Vortal Shockwave is so gripping that even when we got the manuscript we had to read on till the very end at one go. Time travel is not an unusual theme in literature, but what Ashok does with the multiple worlds interlocking and coalescing is so complex and unusual that one is completely hooked. What makes it even more interesting is that the story is told through the multiple points of view of the different members of the family, bringing in a multiplicity of perspectives.
I have long been a fan of Ashok’s work. I remember being enthralled by Vertigo many years back, when not much else by Banker was available. And when the Ramayana series started–I was enthralled. I have never been a fan of mythology, but Banker’s Ramayana was something else! What Vortal Shockwave shows is his ability to write in yet another genre, and in a completely different style. There is the same ability to create a plot which makes for such compulsive reading that one is forced willynilly to read on, but what is perhaps different is the warm familial humour which permeates the book.
Vortal Shockwave is one of those books that you must not read when you have other things to do. The action is unrelenting, and the pace never flags, and before you know it, the milk has burnt, the eggs are hardboiled, and you have to have burnt toast for breakfast. In other words, you cannot put it down. And the idea of the vortal, with its multiple realities is so intriguing and absorbing, that the book is a cerebral delight as well. The characters are recognisable and yet, quirky, the plot has interesting twists and turns, the concept is complex and imaginative … what more can you ask for, on a rainy afternoon … or a sunny one, for that matter?