Natasha Sharma on adding fiction & humour to history

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The Famous children's book Author Natasha Sharma who also wrote Bonkers of the Duckbill Series has now launched the new History Mystery Series of books. she launched her two new books in this series- ' Akbar and the Tricky Traitor' and 'Ashoka and the Muddled Messages' on the 9th of February at the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival!  History for me was all about AD, BC, wars, movements and lots of years to remember. So when Natasha first told me about the book I was very curious on how she has made the series more interesting than my history teacher.

Before I handover to Natasha, just one confession that when I now travel and see the forts, palaces and museums it does fascinate me.

Over to Natasha

Is history all about cramming dates for an exam and learning about a bunch of rather boring people who lived really long ago? With apologies to my teacher, history class honestly made me groan back in school.

Yet here I am, with two hot-off-the-press books – Akbar and the Tricky Traitor and Ashoka and the Muddled Messages, kicking off the all-new History Mystery series.

At some point, possibly when I learnt about the architectural brilliance of some forts and palaces on visiting them, on reading about the quirks of mighty emperors and on understanding how different countries affected each other, I realized what an incredibly fascinating subject history is. I think back to my dry school history textbooks and wish that things had been different.

Oftentimes thoughts and deeds come full circle. My Akbar story grew out of a writing workshop. My editors at Duckbill suggested extending the concept forward to a series, each book centred on an emperor. I was delirious with delight … and truly terrified. My 10-year-old-self was sitting on my shoulder, hissing all through – make it fun even when you tell them facts!

The books in History Mystery are fictional mysteries you will never find in history books written with huge doses of humour. Yet, the stories are packed with facts. At the end of each book, a section titled Fact or Fiction sorts it all out.

As parents, it really falls upon us to show children how wonderfully diverse, rich and exciting the history of our country is and how it connected to the rest of the world. Make it an adventure and a child as young as seven years will be spellbound.

Some Tips while travelling to Historic Places!

  • I take them to at least one monument or museum when I am visiting a place. With a little bit of research, I try and pick a place based on what might interest them as well. Forts and palaces are usually incredibly exciting.
  • I get a guide. Everything comes alive when you hear the story of the place.
  • We go, even if we need to skip sections.
  • I hunt out books that make history fun.
  • You could get them a History Mystery!

Share with us how you make travel interesting. For more books and interesting reads follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

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