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Based loosely on the life of Princess Pari Khan Khanoom, Equal of the Sun is a riveting story of political intrigue and a moving portrait of the unlikely bond between a princess and a eunuch.Iran in 1576 is a place of wealth and dazzling beauty. But when the Shah dies without having named an heir, the court is thrown into tumult. Princess Pari, the Shah's daughter and protegee, knows more about the inner workings of the state than almost anyone, but her maneuvers to instill order after her father's sudden death incite resentment and dissent. Pari and her closest adviser, Javaher, a eunuch able to navigate the harem as well as the world beyond the palace walls, possess an incredible tapestry of secrets that explode in a power struggle of epic proportions. Legendary women--from Anne Boleyn to Queen Elizabeth I to Mary, Queen of Scots--changed the course of history in the royal courts of sixteenth-century England. They are celebrated in history books and novels, but few people know of the powerful women in the Muslim world, who formed alliances, served as key advisers to rulers, lobbied for power on behalf of their sons, and ruled in their own right. In Equal of the Sun, Anita Amirrezvani's gorgeously crafted tale of power, loyalty, and love in the royal court of Iran, she brings one such woman to life, Princess Pari Khan Khanoom Safavi. Amirrezvani is a master storyteller, and in her lustrous prose this rich and labyrinthine world comes to vivid life with a stunning cast of characters, passionate and brave men and women who defy or embrace their destiny in a Machiavellian game played by those who lust for power and will do anything to attain it.
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"Expertly woven." --"Kirkus"
"A dazzling historical novel of ancient Persia, a fairy tale of universal resonance, EQUAL OF THE SUN""is a story of love and ambition, loyalty and intrigue, the eternal anguish of a heart--and a country--at war with itself. --Gina Nahai, author of "Moonlight on the Avenue of Faith" and "Caspian Rain"
"Equal of the Sun is a fine political novel, full of rich detail and intrigue, but it's also a thought-provoking study of the intersection between gender and power." --Historical Novel Society
"Amirrezvani's sixteenth century Iran is a world as complex as Shakespeare's London, that seethes with intrigue, passion, and lawlessness, a world where a brilliant young princess, who longs for power denied her as a female, and a servant, with a desire so relentless he half-destroys himself, make a desperate pact to control the government and fate of the country, and in doing so discover their greatest loves and sorrows. In this astonishing novel Amirrezvani reminds us what all human hearts suffer and dare. EQUAL OF THE SUN is an irresistible novel." --Jonis Agee, author of "The River Wife"
""Equal of the Sun" is a page turner, with plenty of gripping moments. Here's hoping Amirrezvani will write many more tales illuminating the incredible history of the Iranians.." --"WashingtonPost"
"A page turner.... Here's hoping Amirrezvani will write many more tales illuminating the incredible history of the Iranians."
"A vibrant portrait of a country in the throes of change, with an extraordinary woman at its center."
Anita Amirrezvani is the author of the novel Equal of the Sun and The Blood of Flowers, which has been published in more than twenty-five languages and was longlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction. She teaches at the California College of the Arts and Sonoma State University.
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