Pravin Anand’s historical fiction, Mumtaz and Taj Mahal, is one of those novels which do not take a lot of one’s time in reading but do provide all sorts of reading pleasure that a mainstream genre – romance or thriller, can deliver. I am saying this because I have read two novels in succession and let me tell you that Pravin’s book is not boring, not slow-moving and not a boring look back into the history thing. He has done his best in presenting the historical love affair between Mumtaz and Shahjahan in an imaginative way, putting the load of his imagination on the shoulders of historical facts only.
The novel runs through 275 pages and has been divided, decisively, into 3 parts and 41 chapters. Yes, the author has certainly taken his creative liberty and gave the novel a shape of history moulded into imaginative fiction which can be read with interest rather than skipped to the important parts only. Pravin Anand, the author of three books and several articles, has tried to further epitomise the monument of love into a love story.
The story of Arjumand Banu becoming Mumtaz Mahal has been further extended into an interesting rendering of historical facts into a very well-balanced fictionalised narrative so that the readers can enjoy as well as re-look at things thay might or might not have studied in their history classes. Pravin has been instrumental in inserting dialogues, managing the speed of the story, inserting breaks and adding further romanticised version and doing many other things that make a plain historical tale a novel. The character of Mumtaz has been extended and, perhaps, has been embellished with the qualities that historical books might not ascribe to her. When the emperor wants to make love to her, she tells him:
“Anybody can love his wife. But emperor and prince have lots of responsibilities of his people. They have to give most of the time of their day to the people and only a very small proportion to their family.”
While the narrative and the theme of this novel by Pravin are very simple, straightforward and easy to be digested, the readers might have little issues with the language at times. A princely love story might demand a little more sophisticated language at times… Pravin Anand’s language is simple and his motive might have been to connect with the readers who do not come from elite corridors!
And to sum up, Mumtaz and Taj Mahal by Pravin Anand is a story that is suitable for readers who love reading romantic fiction as well as those who just love reading fiction irrespective of genre. This is a simple love story made into a work of literary art which will be a good time-pass for the readers any day! You can get a copy of this book by visiting the Amazon India link below:
review by Manish for Active Reader Book Blog
Mumtaz and Taj Mahal
The book by Pravin Anand is for the readers who want to look into the history with a romantic perspective – the history of Mumtaz and Shahjahan.