India Fortunes is the sequel to the historical novel India Treasures (2001), which drew widespread praise both in America and in India (where it was published by Penguin India under the title The Mangarh Chronicles).
As with the earlier book, a modern day search for a Maharaja’s legendary treasure weaves together seven novellas of major events and famous persons of earlier eras, bringing India’s rich history and culture alive.
During the treacherous times of the Emergency of the mid-1970s, the hunt resumes through the huge fortress of Mangarh for the remainder of the famous treasure, including the fabulous Star of Mangarh diamond. Vijay Singh, the leader of the searchers, is again in peril of exposure as a secret Untouchable. The Maharaja of Mangarh remains unjustly imprisoned, while his daughter, the lovely princess Kaushalya, confronts the corrupt and dangerous political boss Dev Batra.
And in the seven connected stories of earlier times:
During the 1600s, a master builder forced to work for his nemesis, the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, designs and constructs the Taj Mahal. In 1663, a Mangarh prince who covets a legendary magical sword challenges the famous King Shivaji. In 1699, a Mangarh farm boy helps in the founding of Sikhism. In the Revolt of 1857, a Brahmin priest aids the heroic queen, the Rani of Jhansi, in battles against the British. During the 1930s, a disciple of Mahatma Gandhi and a fighter for the rights of Untouchables confront an oppressive government’s brutal police. At Independence in 1947, the Maharaja of Mangarh fights the currents of history to preserve his kingdom’s place in the new, independent India. And at Partition in 1947, a freedom fighter leads his family on a perilous train ride through hostile territory in a desperate flight to safety.
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