Title: Aru Shah and the End of Time
Author: Roshani Chokshi
Age group: 5th grade and above
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Synopsis: “Best-selling author Rick Riordan introduces this adventure by Roshani Chokshi about twelve-year-old Aru Shah, who has a tendency to stretch the truth in order to fit in at school. While her classmates are jetting off to family vacations in exotic locales, she’ll be spending her autumn break at home, in the Museum of Ancient Indian Art and Culture, waiting for her mom to return from her latest archeological trip. Is it any wonder that Aru makes up stories about being royalty, traveling to Paris, and having a chauffeur?
One day, three schoolmates show up at Aru’s doorstep to catch her in a lie. They don’t believe her claim that the museum’s Lamp of Bharata is cursed, and they dare Aru to prove it. Just a quick light, Aru thinks. Then she can get herself out of this mess and never ever fib again. But lighting the lamp has dire consequences. She unwittingly frees the Sleeper, an ancient demon whose duty it is to awaken the God of Destruction. Her classmates and beloved mother are frozen in time, and it’s up to Aru to save them. The only way to stop the demon is to find the reincarnations of the five legendary Pandava brothers, protagonists of the Hindu epic poem, the Mahabharata, and journey through the Kingdom of Death. But how is one girl in Spider-Man pajamas supposed to do all that?”(Amazon.com).
I may have been a little late to reading this book since the next one is coming out in just a few months, but I really wanted to share how amazing and exciting this series is!
First, it’s important I mention one of my favorite authors ever (along with most everyone else I know): Rick Riordan! I first began reading his books six years ago now and have devotedly been following his writing since. I am fairly certain I have read every single one of his books for children (although not all the little companions and guides). Maybe about a year ago he announced something called Rick Riordan Presents, which is a collaboration with his publishing company to publish and advertise other children’s books about mythology. As an avid fan, I was thrilled and terribly excited for the first one to hit the shelves.
You’ve probably guessed it–this first book was Aru Shah and The End of Time.
Now the first of many praises I have to offer this novel is a simple one; The plot is what I would call a classic adventure plot. Please know that by classic I do not mean old-fashioned, boring, predictable, or anything of the sort. In fact, I mean that it is one of those stories that completely hooks you start to finish and also involves the main character doing several things:
1 The character makes some sort of stupid mistake (probably to do with a prophecy) while somehow being instantly lovable
2 The character finds out secrets about their past that shock them and delight the reader
3 The character adventures through mystical or foreign places with at least one sidekick, escaping from many conflicts unharmed
4 The character defeats a great evil (at least for the time being)
Sound familiar? I should hope so! This is a greatly used plot idea that never fails to be enchanting, but in this instance the amazing characters made it even more so.
The characters in this book, especially Aru and Mini, were wonderful characters to begin with. They both have very different lives that are colorfully described. However, throughout the book as their relationship developed, they began to change each other in wonderful ways. Seeing such great character development was such a happy experience for me during this book and simply made me fall deeper in love with the story.
I cannot wait to read the second installment next April and also read other books from Rick Riordan Presents! If you haven’t already read this book, then I highly recommend that you do!
Happy Reading 2018–Let’s fly together!