Author Krishnarjun Bhattacharya in Ranchi on Sunday. Picture by Hardeep Singh
From a cub writer for an English newspaper to a novelist, 25-year-old Ranchi resident Krishnarjun Bhattacharya has come a long way.
Krishnarjun, who wrote regularly for Telekids, a weekly supplement of The Telegraph as a schoolboy, has come out with his debut novel Tantrics of Old. Released at Calcutta’s Oxford Bookstore on May 30, the 448-page fantasy fiction is published by Fingerprint Publishing and priced at Rs 295.
The paperback is a dystopian narrative set in Calcutta where demons roam free and angels rise from their ashes.
Joining the league of popular fantasy fictions of Harry Potter and Narnia, Tantrics of Old is a roller coaster ride through old Calcutta, uncovering the mystery behind death.
Death in Tantrics of Old gives young tantric Adri Sen a 24-hour notice before it comes to claim his soul.
Born in Calcutta, Krishnarjun grew up in Ranchi and was famous in JVM-Shyamali — otherwise known as M.S. Dhoni’s alma mater — for his storytelling and compèring skills. Krishnarjun — Roop to friends — was a constant supplier of fresh dramatic plots for annual school functions and other programmes.
Mother a doctor and father a corporate employee, Krishnarjun’s parents let him pursue his creative dreams.
With a degree in film and video communication from National Institute of Design (NID), Ahmedabad, and post-graduation in TV editing from Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) in Pune, he is now developing a video game by bagging a scholarship from Khoj International Artists’ Association in New Delhi.
He was taking a break at home when The Telegraph caught up with him. Asked how a dark story like Tantrics of Old came to him, he smiled. “It is a compelling and intriguing enigma of the unknown that mystifies us, making us only more inquisitive,” he said.
Bookstores apart, the novel is also available at Flipkart where readers who have reviewed the book have demanded a sequel.
So, will the young novelist oblige with a part two?
“I have started working on plots. May be next year,” Krishnarjun, trying to hide his boyish smile. The second part of the duology, Horsemen of Old is already in the making and is expected to reach the stands by August next year.