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Yayaati

Narrated by: Sakshi Malhotra
Length: 19 hrs and 22 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (45 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The story of Yayati is perhaps one of the most intriguing and fascinating episodes of Mahabharata. Yayati was a great scholar and one of the noblest rulers of olden times. He followed the shastras and was devoted to the welfare of his subjects. Even the king of gods, Indra, held him in high esteem. Married to seductively beautiful Devyani, in love with her maid Sharmishtha, and father of five sons from two women, Yayati unabashedly declared, 'My lust for pleasure is unsatisfied'. His quest for the carnal continued, sparing not even his youngest son, and exchanging his old age for his son's youth.

Please note: This audiobook is in Hindi.

©2015 Vishnu Sakharam Khandekar (P)2018 Audible, Inc.

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Recommended

The book is well drafted and draws clear and elaboarate perpective of every character's innate personas. All characters are depicted as privileged humans (and not like Gods) having their own sets of good and bad ideologies. So nicely and eloquently written that u will connect with each person's story.

Sakshi narrated the book impressively but book is recorded at a very slow pwce, i heard d entire book at 1.75x and yet i was comfortable understanding each and every word and the emotion behind it.

3 people found this helpful

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Speechless.

1.About the Book: Yayaati by Vishnu Sakharam Khandekar presented by Audible Studios and narrated by Sakshi Malhotra.

2.About the Performance: I would deeply congratulate and show my gratitude towards Audible Studios for bringing out this novel in audio book format in such an excellent way and the narration by Sakshi Malhotra was like cherry on the top of a cake.Her narration was clear,steady and had the required pace adjusted according to the sequence of events in the novel.Her narration made easy enough for a person to imagine the entire story in one's mind and I am very happy for that.This was my first audio book ever,the author's writing,perfect narration and audible studios made the experience of 19 hours and 22 minutes worthwhile.I really enjoyed this experience.So,5 stars for performance.

3.About the Writing: The author adopted a great approach of writing this book in such a format where the 3 principal characters tell the story from their point of view and the reader really finds it difficult while judging these 3 characters.Usually,I don't read/listen books on mythological fiction because either the author tends to deviate very much from the original source material or the author presents his/her own point of view which seems to be biased and many a times incorrect.Many a times this point of view of author feels obsessed such as painting a good image of a villain,etc.For a person like me,who revers our epics not as mythology but as our true "itihaas" and religious texts in such a high regard could not tolerate any such nuisance in the name of "creative liberty of author".But,after much reluctance I bought this audio book and really I have to say that the author has done a wonderful job in this book.He took the creative liberty by introducing new characters such as Mugulika and Mandaar and also did not deviate very much from the original text.The author used his vivid imagination to describe each and every normal scene and made it alive and magical.The perfect narration supported it at it's best to make this experience extraordinary.Using author's style of writing we can get into the minds of each principal character and understand why he/she has chosen to do a particular action or know about their thinking.Overall,an author needs just one book to make a name in the literary world and Yayaati was a masterpiece by great V.S. Khandekar.No doubt why this book was conferred by Jnanapith and Sahitya Akademi Award.

4.My personal opinion on this story: As I have mentioned earlier as well the reader will really find a hard time to find out who among these 3 characters was correct/incorrect.But in my opinion everyone was everyone's culprit in some way or the other.Yayaati,a king who could not control his lustful desires back when he was a prince.A person who somewhat represents a modern man,surrenders to drinking and his desires.A person who accepts a brahman "guru kanya" coming out of well as his wife,given to the fact that he was so mesmerized by her beauty that he ignored her vices such as jealousy,stubbornness and anger.A person who forgot that he was a husband when he makes physical relation with Sharmishtha because he could not get the love he always wanted(or I would say means to satisfy his lustful desires) from Devayani.A person who forgot that he was a father when Yadu was captured by his enemies and he does nothing.He wronged Puru by exchanging his old age with Puru's youth just to have physical relation with Alka,who later turned out to be his future daughter in-law.And many a times he crossed the boundaries just to fulfill his desires but every time he remains hungry for more.He slept with Madhavi and Tadhaka which eventually resulted in death of both women.Yayaati could not love Devayani and he never loved Sharmishtha as well because while he was under the influence of his drinks he told Devyani that he wants all the gorgeous women for himself,if he had truly loved Sharmishtha he would have escaped with her or at least did not leave that poor mother all alone with her small kid.In the form of Yayaati,author has excellently showed us what lust can do to a person who cannot control it.Five years ago,when I read "Gunahon ke Devta" by Dharamveer Bharati,I realized how important it is to control our lust and do not confuse it with love.
Yayaati had to face the anger of Devayani on the first night of their marriage and he never got that love from her which he always wanted.
Coming to Devayani,she was angry,jealous,selfish and very egoistic when it comes to be the daughter of Shukracharya.She had done rude and unjust behavior to Sharmishtha by making her maid-servant and ill-treating her.But she is cheated by her husband.Even she could not get the love she always wanted because Kacha left her and she could not wholly accept Yayaati as her true love.In the rage of getting revenge from Kacha for declining her love,she married Yayaati even she knew from the first sight that Yayaati was only after her beauty so that she could become the Queen of Hastinapur.
Now about Sharmishtha I would like to say that she crossed the boundaries when she insulted Devayani at the ghats and allegedly pushed her into the well.The second time she crossed it again when she secretly loved and made physical relations with Yayaati,who was already married.But she suffered a lot from Devayani's behavior when she was left with no choice other than being a maid-servant of Devayani to being called a loose-character women by her when she was pregnant.She had to flee from Hastinapur to save her child's life and faced all the challenges very bravely.

5.Conclusion: The last 25 minutes of this story really relieves us a lot.Kacha returning Puru's youth,the altogether changed behavior of Devayani and Puru having utmost respect and love for his step-mother Devayani.The love of Devayani and Sharmishtha as sisters in the end and their selfless service for Yayaati wins our hearts.Yayaati's last lesson to Puru as King is what the author is trying to convey to his readers.

An overall amazing journey where we met an ideal person like Kacha,who has sought true meaning of love,sacrifice,life and friendship.A person like Yati who runs away from home since his childhood turns ascetic then madman and is helped by Kacha to become normal again.A faithful friend like Madhav who can be completly trusted and a great son like Puru whose unconditional love and sacrifice makes us enchanted.Maid-servants like Alka and Mugulika who served Yayaati.Parents of Yayaati who loved him so much.Overall,this story deserves 5 stars.Great Story by VS Khandekar.

2 people found this helpful

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Excellent and very deeply description.

In this novel you can learn many ethical values. Though this novel seems to depend on a mythological story from Mahabharata, but the narrator feelings made it beyond the time and Era.

1 person found this helpful

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Unparalleled

Narration was extraordinary. This work of the author shows why it was selected for Sahitya Academy award. Great piece of literature.

1 person found this helpful

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  • AK
  • 06-09-20

wonderful read !

Thoroughly enjoyed this book. It is a perfect companion for a long drive. Narration and voice modulation is perfect and characters came to life.

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Strong characterisation - wonderful narration!

Yayati - has three strong characters! Their monologues will also emotionally overwhelm you. The narration of Sakshi Malhotra is also wonderful !

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one of the classic book

best book with best narration... this book gave a different perspective to yayati's story. loved it.

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great, loved it

really a great book, one must read it, I enjoyed, at no moment it was boring.

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Love to listen audio

It is very nice to listen as audio is appropriate and used very effectively for different scenarios.

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Great story telling.

Throughly enjoyable. Narration is very good though a bit slow. Had a great time listening. The story is laden with deep philosophical thoughts and ideas. Thanks to Audible books.

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  • R. Bhatt
  • 17-06-20

A classic

It’s probable even better in the original Marathi but I found it pretty gripping past hour 1. Moral corruption, a gripping climax, more sex than you can imagine (albeit in highly formal Hindi) and how humans can justify pretty much anything. Yayaati comes across as quite pathetic; Devyani is evil but you understand her motivations. Sharmistha I found a bit dull - but even with her you see sparks of rebellion. Still what does she see in Yayaati. Maybe he was really hot?

The reading got a bit getting used to - it wasn’t very expressive but it was well done and consistent.