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A Time to Burnish Paperback – 25 Jul 2016
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About the Author
Radhika Nathan believes in the miracle of words and the rain. Her favorite pastimes include reading, listening to podcasts, and gazing at monsoon clouds. Writing forces her to think and re-examine a point of view or a preconceived notion. Post her debut novel The Mute Anklet, a historical romance with a dash of mystery, Radhika examines the intersection of art, romance, and mystery in A Time To Burnish.
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― Shashi Tharoor
India is a poor country having a rich cultural heritage. We are the oldest civilization. The diversity in cultures and rulers across the ages and width and breadth of the country the legacy is huge. We have temples, caves, palaces, idols and much much more in terms of historical legacy. This book is story of one such idol. Nataraja the dancing Shiva’s idol of Chola empire times is at the centre of the book.
There are three main characters in the book. Josh and Tom are brothers and Vidya is a friend of Tom’s. Tom is affable and makes fired easily. He is studious and devotes time to ancient artefacts. In an unfortunate accident he became wheelchair bound. Vidya is his online friend. They know each other very well and admire mutually. Josh is a computer expert and a contrast to Tom. Still both brothers love each other dearly. A bronze Nataraja idol is stolen from India and smuggled into London. Tom thinks he might be an accessory in crime. As he cannot move much he asks Josh to go to Chennai and uncover the mystery. He requests Vidya to help Josh. Initially Josh find Vidya unbearable but later on they come close. Will they be able to solve the mystery?
India is a vast country and ASI does not have the resources even to protect the heritage forget about restoring it. The antiques fetch high price in international market and the theft are common. The book has some insights into the rich history. Vidya and Josh trace the origin to a non-descript village of Tamil Nadu.
The book has a promising premise but it became slow and meandering after initial chapters. Nothing much happened until it was too late. The chemistry of Vidya and Josh was tedious and uninspiring. Then Tom keep on mentioning about a detective who gives him information. What and how and when is unanswered? Also, why didn’t he send this detective to India alone or with Josh when he was so resourceful. The story was stuck and I was hoping a fast pace thriller a la Clive Cussler, Dan Brown or Steve Barry. But this disappointed me in that sense.
Keeping in view the pros and cons 3/ 5 stars.
Author really didn’t get into the details of invasion or the Chola history. And I believe She tried to kick off the reader’s curiosity to know further more. That’s what happened to me.
Did the thrill and the enthusiasm was held throughout the book? Well it went off the hook at many places with sudden romantic portions of Vidya and Josh. This book is not a complete thriller adventure. It just travels as Ïs It or Is It not” bumper ride throughout the lane. But the end really surprised me because I didn’t expect that kind.
The characters were beautifully formulated. Two culturally different people meets but still the story proclaimed the respect for each other. The relationship between every character in this book is noteworthy.
The narration could have been set fast to keep up the adventure. It lacked the rhythm . It didn’t give me an Adrenalin rush even at the important places.The narration of past events in between the story was well and good which will make sense at the end.
Overall “Time To Burnish” is a decent thriller set on the Chola dynasty which accounts the facts about antique thefts with an easy going and simple narration all together.
Tom Winslow, who works in a museum is deeply interested in culture and history of India..He receives a Nataraja idol and is intrigued by its connection to Chola period..As he is confined to a wheel chair, he asks his brother Josh Winslow to explore the idol’s origin..Josh doesn’t care much about old idol and reluctantly visits India to help his brother..Tom also asks Vidya Thyagarajan, his friend from Chennai to help Josh..Whether Josh and Vidya find out the true origin of the idol or not, makes this story an interesting read!!
Author has explained the feelings of Josh in a beautiful manner…The way he feels when he first lands in Chennai and the experiences which transform his beliefs in the end are penned clearly by the Author..Further, the characterization of Vidya, is also good and her relationship with her father is interesting..Josh’s love for his brother in spite of many differences is refreshing to read..Romance between Josh and Vidya has been depicted well by the author..
This book is a mixture of love and mystery in background of art and history..It is interesting and engaging to read!!!
My rating for this book is 4/5.
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