About the book

Mansions of the Moon book coverIn this sweeping, at once epic and intimate, Shyam Selvadurai introduces us to Yasodhara, a woman of great spirit and intelligence, married to her cousin Siddhartha Gautama, an unusually bright and politically astute young man, who will later become “the enlightened one,” or the Buddha. Mansions of the Moon traces the couple’s early love and life together, and then the anguished turmoil that descends upon them both as Siddhartha’s spiritual calling takes over and the marriage partnership slowly, inexorably crumbles. Eventually, Yasodhara is forced to ask what kind of life a woman can lead in ancient India if her husband abandons her—even a well-born woman such as herself. And is there a path she might take towards her own form of enlightenment?

Award-winning writer Shyam Selvadurai brings to life 6th century B.C. India in all its fascinating detail, depicting as well the great intellectual and spiritual ferment of the time that changed human thought, and whose ideas are still relevant today. Selvadurai also captures the intricate web of power, family and relationships that surround a singular marriage, and the remarkable woman who until now has remained a little-understood shadow in the historical record. Mansions of the Moon is an immersive, lively and thrilling feat of literary imagination.


“After nearly a decade, bestselling author of Funny Boy and The Hungry Ghosts Shyam Selvadurai returns with a sweeping new novel set in ancient India. It introduces readers to Siddhartha Gotama – the man who would become Buddha – and Yasodhara, the woman who married him.”
Quill & Quire


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