Rocío G. Davis
Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni was born in 1956 in Calcutta, India. She attended the Loreto School and the University of Calcutta. In 1976, she immigrated to the United States and earned a Master's degree from Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio, and a Ph.D. in English from the University of California at Berkeley. She has taught creative writing at Foothill College and the University of Houston. In 1991, she founded MAITRI, a helpline for South Asian women who are victims of abuse. At present, she lives in San Francisco with her husband, Murthy, and two sons, Anand and Abhay.
Divakaruni's first published works were books of poetry, Dark Like the River (1987), The Reason for Nasturtiums (1990), and Black Candle (1991). Her first collection of short stories, Arranged Marriage (1995), was awarded the PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Prize for Fiction, the Bay Area Book Reviewers Award for Fiction, and a 1996 American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation. This collection was followed by her first novel, The Mistress of Spices, in 1997, which was shortlisted for the Orange Prize in England and was named one of the best books of 1997 by the Los Angeles Times. The same year, she also released another book of poems, Leaving Yuba City, parts of which have won a Pushcart Prize and an Allen Ginsberg Prize. The novel Sister of My Heart, which grew out of the short story “The Ultrasound, ” from Arranged Marriage, was published in 1999 and its sequel, The Vine of Desire, in 2002. Her second collection of stories, The Unknown Errors of Our Lives, was published in 2001. She was awarded a California Arts Council Award in 1998. Divakaruni's work has been included in over thirty anthologies, including Best