The Sister of My Hear and The Vine of Desire by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni.
I borrowed these books a few years back. But I never read them and returned them back. I borrowed them again this week. And when i started reading I could not put them down. The Vine of Desire is a continuation from Sister of My Heart. Even though both books are great i prefer the Sister of Heart. In the Vine of Desire, the writing style changed which I found at times hard to understand.
These books is about the life of two cousins, Sudha and Anju. From the moment they were to the part they got married and to the part where it ended with a new beginning for both women in different ways. The closeness did reduce as time went by. But the love remained as deep rooted as it was from the beginning. There were other characters too in this book.Ramesh: Sudha’s husband, Asoka: Sudha’s ex-lover, Sunil: Anju’s Husband, Lalit: Sudha’s friend, Singhji: Sudha’s Father, Gauri Ma: Anju’s Mother, Nalini: Sudha’s Mother and lastly Pishi Ma: Gauri’s sister-in-law.
There were other minor characters too who were part of lots of twists in these books. One point that kept coming back in this book was that beauty is curse. Even when you run away from men, they kept coming back. And one fine(unlucky) day, you would make a mistake you would regret your whole life, breaking lots of hearts. And also another point that was brought out in this point was that, men they too have opinions in many things. They also feel emotions: anger, sadness and many more. But they dont show it. Maybe they think that this way things wont get complicated. No need to explain what you feel and why you feel it. No need to go through arguements…
I especially liked Sudha in this book. The reason is simple. I feel that that is the closest picture I can ever find to define a woman. I have heard many describe women as being fragile and yet strong. They docile wen needed and fierce wen they realise that something that they love is going to be endangered. All these describes Sudha to the dot. Then comes the Sudha who wants adventure in her life. Just like her father. And just like her father, she ends up hurting the one person she loves the most. At the end of the book, you would realise that Sudha had alot in common with her father then she realised.
These books made me think a lot. Made me question things. At one point, Sudha would leave her husband and get a divorce. In the pass, it was rarely heard of. A woman leaving her husband and getting a divorce. When this is happening, Sudha’s mother would say, wen you step over the boundary that is drawn coz of a marriage by getting a divorce, you wont feel remorse for the “immoral” things that you will do. I wonder whether it is really true or what. When you break a broundray set by the society, you would not feel that you need to control yourself anymore. Is it true?? This breaking, does it allow you to do more mistakes in your life??
Anyways I better stop now..before I go on and on and on about these books..Do read these books.