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Ramayana: The Game of Life - Book 3 - Stolen Hope Paperback – 2016

4.5 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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  • Ramayana: The Game of Life - Book 3 - Stolen Hope
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Product description

New Enlarged Edition Sri Ramana Maharshi (1879-1950) was still in his teens when he attained enlightenment through a remarkable experience, as if undergoing death of the physical body, while remaining in full consciousness. He left home for the sacred hill of Arunachala where he taught the purest form of Advaita Vedanta (non-duality) through the simple discipline of self-inquiry. His teaching, his principal instruction to all his devotes was always to meditate on the question "Who am I?" In this book Arthur Osborne gives an account of the life and teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi. It has a special relevance to our age with its outlines of a religion based on the Indian scriptures which is essentially spiritual, without ceasing to be rational and ethical.

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Product details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Jaico Publishing House; 1 edition (2016)
  • ISBN-10: 8184958242
  • ISBN-13: 978-8184958249
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 14 x 1.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #6,937 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
First of all this is not the first time I am reading this author Shubha vilas, I have already read his first two books among Ramayana series i.e. Rise of sun prince and Shattered dreams you will find both the review links here in this blog, and now about this book stolen hope is the third book among the Ramayana series. If you have not read the first two books then it doesn’t matter, here in this book author have provided short description about both the books in introductory chapter.


The story begins with Rama, Sita and Laxhman walks through the forest of Dandakaranya. Rama meets many sages through this forest and hearing the agony suffered by sages Rama vows to destroy every demon that have harassed this sages. All three moves to the south where they meet sage Agastya who live in Janathana, here they encounter with Surpanakha who proposes Rama to marry her, Rama does some mischief and diverts her to Laxhmana, Surpanakha doesn’t cop her rejection and attacks them, Laxhmana chops her nose and ears. Angry with her insult she goes to his brother Ravana to attack this brother and abduct his beautiful wife Sita. Here Ravana travel to Janathana and abducts sita in his pushpak viman to his palace. Then Rama and Laxhmana begins their search of stolen hope (to search sita) were they meet Shabari. Shabari guides them to monkey like human Sugriva. The book ends here and keeps the readers desperate for the fourth part. Now I know that the fourth part will be of Hanuman so I am also desperate to read the forth book.

Now the writing style of the author is excellent, footnotes in every page are a plus point of this book which are ample ingredient for motivation and which transforms your way of thinking.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Practically every Hindu is familiar with the Ramayana and knows there are various versions. Every new version is definitely a labor of love and dedication. Shubha Vilas, an Engineering and Law graduate, involved with the Hare Rama movement, has also brought out the Ramayana in multiple volumes. The only volume I have read so far is Ramayana: The Game of Life - Book 3 - Stolen Hope. There is much to learn and relearn from each version and each time we read the Ramayana, and there are many descriptions which are captivating.
BUT, the printing is on translucent paper, so the printing on the other side shows through; paper with greater opacity would have been better. The font is small, but the line spacing is 1.5. Larger font and single spacing would make it more readable, especially for senior citizens, who are most likely to buy this book.
The USP of this version is the author's footnotes, which are comments/ lessons (just like personal comments during a lecture). But many of these comments are in abstruse language, or use archaic language, so the point of having these comments is greatly diluted, e.g. The lowest nature of a leader becomes the highest hallmark of a follower. The footnotes are wonderful, but some could be simplified (e.g. True friendship shines when the happiness-sun sets could be written as True friendship shines when the sun of happiness sets).
There is also a plethora of errors, spelling mistakes, absence of quotation marks and wrong usage of words (e.g. principle wives instead of principal wives), which make the book difficult to read, leave alone enjoy, appreciate, recommend or gift. The language in the main story includes (only on P. 110-111):
…and her mission as is; ...winnowing fan-like sharp nails…; … guise-shifting abilities.; My preponderances are non-superseded…
I thank Shubha Vilas for providing me a free hard copy of Ramayana: The Game of Life - Book 3 - Stolen Hope for an unbiased review.
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Format: Paperback
Shubha Vilas series on Ramayana is one such honest attempt which is aptly termed as ‘The Game of Life’ as it presents to the reader the glorious story of Rama’s journey enriched in teachings and lessons for an ideal life. This is surely a commendable attempt by the author to present the Ramayana to the readers in the form which principally draws inference from Valmiki Ramayana and also incorporates the flavors from Kamba Ramayana and Tulsidas’s Ramcharitmanas. Besides just narrating the story and events of the Ramayana as is, the author also presents the incidental narrations and anecdotes of the characters which are (perhaps) not presented in the original Ramayana. These add to the overall charm of reading in addition to increasing the knowledge base about the tales behind the text and its characters. The depth in the literature only reflects the grand research which has gone into the book.

Special word of appreciation to the author for the manner in which he has developed each of the character in the book. Nowhere it appear that Rama or Sita or even Ravana who are main characters of Ramayana are over shadowing other smaller characters of the story. Even tinier characters like Maaricha or the sages in the forest get their due voice in the story. Even Lakshmana gets space to voice his emotions in penultimate chapter of the book wherein he shares his thoughts on Sita’s abduction and Rama’s outburst at him. The command on the language assumes great importance especially in the re-telling of mythological text. The craft is beautiful and poetic. Some of the most beautiful and poignant junctures of the book includes Bharata’s suffering in absence of Rama, Rama’s lament for Sita, their moments of togetherness in the forests, the selfless service of Lakshmana to his brother etc.
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