Beneath a Marble Sky is historical fiction at its best. Well researched and beautifully written this story of the building of the Taj Mahal is a beautiful story of love and its enduring qualities. Since very little is known about the actual story of the Taj Mahal, most of the story is indeed fiction, but based in what facts are known.
The story is told through the voice of Jahanara, daughter of the Shah Jahan and one of his wives Mumtaz Mahal. Jahanara relays the story of the building of the Taj Mahal to her granddaughters. In so doing she tells the tale of her parents great love for one another and her own forbidden love for the architect who comes to build the Taj Mahal after the death of her mother. We also learn the story of Jahanara's two brothers Dara and Aurangzeb who vie for the throne even though their father is still very much alive.
Vivid details make it seem as if you are seeing not only the building of the Taj, but also the harems, bazaars and living spaces of 17th century Hindustan. Also the universal feelings of love, loss and betrayal are brought wonderfully to life.
Absolutely one of the best novels I've ever read! The amazing story of the building of the Taj Mahal and the love that surpassed all other. A story of bravery, romance, determination, hatred and so much more. Truly, this is one of my all time favorite books I've ever read!
"Beneath a Marble Sky" is a beautiful story of a forbidden romance between the Mughul princess Jahanara and the architect who designed the Taj Mahal. The Princess Jahanara, eldest daughter of the Hindustani ruler Shah Jahan, tells the story in flashback form to her two granddaughters. The story is one of great loves, great treachery, and the building of one of the world's greatest monuments, the Taj Mahal. This was a wonderful story which made me want to learn more about the building of the Taj Mahal.
I am a sucker for a well written historical especially when they center around wonderful characters of history. Most of this book is obviously fiction and much artistic lisence has been taken by the author in regards to the real life players. With that said however, this was one of the most lushly written pieces I have had the pelasure to read in awhile.
You feel as if you are in the story with the wonderful descriptions that paint a lavish world full of both beauty and danger. Combine that with a backdrop of one of the most beautiful love stories of all time and you have a book that stays with you look afetr the last page is read.
I enjoyed the inner strength of the heroine and found myself on pinds and needles, anxiously turning pages formuch of the novel. Its definetly one of the best I have read so far this year.
First novel by John Shor providing a historical glimpse of India during the 1600's written from a women's view. This novel tells the story of the building of the Taj Mahal.