The Conch Bearer

The Conch Bearer takes readers to the exotic land of India, where a poor boy named Anad must work long, hard hours to support his family in the wake of his father absence. One day Anad shows kindness to a stranger, not knowing the old man he has helped is really an enchanted healer. When presented with the opportunity to join the healer on a quest to return a magical conch to its home in the Himalayan Mountains, Anad accepts. Along with a young street girl named Nishi, the children embark on a supernatural, life changing adventure.

The Aladdin/Arabian night’s feel the book has makes the otherwise familiar “quest” formula seem fresh. Anad has to overcome obstacles on a difficult journey, and be changed for the better in the process. There are no huge surprises in the story, though the descriptions of the Indian cuisine will tempt the taste buds! I did like the author emphasized through the main character’s example sound moral principles such as loyalty, humility, compassion, and honesty. Along with the spiritual thread of Hinduism, intertwined throughout the story are strong magical elements (talking conch, human transformations, telepathy). Good choice of book if looking to study India through imaginative story telling.

Check out the Time Warp Trio lesson plan titled Dude, Where’s My Karma?

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