Set in nineteenth-century British India, Thalassa Ali's dazzling debut, A Singular Hostage, introduced us to Mariana Givens, the Englishwoman who risked everything to save a young Indian orphan from certain death. Now Ali returns to that exotic kingdom beyond the rthwestern frontier, where Mariana will come face-to-face with a different destiny. Two years have passed since Mariana left the walled city of Lahore. But she's unable to forget its haunting scent of roses or her ill-fated marriage to a native-born husband that has scandalized Calcutta society and made her an outcast among the English. Worse still, she bears the kwledge that she will be forced to give up Saboor--the boy believed to be endowed with magical gifts whose life she risked her own to save. Now Mariana must revisit Lahore to return Saboor to his family and request a divorce from Hassan Ali Khan. But how can she say good-bye to the enigmatic man whose love defied two cultures--or the child she's loved as her own? As political and civil strife threaten to erupt in violence, she seeks answers in a world Englishwoman has ever seen. And she's driven ever closer to a secret so powerful that it will change her life--and the lives of those she loves--forever.
Thalassa Ali is an American who married a Pakistani and lived in Lahore for many years, before returning to Boston to become a successful stockbroker. She is the author of two previous novels featuring Mariana Givens, A Singular Hostage and A Beggar at the Gate, both available from Bantam Books. She lives in Boston.