The daughter of a poor baker in rural Bengal, India, Sabitri yearns to get an education, but her family's situation means college is an impossible dream. Then an influential woman from Kolkata takes Sabitri under her wing, but her generosity soon proves dangerous after the girl makes a single, unforgivable misstep. Years later, Sabitri's own daughter, Bela, haunted by her mother's choices, flees abroad with her political refugee lover--but the America...
Enjoying a sheltered childhood with adoring grandparents but troubled by the silence surrounding her parents' deaths, 17-year-old Korobi is prompted by a love note among her mother's possessions and a fiance's shattering revelation to travel from India to post-September 11 America in search of her true identity.
On her way to visit her daughter on the other side of the jungle, Grandma encounters a hungry fox, bear, and tiger, and although she convinces them to wait for her return trip, she still must find a way to outwit them all.
Tilo is an immigrant from India, and a shopkeeper, who is also the "Mistress of Spices." The spices which she gives to her customers help them to satisfy their needs and desires. Her life changes when she falls in love with Doug, an American man.