Chanakya's Chant - Review

Author: Ashwin Sanghi
Publisher: Westland Limited
Publication Year: 2010
Purchase At: Chanakya's Chant

The year is 340 BC. A Brahmin youth vows to avenge the gruesome murder of his father. History remembers him as a brilliant strategist Chanakya. With his cold, calculating and cruelmind, he became the most powerful political strategist of India and receded into the shadows to write his Arthashastra, the science of wealth.

Two and a half millennia later, history repeats itself in the Avatar of Pandit Gangasagar Mishra who repeats what Chanakya did, evolves as a kingmaker in the modern politics. Only this time it is not the king, it is the queen. But will the cunning pandit who preys on gluttony, venality and sexual eccentricity be able to create a history like Chanakya did?

I know that Chanakya’s Chant is touted as a best seller and one of the finest political thriller and there are a lot of Ashwin Sanghi fans out there. But I will disagree with most of the reviews. For me, the book was below average.

I have read his first book The Rozabal Line and I can see stark similarity in the narration which means, it is again dull. Thankfully, we only have to concentrate on two stories in Chanakya’s Chant. One of them takes place in 340 BC and focuses on the renowned strategist Chanakya. The other one takes place in the modern Indian society. But here is the catch, everything happens in a similar fashion in the present story as well.

That is the first point I would like to point against Chanakya’s Chant. It is interesting in the beginning and I enjoyed it but soon you feel like you are reading everything twice. All the incidences occur in a similar fashion. The only difference is that we have modern politics in one hand and the names are different. It gets repetitive and dull and at a certain point I was interested in just the older events.

Secondly, the present story in Chanakya’s Chant was too cheesy with no surprises or counter tactics. Everything happens as planned. Also in the middle of the book, there were a whole lot of things going on and it involved a lot of political stuff and that is where I started skipping pages. I usually don’t act like this but I had to. This is the first time I read and finished another novel (what purpose did i serve in your life) before finishing this one completely. I was so bored of it.

But I will again appreciate Ashwin Sanghi for the research he did for writing Chanakya’s Chant. Only if the narration was good…

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Kathy Combs
January 7, 2014 at 7:13 AM delete

Thanks for the review. I am not really into political thrillers so thanks to your advice...I will pass on this one. ♥


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