Sunday, 1 March 2015

Book Review: Shattered Dreams (Ramayana: The Game of Life #2)

Book: Shattered Dreams (Ramayana: The Game of Life #2)
Author: Shubha Vilas
Publisher: Jaico
Price: 350 INR
Pages: 387
Genre: Religion and Philosophy/ Self-help

Blurb: Shattered Dreams is the sequel to the national bestseller, Rise of the Sun Prince, in the new spiritual and motivational series Ramayana - The Game of Life. Twelve joyful years have passed in Ayodhya since the wedding of Rama and Sita at the end of Book 1.

Now, in Shattered Dreams, Shubha Vilas narrates the riveting drama of Rama’s exile. Through tales of Rama’s unwavering and enigmatic persona, the book teaches us how to handle reversals positively; through Bharata’s actions, it teaches us to handle temptation; and through Sita’s courage, to explore beyond our comfort zone. This complicated family drama provides deep insights on how human relationships work and how they fail.

With Valmiki’s Ramayana as its guiding light, Shattered Dreams deftly entwines poetic beauty from the Kamba Ramayana and Ramacharitramanas, as well as folk philosophy from the Loka Pramana tales, to demonstrate how the ancient epic holds immediate relevance to modern life. Experience the ancient saga of the Ramayana like never before.

My Rating: 4.5/5

My Review: 

Shattered Dreams is the second book in the spiritual and motivational series, Ramayana. This book starts from the juncture when Dasaratha decides to coronate Rama and ends at the point where Rama, Lakshmana and Sita head towards Dandakaranya after spending the first year of their exile in the mighty Chitrakoot mountain.

Despite knowing the story of Ramayana by heart, what hooked me to the book is its beautiful and lucid narration. The dialogues are exceptionally beautiful. Some scenes are so beautifully described that it fills you up with reverence and wonder. The scene where Bharata pleads Rama to go back to the kingdom of Ayodhya touched the innermost chords of my heart. The dialogues that were exchanged between the righteous Rama and the faithful Bharata would not fail to mesmerize the readers. I have always admired the character of Bharata in Ramayana and this book further enhanced my admiration. As told by a Guha, a friend of Rama to Bharata in the book : 
"Blessed are you, Bharata! You are one in a million! In fact, you are the only one. No one can be like you. What Rama did is not as big as what you plan to do. He abandoned the kingdom because he was asked to do so. In order to remain an obedient son to His father and stay compliant with the rules of Dharma, he took to a life of austerities. It is easy to forsake tasty food taken off your plate, but it is extremely difficult to resist the temptation of something that is available within your legal reach"

The emotional turmoil faced by each character was desribed aptly. The words that Rama said to Bharata when he compelled him to return to Ayodhya will provoke the readers to think deeper:

"Human beings are pawns at the hands of higher powers. My forest life, too is destined by Higher powers, Daiva (the hands of God). As far as death of our Father is concerned, it is the act of Time, kala kritha. When destiny and time are not in Our hands, what purpose does blaming anyone serve? People are just instruments of destiny and time."

The beautiful bond between Rama and Sita is definitely one of the best things in this book. The delicate moments, dialogues and emotions shared between the couple don't fail to amaze the readers. Similarly, Lakshmana's devotion towards Rama is perfectly depicted in the book. There is a chapter in the book which shows the egoistic nature of Ravana. The antagonist of the epic will be playing a significant role in the next book of the series, so the introduction of Ravana was rightly done in this book. 

Throughout the book, there are several mythological stories sprinkled on it that makes it more interesting to read especially the stories about Anasuya Devi. The book ends with Rama, Sita and Lakhsmana leaving the hut of Atri muni and Anayasuya Devi. Anasuya gives a subtle warning to Sita about her fate. 

What makes this book a beautiful self-help book is the footnotes in each page which contains beautiful nuggets of wisdom. I can surely go back to this book again and again for the wisdom it contains. 

Highly recommended to people who love to read books on mythology, philosophy and spirituality.

You can buy the book from here

This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books!


  1. Sounds interesting :D

  2. RAMAYANA EXPLAINED ...................



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