Somewhere in the dingy lanes of north Kolkata, a young girl born to a family of idol-makers learns to carve goddesses with her own hands, a right that her artisan father had reserved for her brother. But, years later, when Ira Chatterjee—a breezy, jet-setting ethnographer born in the same neighbourhood—comes looking for the girl, no one knows where to find her.
Elsewhere, in the middle of America, Ira lives with her friend, Fasahat Zaidi, a poet, translator, but mostly, a raconteur extraordinaire from Lucknow. One day Fasahat is reciting ghazals at a bar in a saree, another day he is emailing Ira outlandish tales starring the likes of Mir and Insha. Until one day he goes mysteriously missing and no one can tell what became of him.
Determined to find those who nobody remembers, Ira embarks on a
labyrinthine journey, a chimera-chasing adventure, only to confront her own state of oblivion.