Dancing with Kali has its moments of brilliance, amidst many literary clichés. The author seems to have written the book, keeping in mind, non-Indian readers; where she goes that extra mile to familiarise us with the Hindu ethos and culture. It raises your intrigue, builds your suspense by the time a two-third of the book is over, and suddenly throws in a lot of revelations.
Any connect between Goddess Kali and any character in the book is cleverly kept under the wraps and Das beautifully connects the dots towards the end. The characters are well-turned out, but the repetitions dampen your interest. The streams-of-consciousness mode is not deftly dealt with, and it makes for a confusing read at various places.
Anu and Meera, for instance, are difficult to differentiate after a certain point of time. A brilliant plot, marred by shoddy editing, the book could have done without all those renditions of the mythological stories to drive the feminist point home. A good read if you skip the excess detailing.
The verdict: FLIP