The Mahabharata Secret – Christopher Doyle – Book Review


From the book blurb:

244 BC

Asoka the Great discovers an ancient and terrible secret—a secret buried deep in the Mahabharata; a secret that could destroy the world; a secret hidden away for over 2300 years…

Present Day

A retired nuclear scientist is murdered. He leaves only e-mails with clues for his nephew. He and his friends follow a trail through ciphers and 2000-year-old ruins. Pursued by powerful dark forces, caught between the secrets of the past and the intrigues of the present, can they unravel the mystery before an unspeakable horror is unleashed on the world…


Now regular readers of this blog would know that I am a huge fan of Indian mythology and it therefore goes without saying that I am a fan of the Mahabharata as well. So when a book called The Mahabharata Secret was released I was more than sure that I would catch up with reading it sooner rather than later. And when I finally managed to grab a copy of the same I devoured the book with great gusto despite the fact that I was interrupted when reading it with a road trip, a family function and pot loads of office work which ended up in me taking a good 8-9 days to finish it. But finish it, I did and enjoyed it quite a bit as well.

Written by debutant author Christopher Doyle, this book has shades of Dan Brown books in that it takes something that Indian readers are all very familiar with, the Mahabharata and Emperor Asoka and gives it quite a nice twist with the plot dealing with a deadly secret that Asoka discovers in this great epic and goes great lengths to keep it a secret for all time to come. Thus begins the plot which deals with a mysterious secretive and possibly legendary “Group of Nine” and the secret they have been asked to hide away.

Vijay, the protagonist is the nephew of the slain retired nuclear scientist who is forced to get involved with his uncle sending him three cryptic e-mails before he is killed. Along with his friend Colin, his uncle’s friend Shukla and Shukla’s daughter Radha, Vijay then sets off on a journey of unraveling the clues left behind by his uncle without even having inkling as to what he is getting into. Little do the group realize that their story would then involve the Lashkar-e-Toiba, the Intelligence Bureau and various other international diplomats and business chasing them and continuously being hot on their heels.

Criss crossing the northern parts of India where Emperor Asoka left behind his various edicts and pillars, the story follows this group of adventurers as they try to unravel the secret so zealously guarded by the Group of Nine while trying to keep away from the clutches of their various pursuers. All in all, a tightly wound storyline which keeps readers glued to the edge of their seats and prevent them from taking too many breaks during the reading sessions.

One minor complaint I have from the book is that the author could have included illustrations of the various places and specific clues that were used throughout the book. This would have given the reader a better idea of the protagonists’ ordeal through the tale. And another minor niggle I personally had was that I felt that the editing could have been a little crisper and the book itself could have probably been made a little more smaller, by around 50 pages or so. But then, in the broader picture, these are but minor things in what otherwise is a wonderfully engaging book.


Purchase the Paperback version of The Mahabharata Secret by Christopher Doyle from Amazon by clicking on this link [Link]

Purchase the Kindle version of The Mahabharata Secret by Christopher Doyle from Amazon by clicking on this link [Link]

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Name The Mahabharata Secret
Author/s Christopher Doyle
Publisher Om Books
Year published 2013
ISBN 13 9789383202317
Goodreads link Link
Flipkart link Link
Amazon link Link

13 thoughts on “The Mahabharata Secret – Christopher Doyle – Book Review

  1. I’m so gonna read this book!!! Its brilliant!
    By the way, if you like and enjoy how history is woven into plots, you should try Steve Berry. He is a brilliant author 🙂

    • @pixie, thanks a lot for pointing me out to Steve Berry and his books, I just read about him on the net and he seems an interesting enough author more so in the historical fiction genre which is something that I really like reading. But having said that, I have decided to devote most of my 2014 reading time to Indian authors, but will surely read something by Steve Berry as a break between Indian writing I guess 🙂

  2. My First blog read for the day, and my my !! am I not surprised and happy ? Yet again, you surprise me with a new book, and given the fact that I’m into mythology , thanks to thatha who kindled that interest right when I was a child, this book sure , is a good lure 😀 Well, another one added to my list 🙂 As regards Steve Berry, you must definitely read him. The Third Secret, The Amber Room, The Templar Legacy, The Venetian Betrayal….all this are Steve populars 🙂

  3. Due to my interest in mythology & good storytelling I may pick this book up. However, lately I am watching authors picking up pieces of Indian history & mythology and making them ‘Indiana Jones Syle’ fiction. After reading so many western stories based on same lines – it gets boring for me even with the integrated mythology in the story. 😛

  4. For some strange reason it reminded me of ‘The Krishna Key’ by Ashwin Sanghvi…I should try getting this one though..I love reading historical stuff coupled with fiction 🙂

    • @R’s Mom, given that this book is also from the historical fiction genre it was bound to be similar to The Krishna Key, but suffice to say that this book does not involve Krishna or his story in any way 🙂 If you like this genre, then you will like this book for sure 🙂

  5. Sounds interesting.

    Have you read The Krishna Key by Ashwin Sanghi. It is also a similar theme, but I found it a bit disappointing in places.

    • @Nish, given that The Krishna Key is also in the historical fiction genre, there were bound to be similarities, but then this book is also an interesting one, a little more formulaic and filmy if I may use the word 🙂

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