The Untold Story of Arundhati and The Black Emperor… The Sluttish Time by Rashmi Singh
[pullquote align="left"]Author: Rashmi Singh
Publisher: Pigeon Books[/pullquote]
The novel revolves around not just a single protagonist, but a specific historical setting of the Chalukyan Dynasty. Pulkasein II as the mighty ruler, called the Black Emperor for his cunning and conniving ways is feared by all. In his kingdom lives the beautiful budding dancer Arundhati and secretly both hold a special place in each other’s hearts. The emperor excels at conquering great wars, mighty kings and armies but knows not the matters of the heart. He instead makes an enemy for life with the kingdom of Mahendravarman as he commits the greatest treachery of history. To make his victory more profound, his name more feared, Pulkasein II takes the king’s lady love Sivagami. Crushing someone else’s life and insulting the institution of love and lovers, he is cursed by a dancer. The Untold Story of Arundhati and The Black Emperor … The Sluttish Time enchantingly narrates the story with beautiful yet poisonous vine like twists and turns.
Why we liked the book
Taking you back into time and aptly narrating the story, the author has used wisely interspersed Sanskrit shlokas within the narration. That coupled with the very descriptive detailing of the emperor’s ways of life, the way his subjects and his generals conversed with him really lands the reader in the sixth century AD. Perhaps as you reach the final pages and put down the book, it will take some time to come back to the 21st century.
Another aspect of the book that really strikes a chord is the depiction of how liberated and skilled women were in medieval India. Unlike the general perception of how dancers, artists and women in general were treated by the royal class, the human emotions and actions behind everything has been showcased. That they too were humans and prone to every mistake any human can make has been justified, elaborated and exemplified.
The review will be incomplete without mentioning about the extremely eye catchy cover page. The cover is a painting of depiction of Arundhati by the author Rashmi Singh. A beautiful oil painting which mesmerizes you and lets you look at the mysterious dancer that became the boon and bane of the life of the mightiest emperor of Western Chalukyan dynasty, Pulkasein II.
Love is an enigma for many and for each lover and beloved holds a different meaning. Rashmi Singh’s novel, takes some very interesting facts from the rich history of India and its rulers, builds a beautiful and hypnotizing story upon these elements and what we have in the end is a richly made wine of the finest quality; intoxicating and heady. While reading one may truly feel transported to an era long forgotten and passion long lost. A beautifully narrated epic saga of love, lies, deception, power and passion; The Untold Story of Arundhati and The Black Emperor … The Sluttish Time by Rashmi Singh is enchanting and addictive.
Plot and Pace: 4.6/5
Writing Style: 4.5/5
Official Synopsis of The Untold Story of Arundhati and The Black Emperor… The Sluttish Time
“What a Slut Time Is…She Screws Everyone”~John Green
This is the story of sluttish play of time which loves to stay with rich, famous and powerful and deserts the weak and poor! A magical, mystical, passionate and sinful love story which played havoc with history-a story which was buried in the banks of Krishna River or somewhere amongst the mountainous valley of the Vindhyas in 7th century A.D. This tale is (610A.D-643A.D.) of Western Chalukya dynasty, his untamed passion for wars and his unusual desire for the forgotten enigmatic beauty, Arundhati!
The story also traverses the immortal love life of Pulkasein II’s contemporary, Narsimhavarman I of Pallava dynasty and his beloved Sivagami.
“But you shall shine more bright in these contents
than unswept stone besmear’d with sluttish time.”
About the Author – Rashmi Singh
The first woman from Bihar to write English fiction- Rashmi Singh has done her initial schooling from Notre Dame Academy, Patna and High School from Loreto Convent, Ranchi. She has done her graduation from Patna Women’s College (Avila Convent). A post graduate in Political Science from Vinaba Bhave University, Rashmi, who is currently based in Faridabad has also a Master’s degree in Business Administration.
More books by Rashmi Singh
Author’s Note about “The Untold Story of Arundhati and The Black Emperor- The Sluttish Time”
Indian historical fictions have been mostly revolving around more known characters like Krishna, Draupadi, Arjun, Bheema, Amrapali, Karna, Rama, Ashoka, and Akbar etc. but this unbelievable read will take the readers to a whirlwind of events, which unfold the layers of one of the most sensual tales of untold wars, passion and love.
Mighty rulers of Southern India have not been able to find deserved places in Indian Literature. Few like Narsimhavarman I, though have managed, but people of Northern India and all over the world almost have no knowledge about them. Globally, India is known for ‘Taj Mahal’, ‘Buddha, Mahaveera’ or as the land of snake charmers!
Indian history is vast and rich. It is not only formed of few renowned kings, and epics like Mahabharata and Ramayana. To seek out the glory of the yesteryear rulers of Southern India, we have to dive into the crinkly yellow pages of history books or the ruins of magnificent palatial forts and know about the ‘grandeur of these mighty dooms