26 May, 2016

#BookReview :: The Disguised Prince (Raksha Duology, #1) by Shankar M.M.

"You are neither a good warrior nor a good leader." These words haunt him. 

Raksha, a young prince, decides to prove himself and seeks a path not knowing where it will lead him to. However, his destiny has other plans. On the journey, his life evolves into an epic quest filled with magic and intrigue, which he never dreamt of. 

Set in a fantasy land Riloriya, this water kingdom is not the same as it was five hundred years ago and its history is mystery now. 

What will be his part in unfolding an ancient mystery? What did he lose? What did he gain?

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Welcome to the fantastical world of Riloriya as set up by Author Shankar. It is a completely different world yet it has some similarities to our world that cannot be ignored. For instance the expectation of a parent from their child and it is the same in Riloriya as it is here. It is that expectation that pushes Raksha to prove himself beyond any reproach and establish himself as the best warrior in all lands. The Disguised Prince is mostly about Raksha’s journey to become a warrior and winning an annual tournament. But at the same time there are secrets at every turn in the kingdom and the story of a Prince trying to prove himself may turn out to be something else on the whole. Or Not. You have to read the book to find out. 

The blurb of the story doesn’t giveaway much and that is what got me curious about the book in the first place. That and the fact that the author has already planned this to be a duology - don’t you think that duologies are rare?

The author has done a really good job with the world building. He has given us enough information to make us feel that we now know the world. At the same time he has managed to create an air of mystery about it to keep us intrigued enough to pick up the next book. But it is his characterization that caught my interest. There is a wide cast in the book and no, not all of them are perfectly done. But there are few characters that I did like quite a bit and want to know more about them. Raksha is one of them. He is protagonist you can empathize with at the very beginning. Most of us have felt the burden of our parents’ expectations and the need to prove our worth not only to them but to the rest of the world as well. As such, it is pretty easy to like him from the beginning. He is not perfect and his flawed character is another reason to like him because it made him feel more real. To see him fumble and grow as person was the best part of the book and there is still more space for him to grow. The plot is simple enough and till now the author hasn’t introduced any complex aspect to it.

It was the language and the narration style of the author that took away a bit from the reading experience. I would suggest the author to work on polishing his narration style and look for tighter editing for the next instalment. The book is not that big yet it took me quite some time to finish because it took me time to settle in with the inexperienced tone of narrative. But this is the author’s debut book and I hope he will grow with his protagonist, Raksha.

Review Copy received from the Author

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