John Shors’s adventurous stint in Asia included visiting ten countries, climbing the Himalayas of Nepal and exploring the monuments of India. Shors has worked as a newspaper reporter in America and won three statewide awards in journalism, including one for Best Investigative Reporting. Beneath A Marble Sky is his first novel. John’s first five novels, Beneath a Marble Sky, Beside a Burning Sea, Dragon House, The Wishing Trees and Cross Currents, have won multiple awards, and have been translated into twenty-five languages.
In 1632, the Emperor of Hindustan, Shah Jahan, overwhelmed with grief over the death of his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal, commissioned the building of a grand mausoleum to symbolize the greatness of their love. The story surrounding the construction of the Taj Mahal occurs, however, against a scrim of fratricidal war, murderous rebellion, unimaginable wealth, and not least of all, religious fundamentalism ruthlessly opposing tolerance and coexistence between the disparate peoples in the empire.
Beneath a Marble Sky—narrated by Princess Jahanara, eldest daughter of Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal—recounts their story, and her own as well, a parallel tale of forbidden love enduring censure and extreme deprivations. Beneath a Marble Sky brims with action and intrigue befitting an epic era when, alongside continuous war, architecture and its attendant arts reached a pinnacle of perfection.