The Yoga of Max's Discontent: A Novel Hardcover – May 3, 2016
|New from||Used from|
"The Paper Magician" by Charlie N. Holmberg
From the imaginative mind of debut author Charlie N. Holmberg, The Paper Magician is an extraordinary adventure both dark and whimsical that will delight readers of all ages. | Learn more
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
“To the world, Max Pzoras is a winner—driven and successful. But the outward trappings of success can no longer hide his lack of inner grace. Max knows it, so he goes in search of his true purpose in India, where secrets are revealed and awe awaits. In elegant prose, with an energy that sustains and inspires, Karan Bajaj has written a novel to treasure. The characters and story he spins will leave you breathless, along with the knowledge that the spiritual journey of a lifetime begins with a single question.”—Adriana Trigiani, New York Times-bestselling author of The Shoemaker's Wife
“Karan Bajaj weaves a modern day epic you simply will not forget. He writes clean, simple prose that zips so fast you'll forget you're reading. He transcends his outlet and sends his creative heart directly into yours. Incredible.”—Neil Pasricha, New York Times-bestselling author of The Happiness Equation and The Book of Awesome
“A beautifully rendered epic journey… Transcendent yet readable, spiritual yet wildly and deliberately accessible, the novel works on many levels and excels at them all.”—New York Journal of Books
“From the snows of the Himalayas to the droughts of southern India, as varied as the subcontinent’s locations are its characters, including freewheeling young bikers and ageless yogis whose silences last for decades. Bajaj guides the reader along on a pleasurable journey.”—Publishers Weekly
“Riveting… Beautifully written, powerful in its deliverance and giving in its message, The Yoga of Max’s Discontent is one book that deserves to be read.”—Fiction Foresight
“Remarkable. Siddhartha changed my life but The Yoga of Max’s Discontent is something more than Hesse. It is a novel profoundly relevant to our times, to a generation that is more concerned and attuned to moral and spiritual values than previous generations.”—Impakter Magazine
“In a literary market flooded with shallow yogic adventure stories both fact and fiction that promise little more than sensationalism or entertainment, here comes an important, authentic, believable, riveting account on the level of Hermann Hesse or Victor Frankl. This is a superbly written meditation on effort and grace, a do-or-die quest for spiritual transformation, a journey from darkness to light, and a psychological thriller, which strips away artifice in a relentless quest to discover meaning and shows us how the lotus can rise from the muck of a Bronx sewer to blossom calmly in the cool Himalayan moonlight.”—Sharon Gannon, co-author of Jivamukti Yoga
“Filled with adventure and excitement. A quest for answers that bother all of us at some level.”—Times of India
“An instant bestseller. One man’s epic quest to merge with the universal oneness.”—India Today
“A special story. Engaging, convincing, and highly readable. Keeps the readers engrossed till the very last page.”—The Statesman
Shortlisted for the Golden Quill Award
Shortlisted for the Teacher's Achievement Award
Shortlisted for the Crossword Book Pick of the Year
About the Author
- Publisher : Riverhead Books (May 3, 2016)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 336 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1594634114
- ISBN-13 : 978-1594634116
- Item Weight : 1.08 pounds
- Dimensions : 5.8 x 1.1 x 8.55 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #238,859 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The main plot is not original- an American named Max is looking for the meaning of life and goes to India to seek answers and gurus. Nothing special there, Westerners have been obsessed with India at least since the Beatles made Transcendental Meditation cool and hip.
But What I love is that the teachers (gurus) who influence Max are not presented by their big ashrams or talk shows or vast knowledge of the Vedas. I am turned off by yoga teachers engaged in a battle of my-guru-is-better-than-yours or worse have the stories of the Gods mixed up. But here the Gurus are depicted by HOW they live. There's not a long discourse on Advaita Vedanta or Tantra. Somehow the author is able to explain the essential beliefs of Hinduism without it sounding like a religious sermon, instead concepts such as karma, reincarnation, enlightenment are presented as aspects of life that humans experience wether they are Hindu or not, these teachings are Universal, but they are presented in the context of Yoga as a quest for enlightenment... which is what Patanjali calls Samadhi...then the Seeker discovers his own true splendour. This book is just that- the sloughing off of the layers of the false self so that one can behold his own true self. \\
Having traveled through both the North and the South of India, I have seen the faces of these glowing Yogis... you can recognize the true ones- there really is a light in their eyes, and they really do glow. Didn't Moses have to put on a veil after he received the 10 Commandments from God? Although I haven't seen anyone walk on water, I believe Yogis can and have attained these sides, but the true ones will never reveal , they are merely indications that the Yogi has masted the forces of nature through the powers of the mind. Jesus himself said if you have faith the size of a mustard seed you can move a mountain, and yes he walked on water too.
I am thrilled at how this book restores the dignity of Yoga. It presents Yoga as it is really is- but leaves you to make your own conclusions about how to live out your own Yoga. Again a fresh perspective where many Gurus (western and eastern) are not really making people free because they teach that this or that method or mantra or discipline is the only way. Ultimately we each have to find our way.
I predict This book will be standard reading for Yogis of the future, next to Autobiograpy of a Yoga and Light on Yoga. A masterpiece and a MUST READ for anyone that is seeking true Yoga (without Lululemon, expensive Yoga mats, and over-glorified handstands).
The story revolves around cliche after cliche, deus ex machina after deus ex machina, with pepperings of wannabe-spiritual BS.
Just as the protagonist clunkily meanders around India, scratching and clawing his way to pseudo-philosophical answers, so too does the author beg and plead for a more meaningful story hidden beneath trite ideas and weak writing. None of the ideas are new, none of the ideas are interesting, and the character is as dull, unsympathetic, cliche, and unrelatable as can be.
A prime example of an author desperately trying to be a best seller. Well good on him, he wins.
The only reason I didn't give it a 1 star is because the concept was interesting enough to string me along. Better ideas, better writing, and a better protagonist would have made this book palatable. Unfortunately, as it currently exists, it is far from it.
The book itself is nicely crafted. The description is vivid and compelling and the dialog sharp, which made the novel a pleasure to read. There is also a noticeable shift in the main character's perspective based on his experiences as he travels through India. But to start at the beginning...
The main character, Max, grew up in New York City in a dangerous neighborhood. His father died when he was 5-years old, leaving his hard-working mother to raise him and his sister Sophia. He developed survival skills on the street while studying hard enough to attend college and obtain a lucrative Wall-Street position.
His mother’s death prompts Max to re-examine the meaning of his life. He quits his job and travels to India as prepared as possible, only to suffer one roadblock after another on his journey. Friends and relatives simply don't understand. Yet this only sparks his determination to stay the course. With the harsh, unforgiving beauty of the Indian landscape as his backdrop, he works to improve his yoga and meditation practice during his stay at Ramikrishna’s ashram. His journey continues, but not without serious physical sacrifice and soul searching.
The meditative principle of release-of-desire as a way to enlightenment is shown quite vividly as we follow Max’s tortuous journey. Yet throughout this journey Max’s integrity as a human being is not compromised. Through trial and tribulation Max’s struggle mirrors our own, and to embrace it is to embrace our own humanity.
In short, even though I haven't traveled to India, after reading The Yoga of Max's Discontent I feel as though I have, in an very engaging and enlightening way.