Review of Panchatheertha:1 by Rajiv Mittal.

Title: Panchatheertha: Part1

Author: Rajiv Mittal.

Format: Kindle edition.

Book length: 350 pages.

The Panchatheertha (five pilgrimages) is an outrageously funny, satirical revision of sections 1 & 2 of The Panchatantra, the masterpiece Vishnu Sharma wrote between 1200 BCE to 300 CE. The stories are primarily about statecraft and full of wisdom and morals. Despite that, youngsters found them very entertaining. In the tales, animals act and speak on behalf of human beings. The series begins with a parent story that unfolds story after story; each strung to the other by a narrator.
Vishnu Sharma’s reincarnation Shiva Varma has, in this redraft, revived the ancient Indian tradition of parampara (continuation of knowledge from one guru to the next). In his excitement, he forgot the younger age group of his shishyas (students). His characters now try to explain the motives for their actions, also express their feelings; something The Panchatantra had cleverly avoided doing. Within its pages, animals are still made to think and behave like human beings but have not otherwise been harmed in any way.
The Panchatheertha was considered lost but the discovery of two altered strategies ‘The Loss of Friends’ and ‘Gaining Friends’ should create hope within the large and growing community that has had considerable success with the first and complete failure with the second. Those wanting to meet Shiva Varma are hereby informed he dislikes economists, preferring astrology. He is in samadhi (seclusion / deep meditation) and not in hiding.
There are many intriguing characters not known to Vishnu Sharma in this adaptation; from a sex consultant plying his trade in the locality Ajilundpenodhoka in district Makasam… to a devadasi (courtesan) wanting to conduct the temple prayers because she is bored… to Sage Narada Muni !!
Bibliophiles are urged to read the original Panchatantra (which Shiva Varma did consider including as an appendix), to truly appreciate the extent to which history gets distorted when it is made to explain itself. Historically, the appendix has been viewed as a vestigial organ with no real function. This is why Shiva Varma chose not to include it… or so he claims.


The Panchatheertha by Rajiv Mittal is one level above his previous book.

The title itself attracted me towards reading this book and also the length is an interesting prospect.

Talking about the stories the book has basically 5 stories based on different situations in life, since I have never read panchtantra but I just loved the plot of each and every story.

Along with the fictional characters we can relate to each and every thing being said to our real lives, the book is perfect combination of crispness and research together.
This isn’t any mythological book but good things being put Infront in a joyful, understanding and humorous manner.

Narration is free flowing with easy and proper language and characters are very carefully handled which is tough to find in lengthy books.

Rating and judging a cover shouldn’t be ideal for every book especially if it is read in Kindle version, so I feel it’s fine for the book. Some punch lines by author are just terrific so you won’t feel the length as boring or unnecessary, though this book demands time but is equally a treat to read.

So overall, it is an entertaining and knowledgeable read which will teach you some lessons but with all the fun time. I am waiting for part 2 of Panchatheertha as the book has flavour and juice which is hardly found in recent novels so you shouldn’t miss reading this one.


I will rate it ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Link to buy the book:

Panchatheertha by Rajiv Mittal

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