BOOK REVIEW:The Sultanpur Chronicles – Shadowed City, Achala Upendran.

Language: English
 360 pages
Publisher: Hachette India (22 October 2018)


Darkness looms over the Sultanpuri Empire… From the freezing mountains of Firozia to the high waves that break on Karizen’s rocky cliffs; from the cities and souks of Dastakar to the djinn-filled Western Desert, the Sultanpuri Empire, a rich collection of kingdoms and states, has lived in peace for over 300 years. Formed after the end of the Human–Rakshas wars and ruled with an iron hand by the Imperial family, it has reached the pinnacle of influence and prosperity. All of this, though, has come at a price: the restriction of magic among a chosen few, and the banishment of the powerful rakshasas. But when a forbidden spell releases a rakshasi in the empire’s capital city, Sultanpur, the darkness that has been lurking below the surface comes bubbling forth, threatening to plunge the empire into chaos and envelop everything in its murderous embrace.


Humans and rakshasaas had lived in harmony and peace, traded and learned from each other for many years. Then the war had begun and rakshasaas were banished and cast back into the world they came from thus giving rise to Sultanpur Empire, ruled by the Imperial family. Magic was restricted to a select few and even talking about the rakshasaas was considered a punishable offense.

The story opens with Devank, a writer in Sultanpuri, widely read newspaper in Sultanpur, working on a piece about the Imperial Aide. He was so used to covering mundane topics that when given an opportunity he gave his best and dedicated all his time working on this particular piece. In the process he discovers a secret that could threaten the throne and bring chaos in the empire.

A princess trying to save the empire, a djinn trying to protect her family, a sister trying to track her missing brother, a rakshasi looking for revenge, a dark mage on the loose, definitely a lot is happening in this book. The picturesque views, beautiful palaces, flying carpets, enchanted lamps, reading this book is a magical journey.

The writing is simple and beautiful. The way the author describes Sultanpur makes you wish it were real. The only thing I don’t like in most books is the need for female characters to be beautiful, drop-dead gorgeous, every man’s dream, etc. That’s like a turn off for me. Other than that this novel has a lot of diverse characters. I personally loved Ismail’s character who seemed like an ideal brother/husband.

It’s a promising start to a new fantasy series.

Do I recommend it? Yes, definitely looking forward to reading the sequel.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

To buy this book, click here.
To add on Goodreads, click here.

** I received a copy of the book from Hachette India in exchange for an honest and unbiased review**



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