The Aryabhata Clan by Sudipto Das is his second mystery novel after The Ekkos Clan, and it gives off a rather Dan Brown-ish feel. Sudipto’s thorough and meticulous research on ancient Indian history coupled with facts and statistics about our history some 1500 years ago are testimony to his great storytelling techniques. The author’s ability to dive deep into the meanings, and produce coherent content from every theme is commendable.
The book has various themes, and deals with a lot of topics that look intimidating at first but eventually start making sense. There’s the Islamic fundamentals who have terrorized the nation, poisoning into the country’s media and academics headed by the mastermind Shamsur Ali, ex-professor of physics at the Dhaka University and former president of the Bangladeshi Academy of Science, who aims to bring about an apocalypse. There are 1000 year old carpets with mysterious motifs, and symbols, manuscripts that are as old as time written in the Prakriti language, with cryptic messages, and at the heart of the book is a verse composed by the mathematician himself; Aryabhata. Not just this, the author has also narrated a fine blend of Indian culture and languages.
Our protagonist, Kubha, a brave and courageous 20 year old, undergoes horrible circumstances to protect her nation from an impending disaster and for the preservation of a beautiful monument. We have her mother, Asifa, a linguistic paleontologist, her grandfather, Faraz, maker of carpets with mysterious motives who was murdered suddenly.
Although I enjoyed reading the book, the information was too much for me to grasp. I was expecting it to be more fast-paced, and quick. Since the book deals with a LOT of topics at the same time, it became dry in some parts. Given the nature of the book, I understand that the technical terms were a necessity. It is an unconventional book; but if you get the hang of it, you will enjoy the read.
The Aryabhata Clan is a richly researched book; spanning across continents, ages, and cultures which emphasis on linguistics, philosophy, Indian history and archaeology. It has a murder or maybe 3, and a protagonist you will admire.
Author: Sudipto Das
Publisher: Niyogi Books
Source: Review Copy
The Islamic State has spread its tentacles in India, penetrating stealthily into the academia, media and politics. The mastermind is Shamsur Ali, a physicist from Bangladesh. To destabilize India, he wants to create a sort of apocalypse, which the 21-year-old Kubha must prevent at any cost, come what may.
In a brazen attempt at legitimizing the demolition of one of the most prominent historical structures in India, someone – unbelievably, it could be both Hiranyagarbha Bharata, a radical Hindu outfit, and the Islamic State – resorts to a big deceit. Afsar Fareedi, a linguistic paleontologist, catches the fraud. In the melee, there are three gruesome murders, including that of her father, perhaps to eliminate all traces of a carpet which, Afsar discovers, has a lot hidden in its mysterious motifs. At the centre of all this is a verse composed by the maverick mathematician, Aryabhata, some 1,500 years ago.