Before I could begin with anything else about the book, let me confess that Meeta J Gupta, the novelist who has come up with such a novel, deserves appreciation and critical acclaim for her writing – with layers that give her novel depth and a narrative that employs all the traditional tools to make a novel more than mere words: symbolism, metaphors that run through the novel and imagery (or analogies) that communicate with conviction. The Realm Beyond The Mind is the title of her novel and, if you are too curious to know the Indian Book Critics’ feedback, you must read it if you are one of those readers who love challenging books… it will keep you interested in the storyline, engaged with the timeline and alert with the development of the characters, plot and the widening theme.
Just notice the names of the chapters or the titles as many say these headings. You will notice that the chapter titles speak too much of the content you would be seeing (and reading). It begins with the Mountains, travels through the Forest and reaches the Crystal World which is free from the burden of thoughts – past or future. Then the author introduces us to her concept of the Reptilian mind or the mind filled with noise… and a Journey begins crossing the Web of Illusions and the subject, or you as a reader, reaches a stage where he or she can experience the Anchored Mind… able to receive thoughts before reaching a stage of wilderness where one can muse about the mysteries of life…
Yes, all those capitalised words are the names of the chapters minus plus the articles… you see how interesting things might be? There are many other chapters in the first part, 16 to be precise. The author has left the readers with chapter number 16, The Unknown. In the second part, the readers will experience Going Beyond the Mind with chapters in the following order: The Tribal Land, Beyond Time, The Warrior, Die Everyday and Gusts of Magic.
The storyline is interesting as it traces the development of three major characters (who can share the noun Protagonist together) – Meru, Vaid Moti Lal and Darsh. Dr Wick, who is rather a wicked scientist as his name suggests, wants to launch his medicine to satisfy his urge to make more and more money… even without successful or satisfactory trials. He might be termed an evolving antagonist or a round character as E M Forster has suggested in his famous book Aspects of the Novel. Vaid Moti Lal is an acclaimed Ayurvedacharya who can cure almost any disease on the earth with his herbs and ancient methods mentioned in Aryuved Shashtra. His grandson, Darsh, however, is inspired by Dr Wick and believes that Vaid Moti Lal could use his knowledge for more money, fame and luxuries. Meru is a girl who has travelled from the Crystal World, a world in another dimension or timeline or anything beyond our world… She constantly keeps exploring, learning and teaching.
The story is very interesting and it has many layers. Intertwined with the wonderful lessons that are embedded in the timeline and storyline of the novel, a reader will never be free until he or she reaches the conclusion and finds out what happens with the characters. In short, the novel is not only enjoyable but also worthy of being discussed and rather debated – are there Indian authors such as Meeta who can produce entertaining as well as meaningful novels?
You can get a copy of this MUST READ novel by clicking on the link to Amazon India below:
Review by Gunjan for Indian Book Critics
The Realm Beyond the Mind by Meeta J Gupta – Review
- Indian Book Critics' Score
Read it. You will enjoy it. Think as you read. You will think more, discuss and learn! A must-read and much-recommended novel for the readers who want to read something different, something sensible and something meaningful – more than words! It stays with you… for many days after you put it down once you complete.