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What the book is about

Nine-year-old Tanuj loves to listen to the story of Ravana and his ten heads. One night, after Amma narrates the story for the 145th time, Tanuj goes to bed chanting, 'East or West, Ravana is the Best'. The next morning, he wakes up to find that he has grown nine new heads!

Read this hilarious yet heart-warming story to find out if Tanuj ever got back to being a one-headed boy again!




Meet the Characters

tanuj-illustration
TANUJ: He is regular tantrum throwing nine-year old who takes pride in being the class topper since Class 1. Having heard Ravana's story for over 145 times, he is enamoured by the mythological character. 
RAVANA: Bored with life in Patala-loka, he is on the lookout for fun. He is obsessed with being the best -even better than Rama. Not happy with Tanuj being the class topper, he lays out a difficult challenge for Tanuj in order to get rid of his new heads.
illustration of ravana
illustration of amma and appa
AMMA & APPA: Tanuj’s loving but quirky parents, who are forced to act mature and responsible when they would rather shriek their heads off and run!
MR. KHANNA: The Principal of Chunnilal Mehta School, he is a shrewd man who wastes no time in taking advantage of Tanuj's problem. 
illustration of Mr.Khanna




Reviews by Readers & Professional Reviewers


Review by Rhian on Goodreads


This is a charming tale that, despite its simplicity, packs quite a lot in, leaving room for a discussion about pride versus practicality, for instance.

When his mother tells him of the trials and skills of the great Ravana (also known for his intelligence), Tanuj has a moment of hero-worship which culminates in a little pre-sleep chant. “East or West, Ravana is the best. East or West, Ravana is the best. East or West, Ravana is the best!” 
 
Unfortunately, Ravana himself is listening, and he gives Tanuj an unexpected gift. What’s a boy to do when he wakes up with nine extra heads, especially when refusing the gift might offend a legendary, mystical king? This is a charming tale that, despite its simplicity, packs quite a lot in, leaving room for a discussion about pride versus practicality, for instance.


Review by celebrity parent Gitikka Ganju Dhar


My recommendation - MustBuy, Read and then Lend It To Another To Read 

On my travels to tier-2 cities across India, I scour the local book stores that are old for books for my daughter that I may not easily spot in Mumbai. On a recent visit to Agra, I found this ten-headed, 53 paged fantastical story written by Priya Narayanan. I was intrigued. Ten Heads For Tanuj is a story about a boy whose fascination for the King of Asuras results in him waking up one, not-so-fine day with ten heads.  

The story idea is mighty - Imaginative. 
The writing is pretty - Skilled. 
The knowledge gained by a child reader is - Adequate. 
Illustrations by Shamikasdoodles are just right. 
Then, but, phir, I was flummoxed when my daughter asked me what was the Moral of the story?  
I need to analyse it deeper to answer that. Or, maybe every story does not need to have one?

So, my recommendation - MustBuy, Read and then Lend It To Another To Read


Review by Anitha on Amazon

My son and I loved the book. Its hilarious, fun and just awesome. The author has very nicely put across the intrinsic behavior of people in India, concerned more about exams and moving ahead. Its written very well.


Review by Lorna Wilson on Goodreads

I found the plot to be intriguing as it relates to engaging the imagination and students may find humor with Tanuj as he uses his mind to compete with the great Ravana.

In author, Priya Narayanan’s book, “Ten Heads for Tanuj,” fantasy becomes reality as Tanuj listens to his favorite bedtime story, “Ravana the Greatest of all Asura Kings.” Tanuj is intrigued by the story and falls asleep with the fantasy on his mind. To his dismay, he awakens to find himself with ten heads, just like Ravana, the character in the story. However, when Appa, Tanuj’s mother, and Amma, the storyteller, become aware of his predicament, they are alarmed. Yet, everyone endeavors to make the best of it, as Tanuj’s real-life story unfolds, i.e., Ten Heads for Tanuj. 

This children’s story lends itself to mind games, but more importantly wisdom as it relates to giving your best effort, regardless of peer-pressure or competition. Tanuj's strategy for defeating Ravana is proof of that. Moreover, it provides entertainment as educators, students, and the great, Ravana, interact with Tanuj.


Review by Ronit on Goodreads  
 
The trivia at the end of the book is a nice bonus for kids to know more about Ravana. 

The story is about the 9 years old Tanuj. He lives with his parents in India. After being in a festival for Ravana, his mother tells him a bedtime story about him. This was his favorite. Before falling a sleep he thinks about the story. In the morning he wakes up with ten heads just like Ravena. How he and him family are going to handle to situation? Why this happen the Tanuj? Those Questions are going to be answered in the book. 
 
The book shows us an interesting situation and different ways of dealing with it. It gives you a gimps to India's traditions and culture. This story is intriguing and very engaging. The illustration is beautiful. The trivia at the end of the book is a nice bonus for kids to know more about Ravana. 


Review by parenting blog Toka Box 

The book is a great way to look at Ravana and get into his - erm - heads!

Ten Heads for Tanuj by Priya Narayanan is a hilarious, engrossing and completely entertaining story about Tanuj, who idolizes a particular Lanka King with ten heads. One day, Tanuj wakes up to find that he also has ten heads! Apart from being a fun ride through and through, the book gives a voice and a modern context to one of the most intriguing super villains of Indian Mythology. The book is a great way to look at Ravana and get into his - erm - heads!


Review by G J Griffiths on Goodreads

It is often a puzzle to adults about the sources of humour that cause a smile on the face of a little one - or even a giggle from a seven year-old! The book includes some amusing illustrations and there is a simple lesson to be learnt about putting wrong things right.

This story is about Tanuj, a boy, who falls asleep one night and wakes up with ten heads just like Ravana, a great Indian king whose tales Tanuj enjoys so much. The tale continues to explore the kind of problems he would encounter, such as combing his hair and brushing his teeth while in a hurry to get to school. His parents are eager to help because of a bet his mother had with the parent of another child. It was about Tanuj winning the school’s top attendance award. But of course this is not the only problem a boy with ten heads has. He finds one or two small advantages in having this many heads but, after a visit from the mischievous Ravana, he is told of the sacrifices he must make in order to return to normal. One of the things he has to do involves not doing so well in school and when he has a surprising discussion about this with the school’s Principal, Mr Khanna, Tanuj’s problems begin to get worse. 
 
The book is aimed at children around 7 or 9 years of age and I am sure the fantasy of having so many heads would not be lost on them. Some of the drawbacks described by the author might be lost on youngsters, such as unwelcome publicity. However, that may well be counter balanced by Tanuj’ s list of silly conditions that he presents to Mr Khanna. It is often a puzzle to adults about the sources of humour that cause a smile on the face of a little one - or even a giggle from a seven year-old! The book includes some amusing illustrations and there is a simple lesson to be learnt about putting wrong things right.


Review by a young reader Yana Dubey  

I would be very happy to discover that I have grown nine new heads because I could study many subjects for my exams at once!

Ten heads for Tanuj written by Priya Narayanan and illustrated by Shamika Chaves, is an interesting and funny book. I really liked the cover page and the illustrations on it. The cover page is really attractive too! Without reading the book you can tell that it is a nice book. The story is of a 9 year old boy Tanuj. The story begins with the burning of Ravana on Dusshera. One night soon after,Tanuj climbs on to the bed to listen his favourite story of 
ravana from his mother and starts chanting ~"east or west ravana is the best"~before going to bed. When he wakes up, he discovers that he has grown nine new heads. I don’t know why he is sad, because I would be very happy to discover that I have grown nine new heads because I could study many subjects for my exams at once!

One of my favourite characters from this book is Ravana because he is hilarious . My favourite paragraph from this book is page number 47, paragraph #2.

The second favourite character is Tanuj - as I found myself more or less like him. I think every child of this age would be like him only, who sees in his dream what he had listened to attentively… lol. And when we are in trouble, we easily agree to whatever we are asked to do to get rid of the trouble.


Review by author Madhuri

A neat story that brings home and to the class room, mythology and Ravana, of all the characters. And the way I read it, it's also telling us that high-degree competition and standing first in class aren't what school and learning are about. That's the deeper learning from the story!  

Review by Hema on Amazon

Delightful read !! Its amazing how kids are so fascinated by mythological anti- hero.


Review by Sharad on Amazon

A lovely book and an interesting gift to your near and dear young story listeners... A very subtle way to read the character of Ramayana and learn about him while living his way.... Enjoyed it!











Activity Sheet

ravana worksheet
Buy the Book


'Ten Heads for Tanuj' is now available in stores in both
paperback and e-book formats. Click on the link below to buy/ gift a copy to your loved ones.

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harpercollins.co.in
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