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Thursday, October 29, 2015

Book Review : 'Empire of the Moghul : Traitors in the Shadows' by Alex Rutherford

'Empire of the Moghul : Traitors in the Shadows', the sixth in this series, is probably the only book, which actually stood alone, and I do not mean that in a good way. Of course, it does start from the part where Shahjahan is already in prison, and Aurangazeb has taken over the Peacock Throne, ably supported by his sister, Roshanara. But it really does not have the same kind of grip, which its earlier parts had.

As we move ahead, we are caught in Aurangazeb’s bloodied war with his brothers, and him taking on the kingdom. He finds himself isolated, and depending on Roshanara at first and Jahaanara, towards the end only. The interesting part is the one with Shivaji, as his imprisonment and eventually his escape along with his son, that make for good reading. 

The account is caught between the way Aurangazeb rules his nation, he seems to be battling the demons of all the people he had gotten killed, and also his decision to base everything on religion, despite Jahanaara opposing his views.

The second half of the story seems like a war, between himself, and his son Akbar and the indecision between Muazzam and Zebunissa and himself, too. Opposing views rule the roost, as Aurangazeb attempts to keep making his views supreme. His only support seems to be Udipuri Mahal, his wife who again is trying to raise support enough for her own son, Kam Baksh.

This book, despite its attempts failed to grab my interest as the earlier ones had. There is a zeal, which could have been brought in, considering Aurangazeb’s views and the people who had to suffer due to them. This book definitely is not at the bar, where the earlier ones are at. It probably ran off before I could catch up with it...

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