People have shown some interest in reading material for the Mahabharata, this post should save me from repeatedly typing the same things
1. Introductory books
These books are straight-forward narrations of the Mahabharata. They introduce the reader to all the major characters and plot turns. In my experience, people are not even aware of the major players in the Mahabharata. To them, it's simply the story of 5 good Pandavas vs 100 evil Kauravas. If you have never read the Mahabharata, or are unsure about what you have read, one of these books is a good place to start.
- The Mahabharata - Amar Chitra Katha. [English, Comic] This book, accompanied by my grandfather's stories, is my introduction to the Mahabharata. If you read this book, be sure to also read one of the two other books listed here. This book is a bit too simplistic, it's here because of nostalgic value.
- The Mahabharata - Ramesh Menon [English]
- The Mahabharata - Kamala Subramaniam [English] (I recommend reading this book)
2. Point of View (POV) Narrations
Now we come to the interesting part of the Mahabharata. If you choose to abandon a Sanjaya-esque all-knowing view of the Mahabharata, and read it from the point of view of a single character as it interacts with the Mahabharata world, you will discover that every character was right in every action they took. This is the real beauty of the Mahabharata. The whole is greater than the sum of it's parts. The characters behave as human beings would behave. They make decisions based on incomplete/incorrect knowledge. They are driven by lust, ambition, revenge and other human emotions. Unfortunately, I've come across precious few English books that take this approach. The bulk of the great writing related to the Mahabharata is in regional languages. (In my case, Marathi, my mother-tongue)
- Bhimsen - Prem Panicker [English] (from the POV of Bhima) This book is a loose English translation of M. T. Vasudevan Nair's Malayalam master-piece Randaamoozham (meaning Second Turn). It is freely available on the Internet. (I recommend reading this book)
- Mrityunjaya - Shivaji Sawant [Marathi] (from the POV of Karna) 'Conqueror of Death'
- Dhananjaya - Rajendra Kher [Marathi] (from the POV of Arjuna)...(more)Loading...