Thursday, 15 February 2018

#BookReview: Tree Bears Witness by Sharath Komarraju

Title: Tree Bears Witness
Author: Sharath Komarraju
Publisher: Westland Ltd
Published on: 17th November 2017
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 250
ISBN: 9386850443


Barely a month has passed since the royal wedding of Emperor Akbar to the legendary Jodha, when the new queen’s brother, Sujjamal, is found murdered in the palace gardens. 
With his honour and reputation at stake, Akbar asks his trusted advisor Birbal to solve the mystery. The murder has taken place in a garden, at a spot between two mango trees, and the two guards who are eyewitnesses have conflicting versions of what could have happened. Was it suicide? Was it Akbar himself who ordered the killing or was it the Rajputs who accompanied Sujjamal, his uncles and cousin, who are guilty?
Set in a period that has been described as the golden age of the Mughals, the novel draws us into the royal court of Agra, abuzz with political intrigue, personal enmities and hidden rivalries, where everyone is a suspect until proven otherwise.


The cover page of the book Tree Bears Witness is very simple having an image of a back profile of a man going somewhere. The cover page is very simple in very subtle colours and is very apt with the story.


Tree Bears Witness - A Birbal Mystery is a very engaging book. It is a Birbal Mystery revolving around the Emperor Akbar and his wife's brother Sujjamal who was killed or he committed suicide. It was a great mystery which Birbal had to solve. Birbal who is one of the navratna of Emperor Akbar was given the task to solve this murder mystery which has so many Suspects and Birbal who is known as one of the most intelligent man solves this mystery.
The plot is simple, it is not having many twists but is very intriguing. It is tight and concrete. The characterization is very well developed and portrayed. The character of Birbal is very well portrayed and shown as one of the most intelligent man who never shies and always concerned to find the truth. The story is not so pacy, it moves at its own pace and can be easily finished in one sitting. The events are very well described. Each chapter has its own new revelations. There are various emotions shown which are penned beautifully and are marvelously laced that bind the story. The writing style of the author is simple and is flowing and there are few twists and turns which are really nicely penned down. The novel is set in the Mughal period and can be easily visualized. A very interesting and a full of suspense story.
Overall, an intriguing and a page turner book. I loved the book. I highly recommend this book to those who want to read a light suspense story.

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Sharath Komarraju is an author of fiction and non fiction based in Bangalore, India. His best known work is the Hastinapur series, in which he speaks into the silences of the Mahabharata story through the voics of the epic's many women characters. His first novel, Murder in Amravati, was longlisted for the Commonwealth Book Prize, 2013.

* I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange of a review.

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