I read both part of Taranath Tantrik - City of Sorrow, and to summarize it, I can only say that I just can’t wait for the third installment. Brilliant story, keeps you gripped till the last page in both part. I will not discuss spoilers here. The story is about a Psychic Taranath Tantrik working with his friends Shankar, a CID office, Sneha, a TV journalist and Vibhuti, a horror novelist, in an investigation, where someone is trying to change the City of Joy Kolkata into City of Sorrows.
First part shows glimpse into Taranath’s past, and cut to present day for main story to develop. The second part again shows villain’s past, and then move to current day. So, the first one introduced TnT to us, and started chain of events which makes the story. Then second part introduced the villain to us, and the story progressed. I liked this type of storytelling, which gives you a glimpse of main character’s past, and then jumps directly to the story. Shamik Dasgupta has once again written a brilliant story. For those who are not aware, Taranath is a character created by Bibhuti Bhushan Bandopadhyay (Pather Panchali fame). The origin of Taranath is not touched, but Shamik has taken the character into current day and weaved the story around him.
The artists are different in each part. First one is drawn by Bikash Satpathy, whereas second one is by Tamal Saha. Interestingly, both have completely different style of drawing, and the pages have come out excellent. If I have to compare both, in my opinion I liked second part’s art more than the first one. But that’s when you have to compare, individually, both issues has suitable art according to the story. Even when the artist is same, you can clearly see the difference in drawing the past and current sequences. Normally I have seen people using different artists to bring such different style between page, but here it is accomplished by same artists. Colors by Vishwanath Manokaran in both part is excellent. He has used right tone to make the mood of pages.
Sneha’s character represent today’s women, who is independent smoking-drinking girl, can handle stalkers on her own. Another highlight of the story is discussions or ADDA as we call it in Kolkata, where the topic range from politics to movies to HP Lovecraft is very natural and reminds me of my own hangout with friends were no topic is off limit, including religion.
The genre is horror and it is presented well in the book. The backdrop is Kolkata, but the story can easily be told with any other city which has a bloody past. I liked how the story is linked with past history of Kolkata. Its like past has come to hound you now.
The trio of Taranath, Shankar and Vibhuti reminds me of Feluda, Jatayu and Topse. But the similarity ends there, as the characterisation is completely different.
I must also tell you guys that don’t expect Taranath to do a superhero act here. He is shown to do investigation, but he has not pulling off any stunt. In fact, we have more of Shankar/Vibhuti/Sneha than Taranath in these issues. But you won’t miss him, as the story unfolds very quickly, without any dull moment. We want more of Taranath for sure, and I am hoping that in coming issues, as the story unfolds, we will have more of TnT. In fact, showing very little creates a mysterious aura about him.
Overall, I liked the story, artwork and the characters. I am totally hooked to the series now, and waiting for the next part. We have got start of a great series here, and I would recommend you all to go out and get a copy of this series.