Never has anything divided the love between a daughter and a mother. Not even death.
The Queen of Dreams by Chitra B. Divakaruni is a story about Rakhi, who is a painter and a single mother. Currently she is absorbed in a few things like her ex-husband, Sonny, whose devilish charm she cannot ward off, Jonaki or Jona, her daughter who keeps shuffling between Rakhi and Sonny, her mother who is a dream interpreter and a father, who doesn’t speak much.
The problem? Rakhi’s mother doesn’t want Rakhi to inherit her gift of dreams interpretation. Because she knows what you have to give up to live the art and use the skills for the benefit of people. But her art has been passed on to Jona now, who interprets a dream which not only changes the life of her family but through her paintings, she gives them a preview of a national calamity that will take place in near future..
Rakhi is never close to her mother because her mother always kept her at a distance. But a sudden freak accident which takes her mother away changes a lot. Rakhi discovers her mother’s journals in the cupboard and asks her father to translate the same for her. Each journal entry, each event inscribed on the pages, takes Rakhi close to her mother. Even death is not able to keep them apart.
One of the most intriguing and emotional stories, Queen of Dreams has been by far the best read of October. The book has everything; love, relationships, family, and friends. Chitra’s writing has been fluent and easy to understand and enchants you into the world of a dream interpreter. She has taken special effort in describing how a dream interpreter is trained and how exactly they work, what goes into their minds and how they acquire this skill. After each instance from Rakhi’s current life, Chitra has written an entry from Dream Journal to go along with the upcoming turn of the book. And not just family saga, the book also has common issues that many immigrants face when they live abroad. Swanky new restaurant chains gobbling up Indian business, racism after 9/11 and generation gap between children and parents.
The best character of the book would go to Rakhi’s father, Mr. Gupta. The protagonist Rakhi might be the most intriguing one, but Mr, Gupta has won hands down. A silent father, who gave up everything for his wife as well as the daughter. After Rakhi’s mother’s death, he stands up to guard Rakhi against each and everything. A silent entity, looking over her all the time, all her bad dreams, and ill fate that she doesn’t seem to ward off.
Overall, the Queen of Dreams is a must read for everyone! The only complaint that we have is that the climax was a little rushed. It would have definitely used some improvement.
Apart from that, there is nothing that will make you falter or keep down this book. So let’s enter the Dream World, shall we?