‘The Mountain of Light’ by Indu Sundaresan

induMore often than not, as your expectation levels increase, the chances of getting disappointed also rise exponentially. Sad to say, the rule has been proved yet again. I could not put down the first two parts of her Taj trilogy and had jumped at the chance of getting a review copy of Indu Sundaresan’s latest novel, based on the mysterious and controversial Kohinoor – The Mountain of Light.

The story starts with Shah Shuja and his wife Wafa Begum imprisoned by Maharaja Ranjit Singh. The only thing that can gain them their freedom is the mighty Kohinoor that Wafa Begum has hidden cleverly. The story is supposed to be about how the precious diamond passes on to Ranjit Singh and finally ends up in the hands of the Queen of England. Yes, there is the Maharaja’s heir Dalip Singh, though his character’ growth happened when we are left looking elsewhere. One moment he is an eight year old, next he  is old and dying in Paris.

Maybe it was me and the time, I found the story disjointed, and was not able to understand why certain characters like Lord Auckland’s Emily and Fanny Eden, Roshni, Victoria Gouramma and similar others appeared at all. Even the Kohinoor  was like a fleeting presence rather than a connecting thread. I think what was missing was a central character that carried the story through.

Verdict – Suffice to say I was sorely disappointed. Have seen some reviews where the readers loved it. So, I guess will leave it to you whether to pick this up or not.


About wanderlustathome

Dabbling in numbers for a living while dreaming of words all the while.

Posted on November 7, 2013, in 3*, Fiction, History. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. 😦

    I have seen some wonderful reviews for this one, too. I want to give it a try, though, considering I loved her Shadow Princess.

  2. I had read some reviews and thought this would be a good read… sad that it did turn out as expected for you …

  3. I agree with you Bindu. I started off with loads of expectations. And the novel started really really well. But then my interest tapered off in between.

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