Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Palace of Illusions

Hi friends! Here I am again with another novel and believe me it is as exciting as the last one (if you remember ‘The Colour Purple’). Now this novel ‘The Palace of Illusions’ by Chitra Banerjee Devakaruni is another novel that is from the perspective of a woman. And to our surprise it is a retelling of the mythological, world famous epic- Mahabharata and that too from the point of view of Draupadi. And the interesting part is the title which again can be interpreted in number of ways- like this ‘story like palace’ is an ‘illusion’ because of the fact that it is told from the point of view of a woman or it is something that we can only dream of or something to do with a human mind which is a palace of undying, unending illusions!
The Palace of Illusions takes us back to the time that is half history, half myth and wholly magical. It gives us a new interpretation of this ancient tale. The novel traces Draupadi’s  life starting from her birth from the fire, prophecy at her arrival, her swayamvar and subsequent marriage to five husbands and so on. 
Devakaruni has filled various gaps in her novel like what did Draupadi think about being the ‘girl’ who will change history? What was her relationship with her father, her brother, her mother-in-law, her 5 husbands? And lot many questions. This is a brilliant work of fiction and a worth read.
Ms. Monika

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