Book Review: Trade winds to Meluhha

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Vasant DavéSet in Mesopotamia & the Indus Valley during the Bronze Age, this story revolves around 3 main characters. We have Samasin. He began his journey as a stable boy & ends up being accused of a murder he did not commit. Anu has had an awful life thus far & although she has a man anxious to marry her, she is too bent on revenge to realize her good fortune. Velli is young, but the man interested in her is merely manipulating her into marriage because she detests him, but he knows a secret she wishes to hide.

I stress that these three are the main characters due to the fact that there are so many characters in this book that is mind-boggling trying to keep track. Each new character comes with its own tale. Each has an assignment of sorts. The flow of information that the reader must keep track of is distracting & quite impossible. I found myself back-tracking quite frequently to determine, again, which character is being focused on now. There were simply too many agendas. It was appreciated that the author put a list of the characters in the beginning; however, it didn’t do much good. The supporting cast was too overwhelming.

Within the first five chapters, I still had not determined where the title fit into this novel While the location, Meluhha, is mentioned many times, it is brief & in passing. For instance, when Samasin is accused of murder, the victim is from Meluhha. There is also mention of people passing to & from there, but no concrete definition to hang your hat on.

Tidbits of historic information peppered throughout the chapters are lovely. The author definitely is a student of archaeology. It would have been less puzzling though, if these pieces fit into the text. Predominantly, they did not. It made the text uncomfortable & created confusion as to where he was going with these sentences.

The author’s intelligence is obvious. He has done his historical homework. This fact is undisputable. However, I’d have much preferred the book to be only about one of the three main characters, especially Anu. He could have produced three separate novels, each with an amazing plot. But, I got the impression that he tried to cram too much into one book. This turned into an unfortunate maze of characters and their agendas. I cannot highly recommend this which pains me to say. But I’d rate it 1 of 5 stars.

To draw your own conclusion on this book, which I always encourage folks to do, it was published by Vasantrai P. Davé and received from Smashwords.

I received one copy of the book mentioned above for free in the hope that I would review it. I was under no obligation to provide a positive review and am in no way affiliated with the author or publisher. Please see the disclosure policy for more information.
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  1. Stephanie Verhaegen says:

    Oooh this looks interesting! I love anything histrical like. :)

  2. Sarah Bibi Setar says:

    I tend to favour books written by Asian authors due to their exotic settings and customs. However, if there’s one pet peeve I have- it’s complicated plot lines, with too many characters. I often find that even a list of character names at the front or back of a book doesn’t really help. I’m currently reading A Clash of Kings by George RR Martin (the second book in his series) and I find that I can’t remember many of the characters from the first book for the very same reason (coupled with the fact that there are many characters with the same or similar names). Thanks for sharing your opinion!:)

    Sarah Bibi Setar

    • You might like to download sample chapters of my eBook from either Amazon-Kindle or Smashwords and see if it addresses your taste for exotic locations and settings :)

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