Teen Review: “The Conch Bearer” by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Despite all of the hardships Anand has been through, he still believes in magic. Living in modern-day India with his mother and sister, Anand must work to keep his family just barely afloat after his father deserts them. One day, after wishing with all his might for his life to turn around, he is confronted by a beggar. Taking pity on the old man, Anand gives the beggar his small ration of lunch, only later to find out that the man is a healer with a brotherhood that lives in the Himalayas. They use a magical item called the Conch to to spread goodness around the world. Abhayadatta, the old man, tells Anand the story of the Conch and implores him to help return the Conch to the Silver Valley, where the brotherhood dwells. Anand, Abhayadatta and a spunky girl named Nisha must journey to return the Conch to its home and keep it safe from the evil Surabhanu, who wants to use the Conch for his own benefit. This magical journey, though directed at a younger age group, is worth reading just for the beautifully rich way Ms. Divakaruni paints the story. I hope you can find the adventurous child within you to enjoy this fanciful tale.

Aedan, Central TLLC, 16

 "The Conch Bearer" by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni book review

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