The Ekkos Clan– Book Club Review

 
The Ekkos Clan 
by 
Sudipto Das
 

What attracted me towards this book was its root in time of Partition of India!

When India was partitioned, there was a lot of bloodshed, lot of scars. It was a very black period of communal and political riots. My grandparents were one of the survivors of those riots. They came from Pakistani Punjab hidden in the drums and tempos. I grew up hearing how partition affected their life, so I was aware about one part of it. But I never thought about Bangladesh-Calcutta partition. Bangladesh which suffered twice—once when it became East Pakistan and secondly when it became an independent country in itself. Twice the pain, twice the fights—getting borne is a messy project.

Moreover this books promised history of Aryans and Rig Veda, which I can’t get enough of.

The Blurb
“The Ekkos Clan” is the story of Kratu’s search for the killers of his family, his own roots and the mystery behind his grandmother’s stories.
It’s the fascinating account of Kubha and the basketful of folklore she inherited from her ancestors. The eventful lives of Kubha and her family span a hundred years and encompass turbulent phases of Indian history. The family saga unfurls gradually, along with Kubha’s stories, through the three main characters – Kratu Sen, a grad student at Stanford, Kratu’s best friend Tista Dasgupta, and Afsar Fareedi, a linguistic Afsar hears about Kubha’s stories from Kratu in a casual conversation, but she figures  that these stories are not meant to be mere bed time tales – they contain rich linguistic fossils and layers of histories.
In a bizarre incident Kratu miraculously survives an attempt on his life. His sister and uncle had not been so lucky. Were these murders acts of revenge, or a larger ideological conflict connected to Kubha’s stories which conceal perilous secrets that should be suppressed?

Afsar, Kratu and Tista travel across continents to unravel the mystery of Kubha’s roots and the origin of her stories.

At a different level, the novel subtly delves into the origin of one of the oldest civilizations of the world and the first book written by mankind.

 
Buy @
 

What I Liked:

  • Partition tales: The author did justice in explaining us the pain of partition. Through various characters, backflashes, and the elders’ stories—it carried that nostalgia of uprooting one’s home and settling in some unknown place for safety. It depicts the horrors committed during that time quite well.
  • Innovative take on history: I’ll say that although the portion of the story felt a bit incredible, they were able to capture my interest. I was amazed at the interpretation of Vedas and how the simple stories were depicted. I’ve myself wondered many times about how the stories in our vedas and granthas originated.

What I disliked:

  • Too many characters: There are quite a lot of characters in the story. I felt so lost in the initial chapters that I had to resort to making a tree of characters to keep track of them. And I’m talking about the first and second chapter in itself.
  • History Lessons: There were sections in the story which felt like a lesson of history textbook. I was so tempted to skip those sections.

Final Thoughts

The book might feel like “Da Vinci Code” because like Dan Brown’s different take on Christianity, this book focuses on Hinduism. But don’t set the bars too high and try reading the book with a clean slate and you will surely enjoy it. It’s quite different kind of story.

Meet the Author

 

Sudipto was born in Calcutta to a family which fled Bangladesh during the partition riots of 1947. He grew up listening horrid stories of the partition, something which he has used extensively in his debut novel The Ekkos Clan. He completed his engineering from IIT Kharagpur in 1996. He lives in Bangalore.
You can stalk him @


                  
           Wikipedia Media Mentions 


“A promising debut in the growing realm of modern Indian fiction” – Jug Suraiya 
“An Indian thriller inspired by Dan Brown & Harrison Ford!… fast-paced thriller, replete with murder and miraculous escapes” – Telegraph 
“If you are a history buff and a thriller aficionado, then [it] might just be the book for you” – The Hindu 
“A tale of the Indian civilization and culture… takes you on a roller coaster ride” – The New Indian Express 
“An interesting read for an afternoon… One feisty woman’s partition story” – Bangalore Mirror 
“Should be read for its sheer aspiration and the intelligent handling of historical material” – The Sunday Guardian 
“Is essentially a mystery novel, but is grounded in a substantial base of research and exploration into our past” – newsyaps.com

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