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Book: Aru Shah and the City of Gold read online free PDF | Aru Shah and the City of gold PDF Weebly
Type: Graphic Novel
Aru Shah and her sisters–including one who also claims to be the Sleeper’s daughter–must find their mentors Hanuman and Urvashi in Lanka, the city of gold, before war breaks out between the devas and asuras.
Aru has just made a wish on the tree of wishes, but she can’t remember what it was. She’s pretty sure she didn’t wish for a new sister, one who looks strangely familiar and claims to be the Sleeper’s daughter, like her.
Aru also isn’t sure she still wants to fight on behalf of the devas in the war against the Sleeper and his demon army. The gods have been too devious up to now. Case in point: Kubera, ruler of the city of gold, promises to give the Pandavas two powerful weapons, but only if they win his trials. If they lose, they won’t stand a chance against the Sleeper’s troops, which will soon march on Lanka to take over the Otherworld.
Aru’s biggest question, though, is why every adult she has loved and trusted so far has failed her. Will she come to peace with what they’ve done before she has to wage the battle of her life?
Thank you to Netgalley for providing me with an eARC of this book!
4.5/5 stars; This book really packed a punch. It was great all throughout and kept me very entertained. This book really gives the reader what they want and doesn’t hold back. Aru Shah is a teenage girl who has discovered she is a Pandava. In this book, she is trying to stop an army after hearing a prophecy about herself. She has her sisters by her side and meets another one along the way.
The pacing was really good and didn’t drag at all. It was kept consistent and it wasn’t too slow or fast at any given point.
The characters are amazing. This author really writes the best characters and doesn’t stick to the standard image of a book’s characters. This book portrays the characters as their own and it’s amazing to see them work through all the difficulties throughout the book. The evolution of each personality is amazing and they are written as real people rather than as cardboard.
In the end, the plot pieced together very nicely, though I’m sad to say that I figured out what would happen in the end earlier on. I think this generally wouldn’t be too predictable, but I am quite familiar with Hindu Mythology myself.
“Gold is a beautiful but treacherous thing. We keepers know all too well the lengths humans have gone to possess it.”
Aru Shah and the City of Gold was one of those books that I was not expecting in the least.
It surprised and made me more emotional than I expected at the same time that I fell more in love with these characters.
Seeing as how things ended in The Three of Wishes the book started really intensely and it never really let go. Pulling many twists and taking a journey that was surprisingly unexpected and fresh. It definitely made a great job of preparing us for the end of it all.
One thing I do have to say, I am still ambivalent towards that ending.
“Someone once told me that just because you can’t have the life you wanted, you shouldn’t give up and fade out of existence. That’s how we become living ghosts – by never moving on.”
Let’s start from the beginning.
When I started the book I had no expectations over anything because things were left too ambiguous to form much of an opinion. So, I was pleased and excited when things went as differently as possible from anything I could have dreamt.
Sure, I wasn’t astonished or anything seeing as it fitted the themes of the story all too well, but I was happy with it. Truly. All the possibilities it opened and the character arcs that it enabled were suddenly right in front of me and the sheer potential of it all made me drunk.
It is very fascinating.
At the same time, it followed the “script” so well that it added a sense of familiarity that was needed in the more emotional moments settling me back on my skin and at the same time amplifying the tension and anxiety all that much more.
“After all, Brynne Tvarika Lakshmi Balamuralikrishna Rao knew lots of stuff. She knew how to whip up a perfect soufflé, knew a dozen ways to knock someone unconscious, and (All right, fine!) she knew how to play the harp, and she was pretty great at it. Plus, it was very soothing… But she also knew something else in that second. She knew she was strong enough to be weak.”
The character arcs were, without a shadow of a doubt, my favorite thing of the whole book.
Chokshi has a great way of capturing all this turmoil of difficult and contradictory emotions and transmitting them as I was the one feeling them as well as making them perfectly easy to decipher. And they just kept hitting me in the chest.
After three books things have come to be in a state of disarray and turmoil, understandably, that affects very directly our characters, and the baggage they are carrying was as varied as their personalities and so well dealt with that I couldn’t help but love each one more.
Okay, sure, I do love them all but, I’ll admit, Aru and Brynne’s particular arcs are the ones that most stole my breath and made my ribs squeeze hard. They were so beautifully explained and the lessons learnt from them felt like a natural development instead than something forced, which is great.
“I am always my own favorite. That works best for me. Maybe you should try it. Just be your own favorite person and then no one else’s opinion really matters.”
All of that is not to say that the actual plot wasn’t great, because it was.
One of the things that, admittedly, has been tiring me a bit about middle grade books was the very strictly-set form of the story. So far, Chokshi had been following well so I thought, before starting the book, that I could easily guess where things were going based on that… I could not. Though still retaining, very much so, the essence and much of the format of the genre The City of Gold had enough divergences that I didn’t felt bored or like I had already seen the story before.
I really liked the change of pace.
The adventures and quests were as fun as ever and very interesting to see… as well as weird; which was amazing and relaxing in its own way.
“Sometimes there are no easy answer. All we can do is try our best to perform our duty to ourselves and the people we care about and hope everything will work out. And when something comes to a bad end, we need to ask ourselves: Is this really the end, or just an ugly middle?”
Alright, the time has come to talk about the one thing that I still cannot wrap my head around: why that particular plot point that has been driving the story from the beginning was solved like it was.
Since the moment I first read it I’ve been confused and, dare I say, somewhat disappointed. I still wonder the reasoning behind making it so.
On the one hand, I get it, it is, objectively, an interesting twist and it makes perfect sense between the bounds of the stories’ world. It’s not like it’s illogical or something. Had it been done any differently I may even have loved it. But it wasn’t, and I don’t.
My confusion stems from the fact that it doesn’t have the level of payoff that I was expecting that plot thread to have.
It has been made abundantly clear since the beginning that this whole plot was A PRETTY BIG FREAKING THING. That it was supposed to make break our hearts and shock us to no end. I’ve been dreading it and theorizing over it for years now. Only for it to be solved in such a manner that a) I didn’t care and b) none of my theories could have ever, not in a million years, been true because I just had nothing to go on.
So, I find myself asking: What was even the point?
I feel both disappointed and cheated, even though, as earlier stated, the move works perfectly between the bounds of the story.
“I’ve looked to the past to remember happiness for so many years that I’d forgotten how to look to the future to find happiness anew.”
At the end of the day, I find myself thinking that if it wasn’t for that ending I would have been quite in love with this book. I enjoyed it, maybe even more than I thought I would, and that is still a reality but that feeling of having rooted for something for so long to have no payoff whatsoever is a little too bitter on my tongue to just let it pass.