The novel traces the princess Panchaali's life, beginning with her birth in fire and following her spirited balancing act as a woman with five husbands who have been cheated out of their father's kingdom. Panchaali is swept into their quest to reclaim their birthright, remaining at their side through years of exile and a terrible civil war involving all the important kings of India. Meanwhile, we never lose sight of her strategic duels with her mother-in-law, her complicated friendship with the enigmatic Krishna, or her secret attraction to the mysterious man who is her husbands' most dangerous enemy.
©2008 Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni; (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
professor. like great and VERY good books, fiction and history, mainly
A fun, albeit shallow, often silly, recounting of the Mahabharata. But you need to know the story to grasp it at all.
Yes, even though the narration could have been better. The Indian names, specially, were incorrectly pronounced and the Hindi/Sansnkrit words seemed to be coming out with a perceptible effort.
Krishna, without doubt. I have read the Mahabharata in several forms, and each version brings out a different flavour to Krishna's role as well as his teachings.
The last chapter describing the final journey was probably the best.
Even though this is not a retelling of the great Epic, its brings out a completely different nuance. It forced me to think differently about aspects of the story that I had always assumed to be a certain way.
Loved this feminist retelling of Mahabharata, a epic Hindu text. Panchali is such a fascinating character in Hindu mythology, and this book really takes the reader through her experience..Beautifully written, engrossing... Couldn't put it down/stop listening.
The narrator did a wonderful job with often difficult to pronounce Sanskrit words and names.
The best book I've listened to so far. I didn't want to turn it off.
I have no idea how this book would be for people who are not familiar with the stories of the Mahabharata. I know them well, so my experience was, rather than learning new tales, reveling in this masterful interpretation. I relished it - the stories from Draupadi's point of view. I love her more than ever after hearing this book, and was constantly surprised by my complete change of opinion regarding some of the situations. For instance, I wanted Draupadi and Karna to sleep together so badly that I told her so aloud at one point. Sadly, she didn't take my advice. The book was a powerful retelling, and is now my favorite version. Sneha Mathan was absolutely fantastic to listen to - her voice is honey and she is a wonderful actor.
Well written, gripping, must-read
This is my first book read by Sneha Mathan
A well written book and nice to read/listen. I have always been fascinated by the epic Mahabharata. Everytime I discover some new aspect from this grand epic and always keep revisiting it from time to time. This book was a completely different perspective from one of the principal and the most enigmatic characters in Mahabharata - Draupadi. I think Chitra hit it right by telling this story from a perspective which has never been tapped before. I think that she has taken Draupadi's curiosity about Karna way too far and delves on it way too much. I am not an expert on Mahabharata but I think Draupadi's obsession with Karna takes it away from the authenticity of the story. But if you can manage to sideline that, you will definitely enjoy this ride.
This book is a fascinating piece of Indian fiction. It is a complex and interwoven story. Given the complexity, this may be a better read than listen unless you can really devote your attention to the story and the characters. The reader is great. Certainly a very enjoyable listen.
I had a very hard time following this story. It seemed to jump around, and a lot of it just didn't make sense. I gave up after about 3 hours. I wish I had used my credit on something else.
This wonderful book tells the story of the Mahabarata from the point of view of a woman within the story. It is vastly different to the origional which has a masculine tone. But it contains all the elements of a timeless tale with great spiritual insight. This is complemented by an excellent narrator. Highly recommended to all.
This book was good even if sometimes the names of the characters started to sound the same.
The ending was especially good with food for thought about death.
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