BOOK 24 of 2019: "The Secret Garland " ,a translation of Andal's poems into English by Dr.Archana Venkatesan. This also happens to be book 2 of the #discoverindiareadathon ,which I have read for the #mothertongue prompt. Many of us are aware of the legend of Andal ,the venerated poetess from the deep south ,who is also worshipped as a goddess ,in the Vaishnavite tradition .There are so many stories that have come from the oral tradition and most of them have originated from her assumed birthplace ,Srivilliputthur.Modern authors have also attempted to create ,a fictionalised version of her story.I have always been interested in learning more about Andal.I,however ,wanted to learn it from someone who has really done unbiased and objective research into her poems and history . Dr.Archana Venkatesan ,has spent years ,researching the story of Andal ,spending days together in Srivilliputtur and Srirangam to understand her hagiography and the background of her poems .The result was "The Secret Garland " ,a translation of the "Tirupaavai "(30verses ) and the "Naachiyar Tirumozhi" (143 verses) poems that were written by Andal about her love for Lord Vishnu .A condensed version of the above book has been published by @harperperennial and you can see that it is really beautiful.The script on the cover is ancient Tamil❤️. The poems were beautiful .They are the cries of a woman in love pleading with a heartless lover .They reflect a vibrant ,intelligent ,and boldly sensual woman through their verses. This book is indeed a treasure that has to be collected for anyone interested to learn more about Andal.