Before We Visit The Goddess

Chitra Diva

By Dr. Venugopal K. Menon

HOUSTON: ‘Before We Visit The Goddess’, is Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni’s new novel, the #1 Bestseller in India since it was published.

It is the fascinating chronicle of three generations of women, from the grandmother beginning her childhood in the bustling city of Kolkata, the daughter coming over to America, and the granddaughter establishing a new beginning in the new land of opportunity.

The book is essentially a study in contrast of the three personalities facing their nemeses with the available emotional equipments they gained through their varied environments of upbringing.  The author, deftly ascertains that the saga of Sabitri, Bela and Tara mirrors the feminine intricacies of Panchaali of Mahabharata, the epic five millennia in the past.

The narration is unique, challenging the reader as the story transcends generations, continents and chronological sequences.  The author has intriguingly incorporated the grandmother’s future letters to the not-born-yet granddaughter  whom she will never see, as she contemplates on her own life.

Chitra’s distinct little depictions, slight annotations and her imaginative, tiny intuitions are exclusively inimitable, making her one of the best writers of today.  ‘Before humans came and pushed them to the edges; darkness fell upon her blotting out all eloquence; the dark swayed around her like seaweed, choking’!

The award-winning writer, one of our own Houstonians emphatically establishes why she is one of the 20 most influential global Indian women chosen by the Economic Times.