The first volume took a lot of time to complete. In fact, it took 15 days for me to finish as reading was going very slow with a lot of gap between chapters. The plot was good and it got interesting as each and every character was unfolded. I took the second volume and finished in 7 days. The third did not take even 3 days and the fourth one was read in one stretch without me moving and was completed in just one and half days. In fact the novel was such an influence that till date I had read it three times.
Avakasikal is a huge novel. In fact it is the longest novel in an Indian language. I have read that the author took 10 years to complete the novel and it must be true. If it takes a month to read it, it must have taken a substantial amount of the life of the author. Avakasikal- meaning The Claimants - is briefly the modern day Mahabharata and has got a number of characters in it. The well woven plot that unfolds mainly in Malaysia does not take away the charm of the Indian feel of story and it sometimes take a ride in India for some crucial part. The novel depicts in depth analysis and mental state of each character and hence does not leave any tables unturned. The effort of the author was rewarded with rave reviews and prizes including state and central awards.
There are some reasons for me to like the book "Avakasikal". One of it is the beauty of story telling through the perpective of different characters. The same incident sometimes gets different interpretations through the eyes of different people and the author has done this job with ease. Another reason is the presence of the protagonist, Krishnanunni, and his mesmerizing approach to resolve issues. I won't say that this is the best novel in Malayalam but I would say that this is one of the best. One reason is that it has got not one story.
Instead it has got many stories that got interwoven well and narrated nicely and carefully. It would be difficult to spend a lot of time on such novels these days, but I would recommend it simply because this novel had played a good part in shaping my character.