Title: The Secret Of Aum
Author: Pavi Raman
Illustrator: Manasa Reddy
Age group: 4 plus mythology enthusiasts, otherwise 5-8 years
I’m not a big mythology fan and I have not read many mythology books to Neil. But, he seems to be innately drawn towards mythology – he knows all the Krishna stories and gets his dad to tell him mythology stories at bedtime. So, Ikaroa books were perfect to read to him.
I was pleasantly surprised by them because they were not the typical ‘mythology’ books that contain the regular, traditional stories filled with violence and killing, that we all try to avoid reading to our kids. We have two Ikaroa books, and we’ve loved them both, but today I’m reviewing the one Neil (and me) have loved the most amongst the two – The Secret Of Aum.
The story is about Little Kartik, who feels his brother and father have special powers but he is the only one in the family who is not special. So he goes to Brahmalok, first to Nandi the bull and then to Brahma, to find out if he’s special. He takes Brahma as his guru, and as is customary, Brahma starts his classes with “Aum”. Kartik enquires about the meaning of Aum, and from there begins a sweet, slightly funny and deeply insightful journey.
The book has several takeaways, of course one of which is it beautifully explains the meaning of Aum – relating it to love and bonding, especially a mother’s love for her child. This makes it very easy for children to understand. Secondly, the book helps children understand that we are all special in our own unique ways.
Kids interested in mythology will love learning the deeper meaning of terms and qualities associated with Gods, while those relatively new to it like Neil, will enjoy it for the storyline, while being introduced to all the important mythological characters.
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