The City of Devi by Manil Suri : A Book Review

Book Cover: The City of Devi
Book Cover: The City of Devi

‘The City of  Devi’ completes Manil Suri’s trilogy alongside ‘Age of Shiva’ and ‘Death of Vishnu’. Set in the backdrop of Mumbai, the plot revolves around a young woman, Sarita. Sarita single -handedly embarks upon a dangerous quest in search of her missing husband.

Her journey becomes a whirlwind adventure for her and the readers. With unbelievable twists and turns, she manages to uncover the secrets of her husband’s sudden disappearance. However, she is shocked by his past that she discovers throughout the journey in the form of flashback sub -plots.

Interestingly, as the name suggests, ‘The City of  Devi’, there lies a parallel plot which focuses on the miraculous discovery of a ‘Devi’ (Godwoman). This so -called Devi is known to have unimaginable powers and fulfils the wishes of all her devotees. This plot highlights the blind faith on superstitions and religious discoveries that exists in the society. In fact, it triggers a chain of events like blind believers travelling from all over the globe to seek the blessings of the Devi or scientifically manufactured miracles in order to maintain the continuity of the phenomenon. Also, one cannot overlook the special role that communal politics plays in the scene. It would be intersting to see what would happen when Sarita’s practical mind crosses path with the power hungry and blind believers of the so-called ‘Devi’.

A read of Suri’s latest book would completely shatter the traditional conceptualisation of ‘love’, ‘romance’, ‘passion’ and ‘sex’. Thus, one should read the book only after one lets go of any preconceived notion about love, passion and relationships. Perhaps no other writer has dealt with the emerging patterns of changing relationships in the society, the way Manil Suri has done in his latest.

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