Book Review: Kojiro by Khalil A. Barnett

Book Details:

Author: Khalil A. Barnett
Release Date: 
15th November 2022
Genre: High Fantasy Asian Myths & Legends, Asian Literature
Format: E-book 
Pages: 436
A sword & sorcery fantasy novel based on Asian myths & legends.
Tulpas, otherwise known as thought-forms, spring first from the imagination, then go on to live lives independent of their creators. And sometimes, they maintain a hostile, even violent, relationship with said creators.
No one knows this quite like Coletrane Marx, the only son of an eccentric billionaire archeologist, who one night as a child unwittingly created a tulpa himself; one that visited him in demon form in the middle of the night to murder his parents with a samurai sword.

Forever changed by this trauma, Coletrane grows up to inherit his father’s obsession with archeology and to discover that his unfiltered, childhood imagination created not only this mysterious, cursed samurai named Kojiro, but also an alternate feudal history wherein the strong-willed warrior has his own prophetic story in a world full of mythic creatures, powerful humanoid animal Lords, living deities, and evil Tricksters. A world, Coletrane in addition learns, that will overlap with his own in catastrophic ways if he and Kojiro do not reconcile their dark, shared past and come together as one to stop it.


Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Kijiro by Khalil A. Barnett is a sword & sorcery fantasy novel based on Asian myths & legends and tells the story of Kojiro, a malignant manifestation of a young child, the son of a billionaire archeologist.

This book is so different from the usual fantasy stories that one reads, especially the popular culture Fantasy books, as most of them draw heavily from Greek and/or Roman legends. But this book was a real treat for me because it is based on Asian mythology and being an Asian myself it was so gratifying to read a story about the culture I could, if not entirely being a South Asian, at least partially, relate to way more than the European fantasy plots. I could feel more connected to the story and especially the motivations of the character and the stakes in the story for them.

I loved the author’s writing style — it had a great flow, making the book seem like a lullaby, albeit dark. The pacing of the novel is spot on and the tension runs tight throughout the story, keeping the readers engaged right from the beginning to the very last page. The concept is phenomenal, the execution fantastic and the overall story extremely captivating and entertaining.

I enjoyed this book thoroughly and would highly recommend it to all readers, especially to all Asian readers to explore this amazing gem.

You can also read this review on:



Book Review: Yama’s Lieutenant by Anuja Chandramouli

30279445Author: Anuja Chandramouli
Release Date: 8th June 2016
Genre: Fiction-Fantasy, Indian Mythology, Indian Literature
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 376
Publisher: Random House India

Rating: ★★★★


The inhabitants of the thousand hells of Yama have broken free from their prison and vowed to wreak havoc on the heavens, the earth and hell. With the fiendish Hatakas and Narakamayas teamed up with Naganara, a terrifying necromancer hungry for power, the universe is headed for war and destruction unless one human has something to do with it.
Agni Prakash, a debonair young man whose world has been turned upside down by the death of his twin sister, Varu, has been enlisted to stop these forces and be Yama s very own lieutenant. As the mythical world clashes with his own, Agni discovers a manuscript left behind by his sister. Hauntingly, it draws parallels to the treacherous path upon which he has been thrust. Equipped with an acerbic wit and winning charm, Agni undertakes a battle, where the odds seem tipped wildly against him, and finds unlikely companions along the way.
Will he be able to uncover the secret behind his sister’s writings? And more importantly, will he be able to avert the destruction that seems imminent?


Yama’s Lieutenant by Anuja Chandramouli is an engaging and a well-written book with a unique concept.

The concept fo Yama’s personal lieutenant was quite good and overall I enjoyed the storyline. The flow of the story progression was good too. I did find the plot quite interesting, especially because it wasn’t entirely mythological, at least not directly, and liked the way the author gave it a very unique twist involving mortals in it. I enjoyed the story from the starting till the end. In spite of the ending being quite predictable, I enjoyed it and liked reading this book.

Though there was a bit of scene-hopping problem that left me re-reading some of the lines, and I hate to say this, but it happened quite often.

The writing was good, as always, but I did feel that a much simpler writing would make the reading process more enjoyable. After all, not everyone likes to read the classic-y lyrical language.

Apart from these minor issues, the book was good and it proved to be a nice change for me from the books that I normally read. I’d recommend this book to all readers, especially Indians, who’ve heard different versions of stories based on Yamaraj.

Goodreads and Amazon

Book Review: Kamadeva- The God Of Desire


Author: Anuja  Chandramouli 
Release Date: August, 2014
Genre: Mythology | Fantasy | Fiction
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 326
Publisher: Rupa Publications
Source: Author
Buy it here: Amazon and Flipkart