Shadow Princess: A Novel

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9781416548799: Shadow Princess: A Novel

The daughters of Emperor Jahangir, Jahanara and Roshanara, plot and scheme against one another in an attempt to gain power over their father’s harem. As royal princesses they are confined in the imperial harem and not allowed to marry. However, this does not stop them from having illicit affairs or plotting the next heir to the throne.
These royal sisters are in competition for everything: power over the harem, their father’s affection (still focused on his dead wife), and the future of their country. Unfortunately, only one of them can succeed. And, despite their best efforts to affect the future, their schemes are eclipsed, both during their lives and in posterity, as they live in the shadow of the greatest monument in Indian history, the Taj Mahal.
With a flair and enthusiasm for history and culture, Sundaresan creates a story full of rich details that brings the reader deep into the world of the lives of Indian women and their struggles for power and consequence.

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About the Author:

Indu Sundaresan was born in India and came to the US for graduate school at the University of Delaware. She is the author of The Twentieth Wife, The Feast of Roses, Splendor of Silence, In the Convent of Little Flowers, Shadow Princess, and The Mountain of Light.

From Publishers Weekly:

Sundaresan (The Twentieth Wife) returns to 17th-century India in this romantic fictionalization of the life of Jahanara, the oldest child of the empress Mumtaz Mahal, Shah Jahan's cherished wife. Mumtaz dies in childbirth, leaving four sons, two teenage daughters and a newborn girl. The grief-stricken emperor seeks consolation in the construction of the Taj, the magnificent Luminous Tomb, while the profundity of his mourning exposes his fallibility to his sons, who begin eyeing his throne. Jahanara and her sister Roshanara choose to back different brothers, and they compete to rule in both the royal harem and their father's heart. Before long, Jahanara is the one who succeeds as the emperor's closest confidante, and he refuses to allow her to leave him to marry. Sundaresan has a scholar's fascination with the period; she's at her best describing the opulent court or the construction of the Taj Mahal. Little is known about the actual Jahanara, and Sundaresan has blessed the princess's fictional proxy with such perfection that readers will be tempted to find her flawed siblings not only more believable but also more interesting. (Mar.)
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Sundaresan, Indu
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Sundaresan, Indu
Published by Atria Books (2010)
ISBN 10: 1416548793 ISBN 13: 9781416548799
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