind of situation isn’t a pleasant one in case you don’t own the next book in the series and that’s what happened to me. Although I had been lucky for I started reading the Ajaya series after the second book was released, I didn’t have the second book just when I finished the book one.

After eagerly waiting for the second book to arrive, I immediately started reading the twisted but interesting re-telling of the greatest epic in Indian history – Mahabharata.

And here’s how the story begins…

The second book began with one of the most important events that lead to a bloody war between heirs of the Kuru clan – stripping off Draupadi in front of an assembly of the royal family. And then the story continues with everything I and most of the Indians already know.

The mere thought of knowing everything about the story makes you disinterested in reading the book but that’s definitely not the case with this book written by Anand Neelakantan. The writer has carefully carved his niche by presenting the most famous stories prevalent in the country in a thought challenging manner.

As I have finished reading the second book – Rise of Kali, I’m going to share my experience with the book and also suggest whether investing your time in the book two of ajaya series is a good idea or not.

About book1

Before beginning with book two, I must tell you that I thoroughly enjoyed the first book – roll of the dice. The book was effortlessly narrated and the main character in the book managed to win my heart – Suyodhana. There were many more characters that gained my sympathy and many that gained my hatred. The book was amazing according to me.

Book 2: Rise of Kali

It isn’t really necessary to explain the plot of the second book as we all know what happened in Mahabharata. This book has even more planning and plotting than before. A large part of the book is about the eighteen day long war that was fought. And there are quite a lot of new characters introduced in this book as the story continues.

Review of Rise of Kali

As compared to book 1 …. 

If I have to compare this book with the first one, I would say first book was completely satisfying while a few parts of this book would fetch a critical opinion from my side.

The book is quite focused on presenting Suyodhana as a “good guy”. While this was smoothly done in the first book, this book seemed to have a few loopholes.

In an attempt to present the Pandava side bad, the author failed to stay biased to the characters at a lot of places. For example, when Draupadi was stripped, I couldn’t feel the pain and disgust at the moment while it was there when another character in the book is stripped off her dignity.

While showing how Pandavas approached everything with treachery, it seemed like author was trying to keep the Kauravas’ mistakes hidden. But that’s something I felt while reading the rise of kali. It might be different with different people.


The narration of the book is smooth and well presented otherwise. After a sort of unsatisfying beginning, I was definitely pulled deeper into the book for the events that followed next. They kept me glued to this large book which certainly takes a lot of attention.

I couldn’t stop thinking about the book or mentioning it in random conversations with my friends and family. That’s a sign of a good book.

In the mid, the book slowed down a bit and it took a bit of effort to continue the book but OMG! When the war begins… the book fetches just one expression – wow. It gets way more exciting than I had expected. That particular part in the book introduces you to a variety of emotions… How you feel when a character you loved is killed, how you feel when you read the strategy devised by both the sides, how you feel when someone wins by treachery… It is all so amazing. You can see the bonding between different characters, hatred between different characters.. It is amazing.

Overall opinion…

Truthfully speaking, I feel proud of myself for having picked up this book. It is a good book which definitely challenge your beliefs and makes you question on different events that happened in this epic and your opinion about different characters. It definitely gives you a fresh perspective on quite a lot of things.

My overall opinion about this book is that it is quite a good book and would be loved by an open minded versatile reader. I bet you would enjoy the war part to the fullest. Do grab this book and once you finish reading this book, come back over here and discuss about the book with me. I really want to have long discussions over this book.

My ratings: 3.5/5


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