Rishi and Karishma are living a routine life in the US with nothing more exciting to deal with than middle school—until their cat starts talking. He reveals that they need to find the Jiva Sutra—the ancient Book of Life—before it falls into evil hands. Could they really be the chosen ones entrusted centuries ago with the book, born again to restore it for the benefit of all beings? Will the lizard-born Hiramani, an enemy from that past life, seize it before them and use its powerful life force for his own nefarious ends?
Teaming up with a host of wild creatures and the world's oldest trees, Rishi and Karishma set off on a dangerous quest that takes them from America to India and Tibet. From the ruins of an ancient university in Nalanda, to the forests of Gir and the Temple of the Saffron Cats in Tibet, the brother and sister must battle the evil Hiramani in their bid to save the Jiva Sutra and restore balance to the earth.
Nandini Bajpai grew up in New Delhi, one of four sisters and many cousins, in a family that liked to read. Although she has dabbled in corporate finance, business analysis and fostering shelter animals, her first love is writing. She is the author of Red Turban, White Horse: My Sister's Hurricane Wedding and Starcursed. She lives in the Boston area with her husband, kids, their dog Yogi and cat Bikky.
It was time. The massive banyan tree felt it in every leaf, branch and tangled vine. Still, there was no sign of the book. When it is needed, the master had said, the book will be found. For a thousand years the tree had waited, prospering on the rich soil carried down from the Himalayas by the Ganges. Its hanging vines had thickened and spread so that instead of one there were now hundreds of trunks. Birds and squirrels and monkeys chirped and chattered in the forest the tree had become. Village women in bright saris came to light lamps in its grove and give thanks for the rains that never failed, the wars that passed them by and the diseases that didn't harm their children. But subtle signs in the air and water and soil told the tree it was time. The full spring moon hanging in the dusty air said it was time. The winds wafting in from other lands whispered it was time. Still the book, hidden long ago in the village by the Ganges, stayed buried.
But the tree had faith. When it is needed, the master had said, the book will be found. So, when the pair of snow-white bullocks stopped ploughing in the middle of the field, the tree watched. When the farmer dug up the strange obstacle they had hit in the field, it waited. When he opened the blackened vessel and lifted the fragile palm-leaf manuscript from it, the tree knew.
It was time to sound the alarm. The tree had waited centuries for this, but the networks of trees and forests, of wandering singers in the oceans and in the air, once so many, were now few. Were there enough to carry the news? The ancient guardian gathered its powers and flung into the world a message as silent as it was strong. Others took up the message and passed it on, and on, and on. As the message swept urgently across land and sea, somewhere in the world an orange cat froze mid-pounce, a guide dog pricked her ears, a man braked abruptly in traffic, an iguana blinked. For there were only a few beings that remained who knew the manuscript for what it was. The most powerful object on earth—the Jiva Sutra—the Book of Life.
|The Fasting Cat||1|
|Professor Ocean of Wisdom||9|
|The Station Tree||16|
|The Other Master||30|
|The Iguana in the Rotunda||41|
|A Sudden Storm 45 The Map of Life||45|
|The Banyan Tree||54|
|The Iguana on the Tower||65|
|The Cat in the Bag||73|
|The Train to Gaya||79|
|The Jiva Sutra||91|
|The Bodhi Tree||98|
|The Iguana in the Banyan Grove||112|
|The Temple of the Saffron Cats||122|
|The Keeper of the Water||127|
|The Last Lions||137|
|The Last Agreement||160|
|The Iguana in the Ballpark||167|
|The Levitating Lotus||176|
|The Song of Life||188|
Item Code: NAP552 Author: Nandini Bajpai Cover: Paperback Edition: 2015 Publisher: Rupa Publication Pvt. Ltd. ISBN: 9788129135964 Language: English Size: 8.0 inch X 5.0 inch Pages: 215 Other Details: Weight of the Book: 160 gms