On Friday, October 14th at 7:30pm Warwick's will host Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni as she discusses and signs her newest book, The Last Queen: A Novel of Courage and Resistance. Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni is an award-winning and bestselling author, activist, and professor. Her work has been published in over fifty magazines, including The Atlantic and The New Yorker, and included in The Best American Short Stories and The O. Henry Prize Stories. Her books have been translated into twenty-nine languages, including Dutch, Hebrew, Bengali, Russian, and Japanese. Several have been used for campus-wide reads and made into films and plays. She teaches at the University of Houston.
She rose from commoner to become the last reigning queen of India's Sikh Empire. In this dazzling novel, based on true-life events, bestselling author Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni presents the unforgettable story of Jindan, who transformed herself from daughter of the royal kennel keeper to powerful monarch.
Sharp-eyed, stubborn, and passionate, Jindan was known for her beauty. When she caught the eye of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, she was elevated to royalty, becoming his youngest and last queen - and his favorite. And when her son, barely six years old, unexpectedly inherited the throne, Jindan assumed the regency. She transformed herself from pampered wife to warrior ruler, determined to protect her people and her son's birthright from the encroaching British Empire.
Defying tradition, she stepped out of the zenana, cast aside the veil, and conducted state business in public, inspiring her subjects in two wars. Her power and influence were so formidable that the British, fearing an uprising, robbed the rebel queen of everything she had, but nothing crushed her indomitable will.
An exquisite love story of a king and a commoner, a cautionary tale about loyalty and betrayal, a powerful parable of the indestructible bond between mother and child, and an inspiration for our times, Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni's novel brings alive one of the most fearless women of the nineteenth century, one whose story cries out to be told.