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The Kashmiri Shawl ~ A Historical Novel

An epic journey from the sultry climes of nineteenth-century India to the cosmopolitan chaos of New York City on the eve of Civil War, and then back to India in quest of a kidnapped daughter and a lost, forbidden love.


A nineteenth-century American widow embarks on a daring quest to find her dark-skinned child.

INDIA, 1857: Anna Wheeler Roundtree, missionary wife, flees her husband's pious tyranny, leaving the safety of the Protestant mission in which she's spent most of the past decade. Her timing is bad: the train carrying her to freedom steams into the midst of the brutal Indian Rebellion. She is, however, plucked from danger by Ashok Montgomery, a wealthy Anglo-Indian tea-planter. Together they escape the angry mobs and find the shelter of an isolated mountain cave. There, for the first time, Anna learns the true nature of love.

New York City, 1860: now a successful poet featured in national magazines, Anna Wheeler is astonished to learn that the daughter she bore upon her return was not stillborn, as she'd been told, but has been kidnapped. When Anna hears the baby described as dark-skinned, she realizes that Ashok, the man she'd left behind in the tumult of the rebellion, is the true father, not her blond-haired, fair-skinned missionary husband. In her racially inflamed nation on the verge of its own disastrous civil war, Anna throws respectability to the winds, learns to take risks, break rules, and trust strangers in a determined search for the little girl.

Then a deranged voice arises from her tormented past, making demands that compel her back to India. Anna must confront the evil that sent her running in the first place. Will her daring quest for her child, and for the love of her life, end in triumph or heartbreak?


Most of you know me as the author of the Professor Karen Pelletier series set at New England's elite Enfield College, where the curriculum seems to offer a major in murder. Professor Pelletier is currently on sabbatical, happily sunning herself in the Carribean or sipping vin ordinaire with Charlie Piotrowski in some small Parisian bistro or .... Well, the operative word is "happy." After that bruising tenure battle, she deserves a carefree vacation.

See the MY BOOKS page for more about the Karen Pelletier novels.