Epics have love stories. Some gave birth to a nation while some stories are written on water. Today at your adda, we have the ‘Epic Love Stories’ by Ashok Banker. Read on.
We have 10 sets of 2 books each of ‘Epic Love Stories’ up for review!
Overview of the book:
Shakuntala and Dushyanta - The love story that gave birth to a nation
the classic tale of Shakuntala and dushyanta has enthralled indians for millennia. the subject of the great Sanskrit play by kalidasa and influencer of a thousand love stories in films, television shows and novels, this almost-tragedy captures the unusual pairing of a rustic sage’s daughter and the arrogant young king who falls passionately in love with her – only to forget her once he returns to his kingdom. or has he truly forgotten? As much a drama with a twist in its tale as a romance of manners, the great romance of Shakuntala and dushyanta remains an enduring love story as well as a fascinating portrait of a long-lost age. now retold in Ashok’s inimitable epic style, this short novella also forms a part of the larger epic Mahabharata Series.
About the Book 2
Ganga and Shantanu – A love story written on water
A king of a powerful race in an ancient age falls in love with a woman. What he does not realize is that she is no ordinary woman; she is the incarnation of the great Mother-Goddess, River Ganga herself. Compelled to take human form for one lifetime as the result of a curse, she must
commit a series of terrible unspeakable acts in order to free herself from the curse and return to her true state. The curse forbids her from confiding in her human husband, who is unable to comprehend why she must act so cruelly. Finally, her awful tasks completed, she returns to the natural state of water whence she came. But she cannot abandon her human lover without one final gift: the gift of a son, and a most unusual son at that. This story, and the events it sets into motion, set the stage for the great war and clan-conflict at the centre of the great epic story-cycle of the Mahabharata. But in itself, it is also a beautiful and heart-breaking, yet ultimately inspiring tale of love beyond boundaries and forms. Retold by Ashok in his Mahabharata Series, this stolen tale of love and loss will break your heart, even as it reveals a facet of love rarely witnessed by mortal eyes.
About Book 3
Satyavati and Shantanu – A love story made possible by a son’s sacrifice
The figure of Bhishma looms large in the world’s largest epic, the Mahabharata. Young Devavrata, son of King Shantanu and the late Queen Ganga, has never forgotten his mother’s final words urging him to serve his father and ensure his happiness. After years of pitiful grieving, when Shantanu’s damaged heart finally reawakens and begins to stir with love for another woman, Devavrata is the happiest of all. When the king’s love for the fisher chief’s daughter Satyavati blooms into full-blown passion, not only Devavrata but the entire kingdom is thrilled: finally their beloved king will find happiness again. But an unrelenting condition placed by the fisher chief makes it nigh impossible for Shantanu to seal the match. When Devavrata realizes that his father is willing to sacrifice his last chance at happiness for him, he himself steps forward to offer a terrible vow and sacrifice, one that will change not only his life but the course of history itself. Plucked like a fragrant blossom from the pages of his own Mahabharata Series, Ashok presents this heart-moving story of love and sacrifice in his own inimitable style.
About Book 4
Amba and Bhishma – A love story that was never meant to be
The image of Bhishma, grand old patriarch of the Puru dynasty in the Mahabharata, is one of self-sacrifice, wisdom, and gravitas. But long before he became that majestic white-bearded patriarch, he was a robust young man, as virile and earthy as anyone else. And in that youth, he once came close to loving and being loved by a woman. Close enough to breaking his terrible vow of lifelong celibacy? Perhaps, perhaps not. This rarely-told tale narrates the story of young Bhishma and the princess Amba, the circumstances that led to their meeting and the brief intense time they spent together. That their love story had no happy ending is a foregone conclusion: it did not even come close to consummation. But that itself is the beauty of this tale of a bygone age and culture. A love story about two unfortunate people, beautiful and proud and god-like in their own way, and the romance that flowered briefly between them, never to be nurtured into its full flourish. Another precious trinket stolen from the pages of Ashok’s Mahabharata Series.
About the Book 5
Devayani, Sharmishtha and Yayati – A love triangle that changed a dynasty
One of the least-known, yet most poignant love stories, is the tale of Devayani, daughter of Shukracharya, Guru of the Asuras, and Kacha son of Brihaspati, Guru of the Devas. The Devas or Gods of the Vedic age were eternal enemies of the Asuras or Demonic races. How could the son of the preceptor of the Gods possibly hope to find love and happiness with the daughter of the preceptor of the Demons? Yet love flowers in the unlikeliest places and so Kacha and Devayani began to dream the impossible dream. Their love was doomed to end tragically but the how and wherefore of the tragedy is what makes their story so unforgettable. But the story doesn’t end there. Instead, it segues (after a gap of a few years) into another: the love triangle of Devayani, her former friend Sharmishtha, and the man they both loved, Yayati. After a quarrel with her friend Sharmishtha, Devayani used her father’s influence and power to force her friend Sharmishtha to live out the rest of her life as Devayani’s personal maidservant. One day, Devayani found herself trapped at the bottom of a well deep in the forest. Soon after, a stranger wandering through the forest, chanced across her.. On learning that he was Yayati, king of a powerful nation, she blackmailed him into a relationship. But unknown to Devayani, Yayati fell in love with Sharmishtha, resulting in a love triangle that presages the plots of countless present-day soap operas. Read on to see how Ashok’s storytelling shines brilliant light upon this gem pried loose from the mosaic of his own Mahabharata Series.
Know the author:
Ashok Kumar Banker’s internationally acclaimed epic retellings are published in 56 countries, several hundred reprint editions, with over 1.4 million copies currently in print. His Ramayana Series is arguably the most popular English-language retelling of the ancient Sanskrit epic. His Krishna Coriolis is hugely popular among young readers. Ashok is of mixed-race and nationality, a non-Hindu, and neither religious nor spiritual. He is one of the few living Indian authors included in The Picador Book of Modern Indian Writing and The Vintage Anthology of Indian Literature. His writing is used as a teaching aid in management and educational courses worldwide. His e-book venture akbebooks.com is India’s first best-selling e-bookstore and e-publisher. Ashok is 48 years old and lives with his family in Mumbai. Over 41,000 readers have corresponded with him at his website ashokbanker.com
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