Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi
Published by Rick Riordan Presents on March 27, 2018
Genres: Children’s, Middle Grade, Fantasy, Mythology
Pages: 368 Format: ARC Source: Library
This ARC was received by my library department for marketing purposes. This does not impact my thoughts and opinions in any way.
Twelve-year-old Aru Shah has a tendency to stretch the truth in order to fit in at school. While her classmates are jetting off to family vacations in exotic locales, she’ll be spending her autumn break at home, in the Museum of Ancient Indian Art and Culture, waiting for her mom to return from their latest archeological trip. Is it any wonder that Aru makes up stories about being royalty, traveling to Paris, and having a chauffeur?
One day, three schoolmates show up at Aru’s doorstep to catch her in a lie. They don’t believe her claim that the museum’s Lamp of Bharata is cursed, and they dare Aru to prove it. Just a quick light, Aru thinks. Then she can get herself out of this mess and never ever fib again.
But lighting the lamp has dire consequences. She unwittingly frees the Sleeper, an ancient demon whose duty it is to awaken the God of Destruction. Her classmates and beloved mother are frozen in time, and it’s up to Aru to save them.
The only way to stop the demon is to find the reincarnations of the five legendary Pandava brothers, protagonists of the Hindu epic poem, the Mahabharata, and journey through the Kingdom of Death. But how is one girl in Spider-Man pajamas supposed to do all that?
Kick-starting a new mythology based imprint from Rick Riordan, Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi is a delightful adventure filled with cursed lamps, absent gods, talking birds, and young ladies stepping into their destiny. It’s full of ups, downs, and the difficulties of middle school life paired with oncoming destruction and demons at every turn. If you haven’t been hooked yet, let me give you a little more insight!
Aru is a twelve year old trying to fit in at school and wants to spend time with her mom. Unfortunately she didn’t plan on being a reincarnated legend tasked with saving the world. She’s blunt to a fault, stretches the truth, and is scared of what’s to come. She’s joined on her mission by Mini, a smart girl who comes prepared despite her fears, and Boo, a pigeon with a past.
Chokshi can do anything with her writing and this book is no exception. It’s heartfelt and funny with magic bursting through the seams of an ordinary world. The imagination and vivacity drips from her descriptions and the way she wove Hindu mythology into every piece of this tale was exquisite. It will resonate with readers first discovering these stories and pantheon as well as those who grew up on them.
Overall Roshani Chokshi’s Aru Shah and the End of Time was a wonderful first installment to a fun mythological quartet. It’s got plenty of modern day snark mixed with rich culture and Chokshi’s brilliant writing makes this story shine. Plus Aru is an incredibly relatable character that everyone should experience. Clearly I absolutely recommend picking this one up!
Are you excited for Aru Shah and the End of Time? Love books inspired by mythology?
Let me know in the comments below!