Bhumika by Aditya Iyengar

‘At last a Sita I can get behind! A fabulous, feminist reimagining of the old story – Aditya Iyengar’s Sita’s “what ifs” are so great, you find yourself wishing they had space in the original story as well.’ – MEENAKSHI REDDY MADHAVAN

An evocative and intriguing interpretation/introspection of Ramayana where Sita’s voice occupies the center stage and converses with its counter, Bhumika.

bhumika by aditya iyengar
Bhumika by Aditya Iyengar Book Cover

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How would have the Ramayana unfolded if the hero was Sita and not Rama? What happens when Sita spirals into solitary soul-searching and begins to question the significant events of her life? What if, she was not smitten by Rama at the Swamvara? What if, she hadn’t been kidnapped by Ravana? What if, Sita decided to wear a different sleeve than the silhouette of the Queen of Ayodhya?

A bold and proactive tale that engages with the dialogic unraveling of Bhumika, the Queen of this story, the Sita that never married Rama. A cleverly crafted plot that portrays a strong, fearless, and inspirational figure that will captivate the readers of Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni.

Keeping up with his style of deglamorized and defamiliarized mythologies, Aditya Iyengar is back with Bhumika, a unique and engaging take on the characters of Ramayana.


What could Sita have been without Rama?

Spending her last days in a remote ashram, a tired and greying Sita can’t help but wonder, ‘What if . . . ?’

What if she hadn’t married Rama? What if she hadn’t gone into exile with him? What if she hadn’t been kidnapped by Ravana, and waited patiently for Rama to rescue her, ever the dutiful wife? What if she hadn’t returned with him to Ayodhya, only to be later discarded to ‘preserve his honor’?

Until one day Sage Vishwamitra arrives 

 and shows her who she might have been having she not met Rama – Bhumika, a queen who defies convention.

Aditya Iyengar’s latest work is a novel tale of two enigmatic women, Sita and Bhumika, secure in their choices but not defined by them. Provocative, layered, and moving, this is a narrative that will resonate with generations to come.


Aditya Iyengar has been acclaimed for viewing Indian mythological tales – a hugely popular category– through the eyes of often unexplored and peripheral charactersHe writes novels, screenplays, and poetry. His previous books include the critically acclaimed The Thirteenth DayThe Palace of AssassinsThe Broken Sun, and The ConquerorIyengar’s earlier books – The Thirteenth DayA Broken Sun, and Palace of Assassins: The Rise of Ashwatthama – have got excellent reader reviews and critical acclaim.