The Forest of Stories

 This is not an epic fantasy. It’s not a sci-fi rendition. It’s not a futuristic version. If you’re expecting any of those things, you’re going to be disappointed. This is simply the Mahabharata of Krishna Dweipayana Vyasa retold by one man. This is what the introduction says of The Forest of Stories by Ashok Banker, India’s epic storyteller.  🙂 This is the first book, of the 18-volume Mahabharata Series! Woah! There is so much to tell about Banker and his book. But we will let the synopsis of the book to do the talking. 😉 Read below.

The Forest of Stories

10 copies of this epic book to be given away.

Overview of the Book

The world’s greatest epic – from India’s epic storyteller, author of the internationally acclaimed Ramayana and Krishna Coriolis series

The Forest of Stories, Book One in Ashok Banker’s long awaited ‘MBA’ Series, takes us deep into the haunted jungle of Naimisha-van. Here, at the ashram of Kulapati Shaunaka, a dusty traveller arrives with sad tidings: Maharishi Krishna Dweipayana Vyasa has passed on. Yet the great collator of the Vedas has left behind a fabulous legacy, the epic narrative poem called Maha Bharata. At the urging of the ashramites, the traveller Suta begins to recite the great composition, starting with the incredible creation myths and tales of gods and giants, snake-mothers and gargantuan eagles. And as the night wears on and the tale grows darker, he senses the presence of countless ghostly beings in the shadows beyond the flickering oil-lamps, the restless souls of the many millions butchered in the climactic war that ended the great tale itself, gathering now to hear the epic saga that led eventually to their destruction and the decimation of the Kuru Bharata race.Based on the original Sanskrit shlokas with vivid action-packed narration and descriptions, this sampoorn Mahabharata retelling brings to life all the magic and majesty, wonders and violence of the world’s greatest epic – from the master of Indian epics.

Know the Author

Ashok Kumar Banker’s internationally acclaimed Ramayana Series® has been hailed by critics as a ‘milestone’ (India Today) and a ‘magnificently rendered labour of love’ (Outlook). It is arguably the most popular English-language retelling of the ancient Sanskrit epic. His work has been published in 56 countries, a dozen languages, several hundred reprint editions with over 1.1 million copies of his books currently in print.

With the Ramayana Series®, Banker embarked on a massively ambitious publishing project he calls the Epic India Library. Returning to the roots of the great ancient tales that have inspired countless authors and filmmakers, Banker sought to reclaim the original stories through a series of multi-volume retellings as well as original fiction and non-fiction. The Krishna Coriolis series, of which the first three books have been published, and the Mahabharata Series (of which this book is the first in an 18-volume series) are part of this project..

Ashok Banker is credited with having heralded the resurgence of public interest in Indian mythology, for being the author of the first Indian TV series in English and co-writer of the first Malaysian TV series in English, and author of the first Indian e-book, among other firsts. He is one of the few living Indian authors whose contribution to Indian literature is acknowledged in The Picador Book of Modern Indian Writing and The Vintage Anthology of Indian Literature.

Ashok is 48 years old and lives with his family in Mumbai. One of the most interactive Indian authors, he is always accessible to his readers via his blog and official website at – over 35,000 have corresponded with him to date.

You can also read more about Ashok Banker in this two part interview that we had with him. Part 1, Part 2. 

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