The Palace of Illusions by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni is a luxury. I’ll quote from the author’s website because she says it best: …takes us back to the time of the Indian epic The Mahabharat—a time that is half-history, half-myth, and wholly magical.
This is the story of Panchaali, the wife of the legendary five Pandavas brothers. Here we have a modern retelling through a woman’s view of how the events unfold.
Princess Panchaali begins life with a magical birth in fire and has the blessing of getting an education beside her brother – such education for girls is almost as rare as her miraculous birth. It gives her the foundation to rule and mold a kingdom. Later she is fated to become a wife of five husbands who were cheated out of their father’s kingdom. She becomes the unwilling catalyst to a great war. This is a world of warriors, gods, and fate – who manipulate the unfolding tale.
Enjoy this link to an interview with the author on her publisher’s website http://www.randomhouse.com/doubleday/catalog/display.pperl?isbn=9780385515993&view=qa.
The epic has it all: passion, power, love, honor as well as frailty, deception, and humiliation. Enjoy this multi-layered tale and step back into ancient India.