A new book by Bhakti Mathur always causes much excitement and anticipation! In 'Amma Tell Me About the Avatars of Vishnu, Part 1,' the author returns to verse and the result is spectacular. Written in a rhyme scheme that engages young readers and draws them in completely, this book narrates the story of Lord Vishnu's first avatar, the Matsya avatar. The result is magic. Bhakti does wonders with this format, as evidenced by the love that parents shower on the 'Amma Tell Me About Krishna' trilogy and of course, on the 'Amma Tell Me About Hanuman' book too. In this book, Klaka and Kiki are back! It is Janmashtami and the children are enjoying the celebrations immensely. When it is time for bed, they ask for their customary story and their mother narrates the story behind Lord Vishnu's first avatar. What a wonderful book this is and how exciting it is to read it with your children! It has everything - adventure, great storytelling, and action verse too (kids love those, so do adults). Bhakti brings so much into her narration. She subtly shows us how the different avatars trace the evolution of life on earth. When Manu's fish becomes bigger and bigger, we wait with bated breath to see what he does next. This is the stronghold of stories that are rooted in the mysticism of the past - children are engaged so deeply that they consider so many elements of the story. Bhakti brings in the story of the Matsya avatar from the Bhagavata Purana as well and how Vishnu took the form of a fish to slay the demon who stole the Vedas and to restore them to Brahma The Matsya story mirrors other famous stories of famous floods and rescues that we have read in other cultures. Matsya is the first avatar and the book ends with In the end, the boys ask - why did all creatures have to die? But Amma explains, this is sad - but the circle of life.