Parents' Guide to

Aru Shah and the End of Time: Pandava, Book 1

By Carrie R. Wheadon, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 9+

Flawed but fascinating modern spin on Indian mythology.

Aru Shah and the End of Time: Pandava, Book 1 Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 9+

Based on 1 parent review

age 9+

If you liked Percy Jackson, try Aru Shah

If you've read Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson, you will be in familiar territory with Aru Shah, but this time the middle schooler is dealing with Hindu gods. I really enjoyed the two main characters who are both girls. Flawed (Aru can be a liar) but likable, you will be rooting for both Aru and Mini. I am going to try to purchase this series for my elementary school's library and I would recommend it to teachers as a read aloud.

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (12 ):

Despite problems with the storytelling, kids who love modern takes on mythology will delight in this tale of two Indian American girls who find out they're linked to Indian mythological heroes. Aru and Mini make for deliciously awkward questing buddies. There's Aru with her fear that the only thing she's good at is lying, and Mini who is just as afraid that germs lurk around every corner as she is that a demon wants to end the world. They both come a long way and grow to love each other like sisters by the end. But at the beginning of the story, their lives lack a proper setup: We're rushed into the quest so fast we don't really get to understand these heroines as characters until at least halfway through Aru Shah and the End of Time. The story could also use time with Aru and her mom. Mom and her secrets is the whole reason they're on a quest, and she's barely developed. It's a missed opportunity to deepen the story.

There are more missed opportunities when Aru and Mini are deep in the quest. They pass through so many fascinating places in the Otherworld -- the coolest Costco ever and the Kingdom of Death, for starters. The way these very otherworldly places are written, so spare on place detail, it's hard to picture them. To truly transport outsiders to this world, the author needs to land us there. Still, by the end of the story the series is under way and another installment already looms. That may be grounding enough for most readers to go on another thrilling adventure.

Book Details

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