We often believe that there is a good side and a bad side to everything. We tend to choose the good and reject the bad. Seldom do we realise that good and bad are but two sides of the same coin. What is good for one person might be bad for another. This is the premise of Amish Tripathi’s third instalment of the Shiva trilogy, The oath of the Vayuputras.
Kicking off from where The Secret of the Nagas left, the final chapter of the Shiva trilogy, albeit lengthy, continues at an interesting pace. In The oath of the Vayuputras, the face of the evil is finally unveiled. Interestingly, the disclosure of this evil is, on its own, an unexpected twist in the story. Shiva, as always, remains undeterred by the enemy and prepares himself for the ultimate battle. But he realises that his true calling is not to destroy evil, but to balance it with goodness.
What is fascinating in the trilogy is the evolution of the protagonist. A tribal lord at first, Shiva, who views the good and the bad as two distinct entities, rises above this moral duality to fulfil his true calling. Despite this newfound wisdom, the character of Shiva is not portrayed like a saint, who always makes the right decisions. In this novel, the author seems to be reminding the reader that Shiva is human like any of us, capable of erring. In this final instalment, Shiva finds himself dealing with a sea of emotions, at times, allowing them to cloud his judgement. These layers to his character make him endearing and relatable to the reader.