Title: Sita's Curse : The Language of Desire
Author: Sreemoyee Piu Kundu
About the story: Somewhere, behind closed doors, in her solitary world; somewhere, under the sheets with an indifferent lover; somewhere, is a woman who will not be denied. Trapped for fifteen years in the stranglehold of a dead marriage and soulless household domesticity, the beautiful, full-bodied and passionate Meera Patel depends on her memories and her flights of fancy to soothe the aches that wrack her body; to quieten an unquenchable need.
Until one cataclysmic day in Mumbai, when she finally breaks free... Bold, brazen and defiant, Sitas Curse looks at the hypocrisy of Indian society and tells the compelling story of a middle-class Indian housewife’s urgent need for love, respect, acceptance and sexual fulfillment.
Sita’s Curse is the story of a sensual Indian woman, Meera Patel, stuck in a loveless marriage daring to find pleasure outside the confines of her bedroom. Meera, who often plays the role of Sita in Ramayana, performed in her village, believes that Ramayana wouldn’t be relevant if Sita had not been kidnapped and Sita was just paying the price for a desire that was not even hers. What if the man who destroyed her was the one who desired her the most?
My Review: Sita’s Curse is being mooted as the first among its kind, to brazenly speak about a topic that is usually discussed in hushed tones behind closed doors of houses- sex, a woman’s unfulfilled desires in a marriage, adultery and incest.
And for that alone the author deserves to be acknowledged and appreciated. But if you ask me how much I, as a reader, enjoyed reading this book, then I would, unfortunately, have to say that I was a tad disappointed. When reading this book I had this edgy feeling that Meera was portrayed as more of a sensual woman with this unquenchable desire and most of her relationships with the men in her life were clouded by her passion.
The only chapters I enjoyed reading were when Meera tries to adjust to her new life in Mumbai and her husband’s family. After few years, Meera connects with the real life in Mumbai when she starts going out with her friends from her English course but then a tragedy strikes and changes her life in a way that she never thought possible.
The inability of Meera’s husband to sexually satisfy her and the constant humiliation by her husband and her co-sister, wilts her each day, dying a slow death of suffocation and stifling.
The sex in the book is not exactly titillating but what drew me is the mindset of the good-old, subservient, middle-class wife, who craves the power to control, to triumph over her husband and yet at the same time to serve and be acquiescent.
Verdict: Worth a read for brazenly bringing out the taboo topic of sex and adultery in the open. Negatives- Too much of sex that does nothing much to forward the plot and tends to get dreary at times (Never imagined that I would say that, but there I said it, ok? J )