Sister of my Heart by Chitralekha Bannerjee is the story of two young girls, unrelated by blood, but united by a string of heart.
They were born at almost the same time, but to different mothers. Basudha and Anjali are the two young girls of Chatterjee clan who are different in a million ways but are steadfastly linked in their fate.
Their differences make them even more endearing to each other. They grow up hand in hand, with nothing but the purest love possible between two individuals. Their appearances and attitudes look vastly different to others but they themselves are so intertwined that not even air can pass through them without facing an obstruction.
Chitralekha has given a different color to each girl, making them come alive with one’s fancy for fairy tales and the other’s practicality.
In the first part of Book, Palace of Snakes, the girls are indeed the princesses every Prince would love to die for. But can their friendship stand the acid test of love, will they be happy to live with each shut in her own world and yet having a common link between them? Or will the echo of one’s marital life cause deafening uproar in the other’s life?
The plot thickens in the next part- Queen of Swords- a fitting title for the adult cruel world, one has to faces after the envious innocence of childhood.
The book evoked some of the strongest emotions in my heart. One moment I am smitten with Sudha’s foolish innocence and endearing beauty, and the next moment, I find Anju’s frankness, a perfect reply for this ruthless world.
A book is not just a collection of stories, constructed with words, rather it assumes the importance of a virtual world, where every event happens in front of reader’s eyes, leaving lasting impressions on his mind. And, Sister of My Heart is the best example of the vast influence written words can have.
As I read the book, I relived my own childhood. The memories of innocent, carefree world made me nostalgic with emotions. With Sudha and Anjali I realized that childhood is the best time to live all your fancies, because once you grow up , nothing can be seen through rose tinted glasses. Everybody assumes that monstrous appearance which is ready to engulf you the moment you drop your guards.
This is what happens in the second part of the story. Sudha and Anju try to feel content with whatever fate Bidhatapurush has ordained for them, but inwardly a strange pinch is felt. It is like a broken needle-tip that would not rest till it reaches your heart, make it bleed profusely, ending your life at a fast pace, making the body pale and bloodless.
And, to add icing to the cake, Sister of My Heart had an unexpected climax. The story has not ended, it would continue in Vine of Desire.
Kudos to Chitra Divakaruni for this wonderful tale of love, affection,jealousy and betrayal!