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This is an image of the book cover with an ancient broken sculpted Indian goddess mask juxtaposed atop a traditional temple mandala design. At the top right corner is the author's name & book title: Priya Vasudevan's 'Middle Time'.

Middle Time:
Where The Past & Present Intertwine...

... revealing secrets and mysteries that transcend time. Delve into the contrasting worlds of contemporary Chennai in South India and the enchanting UNESCO heritage site of Hampi during the fading days of the illustrious Vijayanagara Empire, with MIDDLE TIME, the first in the Maya Trilogy.

MIDDLE TIME revolves around Maya, a determined lawyer in Chennai in the year 1996. Maya's life takes an unexpected turn when she learns that her client, Tulsi, who inexplicably missed appearing at a crucial hearing in her divorce case, has tragically died under mysterious circumstances at her regular salsa dancing class. Maya's concerns deepen when Shibani, Tulsi's  small daughter and her grieving mother, convey the devastating news of Tulsi's demise.

Though reluctant to interfere with the on-going police investigation, Maya finds herself making a promise to a tearful Shibani to uncover the truth behind Tulsi's untimely death. In her pursuit of justice, Maya embarks on a perilous journey that leads her to Tulsi's apartment where despite her search disrupted by an unseen unexpected intruder. Maya stumbles upon a diary and an old paperback novel in Tamil, seemingly incomplete. Her curiosity now thoroughly piqued, Maya begins to read the intriguing tale inscribed within its pages.

In Which Maya Is Compelled To Investigate Thulasi's Death

In Which Maya Travels Back To 1536

The narrative transports Maya to the year 1536, where she encounters Thulasi, a widowed woman who suffered excommunication upon giving birth to a son, a year after her husband's demise. The Alur  village is stunned when Thulasi  claims to be bearing the child of the human manifestation of Madhavaswamy, the deity of the grand Alur temple, sometime  after the riots that shook the region in 1529 following Krishna Deva Raya's death, Excommunicated, she survives through the proceeds of her land and the patronage of Bhadrinatha Sharma, a powerful Brahmin landlord.

 

Amidst the enigma of his origins, the story takes an even more mystifying turn as a miracle unfolds. Despite the Alur Brahmin community's refusal to perform his thread ceremony and initiate him into the community, due to doubts surrounding his parentage, Manjunatha, defiantly immerses himself in the temple tank until his plea is fulfilled. Astonishingly, he emerges with the sacred thread, heralded as a divine miracle. Bhadrinatha Sharma, fascinated by Manjunatha's divine connection, decides to take the young boy under his wing and make him a saint, which Thulasi opposes as she feels her son is but a boy.

Simultaneously, in Hampi, Ningi, a maid in the service of Achale, a devadasi at the revered Virupaksheshwara temple, discovers Tulsi's lifeless body along the banks of the nearby river. The riverbank lies close to both Ningi's dwelling and Achale's land, leaving many questions unanswered.

In Which A Body Is Discovered

The Final Revelation:

Why was Thulasi murdered? And what connection does her tragic fate have to the untimely demise of Tulsi in modern-day Chennai? These perplexing queries compel Maya and Achalabbe to confront a dangerous adversary, unveiling a web of intrigue and betrayal.

Prepare to immerse yourself in this enthralling narrative, where two distinct eras intertwine, ancient secrets resurface, and the relentless pursuit of truth transcends the boundaries of time. As Maya and Achale embark on their extraordinary journeys, their lives and those of the other characters in MIDDLE TIME unfold against the backdrop of territorial battles, communal tensions and the compromises individuals have to make when they want to get ahead in a climate of competing interests and rigid social stratification. Join them as together, Maya and Achale navigate the depths of history and the complexities of human nature, seeking the truth that binds past and present and ultimately, the  secrets that lie within.

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