New Children’s Book Transforms Hindu Scripture into Modern Adventure Story
GITA: The Battle of the Worlds by Sonal Sachdev Patel and Jemma Wayne-Kattan is a beautifully re-imagined adventure story transporting the sacred Hindu verse of the GITA into a book that is relevant to everybody’s life.
When eleven-year-old Dev’s father dies, he can’t stop lashing out at those he loves. Until he meets Sanjay, a sprite-like being who claims the incredible: that there is a battle raging inside Dev’s own body. But despite the mystery of the moment Dev feels his dark thoughts circling and his emotions and anguish once again rushing into his mind. Not to be put off Sanjay explains how he can help him control his emotions and with Dev’s agreement disappears inside his body to embark on a perilous journey beginning in the darkest realm at the bottom of Dev’s spine. As he searches for the noble warrior Prince Arjun, the only hope to defeat wicked Prince Ego, Sanjay encounters starving mobs, thieving gangs, water worlds and lands of fire, until at last he finds Arjun on the battlefield, ready to fight for Dev.
According to Young Minds charity 1 in 10 children have a diagnosable mental health disorder and so it’s no surprise that as social philanthropists, writers and mothers, Sonal Sachdev Patel and Jemma Wayne-Kattan are passionate about working on improving mental health in young children. By following the journey of the young boy, GITA: The Battle of the Worlds raises important life lessons and, with meditation at its core, equips young readers with accessible mental health tools. Sonal and Jemma hope that the story will not only inspire individual young readers but will give them tangible tools to cope with the struggles of modern day life.
Although taken from Hinduism’s epic sacred scripture Mahabharata, Sonal and Jemma, who was born into a Jewish family, are keen to emphasise the universality of the GITA and hope that by transforming it into a story aimed at children aged 8 to 14 will help promote greater religious understanding and tolerance from an early age.
Complimented by beautiful and original illustrations, GITA: The Battle of the World is a captivating and thought-provoking addition
Together Sonal and Jemma personify the East meets West mix of this story. With a friendship that has spanned over thirty years, Sonal and Jemma have danced as toddlers in ballets together, studied alongside one another at Cambridge University and now have worked together on this epic story. With Sonal spear-heading Gita expertise and insight, and Jemma taking the lead on the book’s text, the result was a truly collaborative work, made all the more meaningful by the history and understanding between its creators. Each with two daughters, Sonal and Jemma are proud feminists and both strive to incorporate ways to speak out on important issues within their careers.
The book was published by Harper Collins India in April this year and will be published by Harper 360 12th July 2018.
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