Book – American Maharajah
Author: Mark Stephen Levy
Publisher: White Falcon Publishing
Year – 2018
Review by – Ranjit
American Maharajah is a novel by Mark Stephen Levy which has been published in 2018. This is a unique work of fiction by an American author which keeps Indian readers involved with the imagination and elements very close to reality because the things mentioned in the novel are not strangers to the Indian population. Rebirth, reincarnation, king, prince, marriage promises, cult, rituals, hired pregnancy and so on… Mark has made use of these concepts very well in his second novel and he has certainly impressed the readers, including myself. I could barely keep the novel aside while reading it – it’s not that his novel is a jaw-dropping thriller or a heartbeat stopper mystery – just because his novel is simple in nature and satisfying in manner!
The novel begins with an abrupt sequence of events and we come to know our lead character named Ravi Shankar – a man in early thirties who is brought up and born in the USA (as per his understanding). We also get to know his girlfriend who does not take more than 2-3 chapters before breaking up with Ravi and fade out. Ravi reaches India on a vocational journey and the novel takes the real turn.
Mark’s regular visits to India and his knowledge about Indianness have made their marks in the novel very deeply. We get to know different tourist spots via Ravi’s journey and we also get to know several Hindi phrases used by Mark in the novel. He has done his best to make this American Maharajah look perfectly Indian. You only can decide his success extent!
The connection of Ravi to a royal Rajasthani family in India and his being the possible reincarnation of Amar, the deceased son of king Suraj Pershad, are the forces which drive the novel to a distance. More than that, the introduction of Amar’s beloved, Aishani, brings a new charm to the novel and her character has been described beautifully and in vivid colours by the author.
Ravi’s confusion is at the centre of the novel and his facts, that he finds out in due course of time, are virtually connected and have no extra twists which keep the readers fairly connected to the plot of the novel – which, in turn, is fairly straightforward and simply designed. Even as a serious and critical reader employed by Book Reviews Lab to read American Maharajah, I really liked the simplicity employed in the novel.
For the readers who are interested in spiritual experiences, myths and legends, American Maharajah will be a very good novel because it connects the dots and makes things look true to a large extent. I would recommend the novel to all other readers who are interested in reading contemporary fiction… do read Mark’s work and judge for yourself.
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review by Ranjit