Sneak peek into the Prophesied Prince

My first historical fantasy, Prophesied Prince, featuring Prince Atul and Prince Aggabodhi from the Land of Magadha trilogy, is taking shape. I have written 10,000 words so far. While readers can read this series on its own, knowing the backstory of Atul and Aggabodhi adds a nice layer to the tale. A new protagonist takes center stage in this fantasy. Sugandha means fragrance, and she is a layer of onions at the start of the series. What will she reveal as the layers are peeled?

The book starts with a prologue, something new for me. It offers a glimpse into what happened at the end of Burden of the Crown. At the start of the book, there is a only a trickle of magic.

Prophecy revealed in the Land of Magadha trilogy plays a key role in this fantasy:

“Queen she will be one day, her name will be celebrated, near and far. Her son will rule the three kingdoms and beyond.”

Exclusive Preorder Discount for my Loyal Readers!

I am thrilled to announce that my upcoming historical romance novel, “King in Hiding,” is now available for preorder! As a token of my heartfelt appreciation for your unwavering support, I am offering an exclusive discount to my beloved readers.

You can preorder your copy of “King in Hiding” at a special discounted price. The price will go up after the launch on June 15, 2023. 

Amid a battle, a chance encounter between a young king and a spirited princess sets the stage for a passionate and unforgettable romance. 

With its compelling characters, captivating plot twists, and lush historical backdrop, this tale will transport you to another time and leave you breathless with every turn of the page.

As one of my loyal readers, I want to express my gratitude by extending this special offer to you. Seize this opportunity to be among the first to embark on this unforgettable journey. Preorder “King in Hiding” now at the discounted price and ensure you don’t miss a single moment of this enchanting romance.

Thank you once again for your unwavering support and for being a cherished member of my literary community. I can’t wait to share this extraordinary adventure with you!

Book Review: The Other Boleyn Girl

This is the first book of Philippa Gregory I read, and it will definitely not be my last. Based on the true story of the Boleyn Siblings, the author weaves a masterful tale, gripping from start to finish.

Some of Philippa Gregory’s readers go on to read my books, and I understand why. Our books depict royal intrigue, a world where women are powerless unless a man bestows them with it. In these historical times, women were like the moon with no light of their own. However brightly they shined, it was a reflection of a man’s power.

In The Other Boleyn Girl, the lack of a male heir plays a central role, and this is a recurring subject in my trilogy as well. One distinction in my novels based on medieval India is the ability of the male royalty to marry many wives. In Tudor England, that was not possible and resulted in deadly rivalry.

I love the choice of Mary as the narrator of this novel, so we can see her progress from her a naive young girl to a woman who understands what will bring her happiness. The author breathes life into this period of Tudor history, and I look forward to reading her other books. Highly recommend to all fans of Historical Fiction.

Have you ever experienced this fear?

“I am scared of marrying the wrong person”: This is a timeless fear. It is normal for such doubts to crop up when considering such a big decision. Unlikely they will turn out to be a vampire or werewolf, whether you desire or dread such an outcome. My characters have a real reason for such an apprehension.

During medieval times my stories are set at, marrying the wrong man could doom a woman’s life. In a culture where marriages last a lifetime, and a woman’s fate is tied to her husband’s, a cruel husband could physically and mentally assault his wife. And usually, there was no recourse for a woman. So my female protagonists are worried about marriage. How they navigate these challenges is a recurring subject in my books.

In the Land of Magadha trilogy, Princess Meera fears marrying Prince Amar. Her courage and ingenuity save her life, but she pays a steep price for that.

In King in Hiding, Princess Lalitha is offered a rare opportunity to choose her groom. After hearing her parents’ story, Lalitha worries about making a mistake. During the period of this story, there is no marriage counselor or divorce to rectify a wrong decision. She has to self-reflect on what she is looking for in her relationship. But the biggest question is will she trust her instinct? Or will she let that fear hold her back from experiencing love?

Using Ramayana to navigate life’s challenges

For centuries, humans have told stories to impart moral values and guide society’s behavior. Ramayana does this exquisitely. The ancient Indian epic, filled with tales to teach people about the importance of morality, ethics, and proper conduct, still resonates with us today.

Rama, the ideal son, loving husband, and virtuous king, has served as a moral compass for generations. While none of us mortals can reach his moral height, he has continued to inspire us to do better.

Sita, his loyal wife, sacrificed her comfort to follow Rama into the forest. She displayed quiet courage while Ravana kidnapped her against her will and held her in captivity. Sita resisted his advances and refused his demands, no matter the threat. And she faced all her adversity with grace and dignity. Her remarkable ability to forgive can teach us to let go of our resentments.

I love these stories, and you will read references to this epic sprinkled throughout my books.

As the birth of Rama and his brothers were announced to the king of Ayodhya, the performers broke into a joyful dance.

Heir to Malla by Anna Bushi

Filial piety shown in Ramayana has a subtle distinction from a son merely respecting his father’s wishes. King Dushyant had granted his wife, Kaikeyi, two boons for helping him during a battle. This is of significance because this portrays a culture where female warriors were present. That should come as no surprise because some of the fiercest dieties are warrior Goddess like Durga. Back to the story, Kaikeyi wants her son Bharatha to rule Ayodhya, though Rama, son of Kausalya, is the firstborn son of Dasaratha. Kaikeyi asks Dasaratha to grant her the two boons, crown her son and send Rama to the forest for fourteen years. When Rama hears of the boon, he agrees to keep his father’s word, though Dasaratha begs Rama to stay and rule the kingdom. In my view, the story conveys Rama’s value for the dharma and his commitment to upholding the principles of righteousness. Rama fulfills his father’s promise to his stepmother, though it comes at a tremendous personal cost. Despite Dasaratha’s pleas and offers to make amends, Rama firmly upholds his father’s promise and accepts his fate with grace and equanimity.

You can see the same distinction in respect for elders. Lakshmana, Rama’s younger brother, is a loyal and dutiful sibling and rarely goes against his older brother’s wishes. Rama, with his virtuous ways, is an easier brother to respect and obey. Vibhishana, Ravana’s younger brother, on the other hand, opposes his older brother’s devious acts. The tale of these two brothers illustrate that the lesson here is not blind obedience to one’s elders but rather adherence to dharma.

Our modern sensibilities might dislike Rama’s test of Sita’s virtue after he rescues her from Ravana. But the different adaptations of this offer us a clue to the culture and norms of those times. Some historians have stated that in the original Valmiki Ramayana, Rama does not explicitly doubt Sita’s virtue or subject her to a trial by fire. However, in some later versions and adaptations of the Ramayana, Rama does express a desire for Sita to prove her virtue and subjects her to a trial by fire to prove her purity. This trial by fire is known as the agnipariksha, in which Sita walks through a blazing fire to prove her innocence. These subsequent changes provide us a clue that the importance placed on a woman’s honor changed over time.

Ramayana is a beautiful window into our past and our present. The way we tell the story today offers an insight into what we hold valuable now. For instance, in modern adaptations, a lot of emphasis is placed on portraying Sita as an equal partner to Rama, rather than a subservient wife. That is a reflection of the place of modern Indian women.

I hope this epic continues to delight and guide young readers.

Prologues: Love or Hate?

I enjoyed the prologue in “A Game of Thrones” by George R.R. Martin. It offered a sneak peek into the White Walker. Of course, we are still waiting for them to show up in the novels.

Do you like prologues?

I started Book One of the Prophesied Prince trilogy with a prologue. It offers a glimpse into what happened at the end of Burden of the Crown. It also introduces Curses, a key in Indian mythology. Of course, since this is fiction, all the magic will get an Anna Bushi twist.

Some of the characters from Land of Magadha are part of this series. While readers should be able to enjoy this trilogy without having read my earlier books, Meera and Jay’s tale is riveting. Meera has always done the right thing, but her one mistake of letting her heart rule her mind could destroy everything she cares about. Jay is groomed to reign until he learns a secret about his family that makes him question his destiny. Read the story of this royal sibling while waiting for Prophesied Prince.

How do you celebrate Spring?

Spring was welcomed in many ways in ancient India. One such is the Vasantotsava festival. Poet Kalidasa describes the festival as a time when the “earth is fragrant with new flowers.” Ratnavali, the classic Sanskrit play by Emperor Harsha, has vivid descriptions of this festival, and I used them as my reference in my latest book, “King in Hiding.”


Near the village square, sweet music rose to the accompaniment of a mellow drum. Young maidens wearing flower ornaments danced to the beat while men wearing Asoka leaf wreaths threw turmeric and vermillion powder on them. The spilled dust caused the women’s saris to appear like molten gold.

“It is the Vasantotsava festival,” he said in a strange tone.

This historical romance story is available as serial episodes in Kindle Vella. I will be publishing two episodes a week. The first three episodes are free to read. If you enjoy them, please give the episodes a thumbs up, so other readers can find them.

I met some brilliant authors

Awestruck at his Ingenious mind

I was spellbound when Anthony Doerr described his childhood with a science teacher mother and how his creativity and curiosity were nurtured. Even now, he seems to approach the world with this mixture of wonder and awe. If you have read the Seymour chapter in “Cloud Cuckoo Land”, where he goes into the wilderness behind his house and discovers this peaceful land that connects him with something larger than himself, that is how I felt listening to Anthony. Afterward, a long line of readers waited to get their books signed, and he took the time to talk to each of us. Friendly, down-to-earth, and gifted. Grateful to have met him.

Inspired and empowered

Bonnie Garmus is a trailblazer. To write a debut blockbuster novel in her sixties is simply amazing. She sounded a lot like Zott, her protagonist from Lessons in Chemistry. Her no-nonsense attitude is liberating to see in a woman because society expects us to conform to its view of our role. What was also inspiring was seeing so many women in the audience who shared stories of this book affected them personally. That is every author’s dream. I hope I touch my readers’ hearts as these two authors did.

Read now in Kindle Vella

I am trying out something new with this book – Kindle Vella. This historical romance story is available as serial episodes in Kindle Vella. I will be publishing two episodes a week. The first three episodes are free to read. If you enjoy them, please give the episodes a thumbs up, so other readers can find them.

The ebook and paperback will be available this summer.