It’s release day for A Royal Wedding, written by my alter ego Jeevani Charika. It’s available on all ebook platforms now.
Here are five things I’ve tried to explore in the book:
Feminist princesses – is this possible? Given that we’ve had some many powerful Queens, we know that the royal family tends towards powerful women, so why not have powerful women who want to work make life better for other women? My heroine, Kumari is campaigning for a project that educates women in basic health and hygiene. The hero, Prince Benedict was raised by three strong women (his mother and two sisters). They are both feminists in their own ways.
The press fascination with race and with royalty. The tabloid press coverage of Meghan Markle was borderline racist (sometimes not even borderline – just outright racist). Each chapter in the book starts with a newspaper clipping. There’s a lot about race in there…
Family – Kumari’s greatest conflict and her strongest support comes from her family. Benedict’s family has always got his back. The people we love bind us and support us in equal measure.
The North/South divide and the class divide – this is a very British thing. Kumari is a middle class woman from Leeds. Benedict is an aristocrat from the South. At one point someone suggests that Kumari takes elocution lessons to soften her Yorkshire accent. You can imagine what she says to that!
The importance of inspiring role models – one of my favourite scenes is the one where Kumari realises that she’s become a figure that inspires little girls across the country. It was one of the first scenes I knew was going to be in the book. You’ll know it when you see it. A blue sari makes an appearance.
If you fancy all of that, wrapped in a happy ever after, go check out A Royal Wedding. It’s the first time I’ve written about race/ ethnicity in a romance (and, not-coincidentally, written under my real name). If you like the book, let me know!