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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Author Interview : Aditya Iyengar, author of ‘A Broken Sun' (Part 1)

Aditya Iyengar
Read up, part one of the Interview with Aditya Iyengar, author of 'A Broken Sun'. It was a different kind of a book, I say this because, not only does it not have a sense of a typical war. But we all know, it was the Mahabharata war and how it went... But how far does it hold on? Truly explaining, it is the author in this interview. 

In this part, he tells us how the story first happened, the kind of research he has put into it, how he relates the lives of the five main characters in this book to the lives, today. He also tells us the challenging parts and  the fulfilling part of writing this book. There is more in the next part of this Interview, Folks... 

How did ‘A Broken Sun’ happen? What is the research that has gone into it?

A Broken Sun’ is the sequel to my book ‘The Thirteenth Day’ that told a demythologized version of the Mahabharata, set in the Iron Age - without the divine intervention, nuclear potential astras, demonic rakshasas, etc. The novel also narrated the Mahabharata from the perspective of some of its chief characters - Yudhisthira, Karna (known as Radheya in my novels), and Abhimanyu.   

CR Rajagopalachari (from Wikipedia)
‘A Broken Sun’ continued from where the first part had left off and took the story ahead. While ‘The Thirteenth Day’ dealt with the thirteenth day of the war, most notably the Chakravyuha; ‘A Broken Sun’ deals with its aftermath - Arjuna’s vengeance.

I read a few versions of the Mahabharata and other texts about Iron Age India, but KM Ganguli’s and C Rajagopalachari’s versions of the epic served as key inspirations. 

How do you think your book, ‘A Broken Sun’ is different from everyone else’s?

All retellings of the Mahabharata have their own charm. But I’m not sure if anyone has retold the Mahabharata without the mythical aspect.

How would you relate the live of the five main characters in this book to the lives today? Any similarities?

I wanted to make all the characters of the Mahabharata relatable through this series, so I’ve stripped away the mythic element from the story and I’ve focused more on their own insecurities as they fight on the battlefield.

Their challenges - sibling rivalry, parental conflict, jostling for position and power, are challenges many people face these days, and have faced since the beginning of humankind.

Any challenges you had to face, while writing this particular book?

Character development is always a challenge, and when you get it right, an unmitigated pleasure. 

But other than that, since this was the second part of a series and I had the research available, it was relatively easier to write.

What is the most fulfilling part of writing this book?

Writing itself is a very fulfilling activity to me. All books have their own challenges and highs.  

In this series, drawing out the characters of Yudhishthira and Radheya over two books and Ghatotkacha, Arjuna, Sushasana in ‘A Broken Sun’ were most satisfying.

You can Read the Review, and Buy the Book here, as well.

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