Illustrated Mahabharata, India’s Greatest Epic – by Sia Gupta

The Mahabharata has been re-told entirely in verse by 10-year-old Sia Gup. This is the first time that a story from the great Indian epic will be told in verse and is written by a child. It is also the first time that an Indian writer has written in verse for kids.

The Mahabharata is a colossal work of epic literature and this animated adaptation captured the attention of many people all over the world. The illustrations in this book are simple, but they are incredibly well done. The descriptions are also very detailed and accurate to the original text, which is unbelievably difficult to do in verse form.

This retelling of one of India’s most famous texts was originally penned by a 10-year-old girl with no formal training in poetry or illustration.

 In under 1, 000 couplets, this young poetess has captured the unfolding of the battle between the Pandavas and the Kauravas for the throne of Hastinapur. 

From the birth of Bhishma, to the war that had no winners, Sia delves deep into the events, the characters and the moral dilemmas they face. 

With consummate skill, she recasts this tale of love and hate, truth and deceit, intrigue and war, life and death. Focussing on the ideals of dharma, duty and sacrifice, these verses show that the Mahabharata remains relevant even in the 21st century.

About the Author:

Twelve-year-old Sia Gupta is currently studying in Grade 7 in Modern School, New Delhi. Deeply interested in poetry, Sia wrote her first book titled ‘‘The Magical World of Poems”, at the age of 8. She wrote the “Tales in Rhyme” series based on the popular tales of “Aladdin”, “Cinderella”, “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” and “Beauty and the Beast” when she was 9 years old. The series won her the Federation of Indian Publishers Award. With a keen interest in Indian mythology, she wrote “The Mahabharata in Rhyme” at the age of ten. With a desire to spread the joy of reading and writing among her peers, she has presented “Ten Tips to Publish at Ten”, a 45-minute interactive event, to grade 4 and 5 students across various schools. She is an avid reader and her favourite genres are epic poetry and fantasy fiction. Sia also plays the piano and loves to dance.


Sia’s extraordinary poetic feat will leave readers, young and old, WONDERSTRUCK at her dexterity with not just words and rhymes but her understanding of the great epic. The Fluidity of Sia’s narrative is bound to make the Mahabharat far more accessible to interested readers across the world. The illustrations are wonderful as well. – Shobhaa de 

This delightful retelling of the Mahabharata in verse brings the epic alive by and for a new generation. Sia Gupta is an impressive young talent who at this tender age has already demonstrated a deep understanding of this ancient text. –  Namita Gokhale.

I was curious about the Mahabharata in rhyme – but I loved the earlier books by this young author- so decided to try this one too. Plus I was looking to introduce the Mahabharata to my kids. I was amazed by how easy and gripping it was for the kids …. this book is a gem for all kids and even for adults who like a good rhyme! – Neha Mitroo

Sia Gupta’s amazing poetic accomplishment would be commendable for an adult, let alone a seventh grader. She not only read and absorbed the details and nuances of this massive, complex story, but culled out those aspects that are the most fascinating and narrate the story with the greatest impact. And her poetry glows with intelligence, articulation and charm. Her vocabulary is way ahead of people much older than her. She has a great literary future ahead of her. All her books are worth collecting. Keep writing and keep astonishing us, Sia! – Sushmita Sen Gupta

How this one-of-a-kind will benefit children:

Inculcates Moral Values

The Mahabharata has a lot of deep spiritual truths that teach us how to behave with others and with ourselves while also giving us some insights into understanding cosmic laws. The book teaches children about karma (actions have consequences) which is one of the most important moral values that one should be following in their lives to lead a peaceful life.

The Mahabharata is a story of a great war. It is the story of an epic that reveals the journey of a human being from childhood to adulthood. 

The children who read Mahabharata will get moral values from this epic like empathy, kindness, forgiveness and humility.

The story of Mahabharata teaches us that even when we are faced with great adversity or challenges, nothing can stop us from being good human beings and being happy with what we have

Helps Develop a Reading Habit

Reading is important in the development of a child’s mind. It is not just for entertainment but it also fosters their imagination and creativity. Reading book helps develop a reading habit in children. The habit of reading starts right from an early age when kids are just starting to learn how to read, or even before that when they are listening to the story being read from a book.

The reading habit develops when a child starts connecting words with visual images in their head. This connection helps them to read faster and easier in the future.

Each well-researched, brilliantly illustrated character in this book and event has been brought to life through easy-flowing rhymes that touch the very core of the heart.

In the end, reading books is an excellent habit to begin in your child’s life and will help them grow into a well-rounded individual.

Adds new words to the child’s vocabulary

A study, published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology, has found that reading books like Mahabharata can help children learn new words. An experiment was conducted with 60 schoolchildren aged between 8 and 13 years from Mumbai. The study found that after reading such books, there was a 2% increase in vocabulary as well as word identification skills and there was an improvement of around two months in reading comprehension level.

Reading such books could also assist children to gain cultural exposure to ancient Indian history and culture.

Every child grows up with stories and more often than not, the words in those stories are new to the child. Mahabharata is one such story which provides a deep insight into the life of Indian people.

This is not just a book series but also a library of information about Indian culture and traditions. It has as much relevance to modern day India as it did in ancient time.

Enhances Knowledge

Reading Mahabharata is a great way to introduce children to an ancient epic and teach them about cultural heritage.

The Mahabharata is an Indian epic written by Vyasa, who is believed to have written the epic in the 4th century BC. 

It’s said that reading Mahabharata enhances knowledge in children because it makes them familiar with their culture’s history and values, which will shape them into responsible citizens as they grow up

Buy The Mahabharata in Rhyme Illustrated Indian Epic Hardcover on Amazon. With beautiful illustrations, and a rhyming text, this book is an entertaining read and an excellent gift idea for anyone interested in The Mahabharata.

Order on Amazon.

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