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The thrill in occult

Shweta Taneja dabbles in the supernatural underworld. Photo: K. Gopinathan

Shweta Taneja dabbles in the supernatural underworld. Photo: K. Gopinathan

The launch of Shweta Taneja’s Cult of Chaos was just as unique as the genre she has explored in her book. Cult of Chaos is a tantrik thriller set in Delhi. The launch kick started— at Atta Galatta recently—with an occult detective quiz, conducted by Sathvik Ashok of QuizCraft Global. The audience, avid quizzers most of them, were divided into groups of three. The quiz had five rounds, including detective fiction, urban legends/myths, religion/religious practices, etc. There were questions on cauldrons, pentacles, Bloody Mary and tarots through which the audience got to learn more about detective fiction and the occult.

Author Sharath Komarraju launched the book, with two convincing words, “Buy it!” Shweta’s dazzling smile made the event even brighter. The protagonist, fiery, in-your-face, Anantya Tantrist, is clearly close to Shweta’s heart. The story revolves around Anantya’s investigation into gut-wrenching cases of girls being sacrificed in a black magic ritual.

She also travels through the supernatural underworld of Delhi. For the book, Shweta read up on tantrism and folklore. “When I started to research on the occult, folklore and tribal tales in this country, one day I knew my protagonist was a tantrik detective. And the angry, victimized Anantya Tantrist, who was a survivor from a failed novel of before, a revenge saga which never took off, was a perfect fit here. This is not a single book for me, but a series. Each book will be a standalone case, but with each of these books, I want to explore Anantya’s world deeper,” said Shweta, an author and graphic novelist, who has also authored The Ghost Hunters of Kurseong .

Cult of Chaos is a HarperCollins publication.


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Printable version | May 18, 2022 12:33:29 am | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/the-thrill-in-occult/article6857297.ece