What is it about? : This book is about the history of a region which does not get the same attention that it more than deserves; south India. Medieval Deccan had some of the most important and significant kingdoms to have existed in the history of India and Hinduism as well and yet it does not get the same attention the northern part of India and its history gets.
Name: Lords of the Deccan : Southern India from the Chalukyas to the Cholas.
Author: Anirudh Kanisetti
Book Post No. 41
What is it about? : This book is about the history of a region which does not get the same attention that it more than deserves; south India. Medieval Deccan had some of the most important and significant kingdoms to have existed in the history of India and Hinduism as well and yet it does not get the same attention the northern part of India and its history gets. Even when it comes to books there are tons of books on history of the north India but not many on south India. Anirudh is trying to change that with this book. It contains, in superb details, the history of superpowers of that time, Chalukyas, Rashtrakutas, Kalyana Chalukyas and Cholas. The time period ranges from 6th century AD to 12th century AD.
How I came to read it? : I was browsing books at a shop during one of my trips to India when I noticed this book. When I mentioned this to one of my friends he bought it and later I borrowed it from him.
Did I like it? : Yes, its a great book. It plugs a pretty big gap in the area of books on south Indian history. Not only does Anirudh details the history of the kings and kingdoms, he does so in an engaging manner. There are elements of good story telling here. There are 3 main parts, the first part is dedicated the Chalukyas. Second part is about the Rashtrakutas and finally the third part is about the Kalyana Chalukyas and Cholas. I found out a lot of new things about this time of Indian history esp. about the temples that were built during this time and the cities that were established and grew to flourishing centers of art and architecture. History is rarely black and white. And kudos to the author to mention, wherever relevant, about current perspectives about Nationalism and secularism and put it into context. There is a lot of villainizing of Muslim Kings these days about their acts of violence but people forget most of that was a product of their times. This book shows even the Hindu kings indulged in violence as their times saw fit. The author also takes the time to flesh out the major King’s personalities which makes the story even more interesting.
Positives: Nicely structured and paced, with colorful and vivid details.
Negatives: Some sections can get boring.
Any other personal notes, observations, fun facts etc.: This book was in continuation of my reads on books about South Indian history. Last book was about the White Mughals.