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Download The Mistress of Spices epub

by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Magical, tantalizing, and sensual, The Mistress of Spices is the story of Tilo, a young woman born in another time, in a faraway place, who is trained in the ancient art of spices and ordained as a mistress charged with special powers. Once fully initiated in a rite of fire, the now immortal Tilo--in the gnarled and arthritic body of an old woman--travels through time to Oakland, California, where she opens a shop from which she administers spices as curatives to her customers. An unexpected romance with a handsome stranger eventually forces her to choose between the supernatural life of an immortal and the vicissitudes of modern life. Spellbinding and hypnotizing, The Mistress of Spices is a tale of joy and sorrow and one special woman's magical powers. Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, born in India, is an award-winning poet who teaches creative writing at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, California, where she also serves as president of MAITRI, a helpline for South Asian women. In 1995 her short story collection Arranged Marriage was awarded the PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Prize for Fiction, the Bay Area Book Reviewers Award for Fiction, and an American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation. Her fourth poetry collection, Leaving Yuba City, was published by Anchor in August 1997.
Download The Mistress of Spices epub
ISBN: 0385407696
ISBN13: 978-0385407694
Category: Literature
Subcategory: Contemporary
Author: Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
Language: English
Publisher: Doubleday; 1st ed/1st printing edition (1997)
Pages: 317 pages
ePUB size: 1882 kb
FB2 size: 1588 kb
Rating: 4.5
Votes: 487
Other Formats: docx mbr txt lit

This book is haunting me. Recommended by a friend of mine, I was excited to read it since I enjoyed Before We Meet the Goddess so much. It was the one book that I took with me on vacation. The rhythm and cadence of the language really sets the tone and shapes the main character. The story is fantastical and the language, if you follow it, leads you along as if it is telling you a myth or a legend. It someone makes the story more poignant. It also allows the story to shift back and forth between past and present until about a 1/3 of the way through, when it shifts firmly into the present. I really liked the story with the exception of the end. For some reason it did not flow for me. Maybe it is simply the disruption of a path that the story has been heading down for many pages that I find jarring. Regardless, it brings into sharp relief the impact that other people’s stories can have on your own. The result is, as I said, haunting.
This book was difficult for me. The author is a brilliant writer, full of imaginative and descriptive settings and characters. However, it required a good deal of slow and concentrated reading for me to try to figure out what was happening (and much of the time I did not succeed). The closest I can get to understanding the characters and the plot is that the book may be an extended metaphor for the spiritual and superstitious beliefs of the Indian culture or perhaps a philosophy of the nature of life put in a mythical setting.
This is the story of Tilo, a young woman who has been trained in the ancient art of spices and ordained as a mistress charged with special powers. As the mistress, she inhabits a crone's body, but the man who falls in love with her can see her the way she really is through her eyes.
As one of the reviews says it is a marvelous combination of myth and romance. After some puzzlement with the story line, I really enjoyed this book. I thought it was interesting that as the mistress she was not allowed to leave the shop. I have a personal problem with any additional restrictions being place on women, even in this context. But, on each occasion that she went beyond her limitations as a mistress to help someone nothing really bad happened to her, so I guess "its all good". Has anyone used any of the spices mentioned in this book? They sell Fenugreek here in the Commissary, but the bottle does not say what its used for, in the book it says its "renders the body sweet again, ready for loving."
Divakaruni's prose is as sweet and spicy, as teasing and searing as poetry. Open to almost any page and there is a passage there where the words just seem to dance on your tongue. Oh, to be able to write like this!

Behind the obvious story of a woman inhabiting creaky bones and old dry skin, who has magical powers to heal, is an allegory: Of the heavy, sometimes cultural, shackles on women and how the ones with strong enough passions overcome them. In this case, it is forbidden love.

I might have given this a five if I had not read another book by the author:The Palace of Illusions: A Novel. To me, even better.
Pure poetry. Magical words. Mystical insights. There is also a good plot, likable characters and a look into a different culture and perspective. Mistress of Spices should be on every book club list. I originally read the book several years ago. I bought this copy for my dear daughter-in-law. It is a used book and turns out it is autographed. Another Gift. Read the sample. You won't be sorry if you love words.
I read this a number of years ago. One of my favorite books. A little magic is woven into the story. Nicely written. I just purchased another copy to give as a gift.
I loved this book it is creative and such a fun read. I love spices and it is fun to hear how the mistress uses them, it brings back a little of the magic, I believe, we all yearn for.
Not as good as her other two books that I read. It was a little to slow for me. (Sisters of My Heart and Before we Visit the Goddess. However it won;t change my mind about reading any future books she writes.