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The Feast of Rosesby Indu Sundaresan
Synopses & Reviews
Mehrunnisa, better known as Empress Nur Jahan, came into Emperor Jahangir's harem as his twentieth and last wife. An "old" wife at thirty-four, Mehrunnisa differs in other ways too--she is the first woman Jahangir marries for love, and from the very beginning of her royal life she fits none of the established norms of womanhood. As clever as she is ambitious, she wins Jahangir over so completely that he eventually transfers his powers of sovereignty to her. But these successes do not come easily to Mehrunnisa--she has to fight for them. She has a formidable rival in the imperial harem, Empress Jagat Gosini, and at court too, as she battles ministers for supremacy. They consider Mehrunnisa a mere woman who cannot have a voice in the outside world, and she retaliates by forming a junta of sorts with three men she can rely on--her father, her brother, and Jahangir's son Prince Khurram: Through it all, Mehrunnisa maintains the love of Jahangir--but must rely on all her strength and cunning to survive in this fascinating tale of greed, love, and power behind a veil.
The love story of Emperor Jahangir and Mehrunnisa, begun in the critically praised debut novel The Twentieth Wife, continues in Indu Sundaresan's lush second novel, The Feast of Roses. Here, Mehrunnisa comes into Jahangir's harem as his twentieth and last wife. This time Jahangir has married for love, and members of his court are worried that Mehrunnisa could exert control over their futures. Their concerns are well founded.
Mehrunnisa soon becomes the most powerful woman in the Mughal Empire in spite of a formidable rival in the imperial harem who has schemed and plotted against her from the start. She rules from behind the veil, securing her status by forming a junta of sorts with her father, brother, and stepson — and risking it all, even her daughter, to get what she wants. But she never loses the love of the man who bestows this power upon her....
About the Author
Indu Sundaresan was born and raised in India and came to the United States for graduate school. She lives in Bellevue, Washington.
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