The Little Book of Hindu Deities
by Sanjay Patel, 2006, ISBN: 0452287768
Are you familiar with Hindu gods and goddesses? Have you always been confused by the Hindu stories, legends, and myths? Do the images of the gods and goddesses seem too bright, shiny, or even scary? Well, I think you better pick up The Little Book of Hindu Deities! Sanjay Patel has tried his best (and succeeded!) to make Hindu gods and goddesses accessible to everyone.
Patel is an artist and animator. He turned his skills to drawing Hindu gods and goddesses because he hoped that he could make them less scary and way cuter—easier for everyone to understand and accept. He says he was inspired by Sanrio’s Hello Kitty. He has also turned the sometimes complicated stories and histories of the various deities, animals, avatars, and heroes into easily read, conversational stories and descriptions. He, again, hoped to make the mythology that he grew up with accessible to anyone who was interested in Hinduism.
I love this book. I knew very little about Hindu deities before picking this up. Sure, I had some information about a few gods, like Ganesha, Hanuman, and Shiva, and a few goddesses, like Parvati, Lakshmi, and Kali. But I was always so confused: How many incarnations did Vishnu have? How are Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva related? How does Rama fit in? Why do all the goddesses seem to be the same person? Due to the easy-to-read stories, I have a better grasp on Hindu mythology and I can now turn to more difficult texts to expand my knowledge!
If you’re new to Hindu mythology, this book might spark your interest in learning more. If you’re well-versed, you will still enjoy the bright, fun, cute art that represents all your favorite gods and goddesses. Me? Well, I love Ganesha and Kali. Let me know who you feel drawn to!