Ashwin Sanghi – The Magicians Of Mazda
A fleet of boats dock at the port of Sanjan in Gujarat in 720 CE. They carry eighteen thousand frightened souls fleeing the cruelty of Iran’s Umayyad Caliphate. Chanting Sanskrit-like prayers, the high priest consecrates a sacred fire to thank their god, Ahura Mazda, leading them to a new home and hope. He uses a mysterious substance to spark the flame, but few know of its miraculous properties or provenance.
Centuries later, Parsi scientist Jim Dastoor is abducted from his Seattle laboratory and whisked away to Tehran. The Ayatollah believes Jim is the key to uncovering the ancient relic known as the Athravan Star and his men will do anything to possess it, even murder.
From the ancient ruins of Persepolis to the Taliban camps of Afghanistan, from the womb of an Udvada fire temple to the icy mountains of Kashmir, from the dreadful coffin cells of Tehran to the deathly calm of Diu’s Tower of Silence, Jim and his historian wife, Linda, are sucked into a terrifying chase across vividly changing landscapes.
Deftly navigating between time and geography, The Magicians of Mazda travels backwards, through the epochs of Islamic jihad, Macedonian revenge, Achaemenid glory, messianic birth, Aryan schism-to the Vedic fount from where it began.
This is Ashwin Sanghi’s most gripping and provocative novel yet.