Strange Horizons, February 8, 2021
Reviewed by Seraph
That there are many versions of every myth is a readily accepted idea. So too is the concept that every myth once sprung from some kernel of truth, no matter how diminished or exaggerated it became. The “true story” told by the originator of that myth is kind of the holy grail of mythical fiction, posing any number of pitfalls to the writer. Dinesh manages to smoothly dodge most of those flaws, presenting a believable account from the originating view of Devayani, the titular daughter of the Demon Sage. Set in the middle of the war between the gods and demons, most of the story centers around the various attempts to gain the secret of the Resurrection Spell from the Demon Sage. It is a mighty spell that has single-handedly (thus far) drawn out a war against the entirety of the gods, a war that otherwise might have ended long ago in the overruning and annihilation of the demons. Much of the rest of the story is Devayani herself setting the account straight, acknowledging the various other versions of the tale while telling her own story, determining her own fate. It is beautiful writing, full of vibrant imagery and rich lore. Is it the aforementioned holy grail? That may be an unfair standard to hold any author to. But it is fully worth the read, with compliments to the author.