Harshada Pathare’s novel decodes mysticism of Kashi, Shiva-tattva

Express News Service

A vast majority of novels trending in the market are based on thriller or love themes. Contrary to this, debutant author Harshada Pathre thought of brewing something refreshing new for her readers. Her initial scribble of ideas got transformed into an interesting novel filled with mythological insights, paranormal concepts, and streaks of romance.

Based on a unique paranormal spiritual genre, ‘The Following’ opens with the protagonist ruminating over paranormal experiences she’s recently been subjected to. Moreover, each ghost has a unique manner of approaching the business, inspired by their intellectual level at the time of death. The dead have made their presence known, disturbing her day-to-day life, begging impossible questions, and stealing the protagonist - Kalki’s sleep.

Set to the backdrop of Mumbai’s real-world chaos, the sudden advent of paranormal activities traces Kalki’s descent into seeming madness. Deconstructing the words of ghosts-internal, she sets out on a journey to better understand the spirit world. Juggling a stressful freelancer’s job while researching specters isn’t easy, but the more she reads, the more convinced she becomes of her own sanity. Beckoned forth by inner-passengers, Kalki ultimately decides that she’ll need to better understand the powerful forces at play.

While still unable to fully communicate, she learns much of the departed, and a colorful tapestry of bygone injustice unfurls. Nonetheless, pivotal questions remain. Why have these spirits chosen her as their vessel and what can she do to help them find peace? To find answers, Kalki drifts across the holy places, and sages much like a ghost, herself. After winnowing through an endless array of con artists, she finally decides to unriddle it all in the land of Kashi, else she may remain forever lost.

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