The bookseller – Rights – Viking seizes the “magnificent” historical saga of journalist Varagur in a six-party auction

Viking has won a “magnificent” story of three Punjabi princesses by American journalist Krithika Varagur at a six-party auction. Alpana Sajip, deputy editor, acquired UK and Commonwealth rights to The Singh Princesses by Fiona Baird at WME. The publication date is to be confirmed.

The Singh Princesses follows the Bamba sisters, Catherine and Sophia Singh, who were godchildren of Queen Victoria and lived among British royalty as their father, the last Maharaja of the Sikh Empire, had been exiled from India. The sisters would go on to play an important role in late 19th to mid-20th century British and Indian life as suffragettes, staunch advocates of Indian independence, and allies of Jews seeking to escape Nazi Germany. .

Sajip said the story “completely overturns our expectations of race and class in Britain, providing a new perspective and a new kind of narrative story”.

Varagur is a senior speechwriter at Fenway, a communications company founded by former President Barack Obama’s speechwriters. Previously, she was the main correspondent in Indonesia for the Guardian and the FinancialTimes.

Varagur said: “I couldn’t be more excited to write about the Singh princesses, whose stories raise pressing and compelling questions about empire, migration, identity and belonging. I am absolutely delighted that this book has found its way to the UK and Commonwealth with Alpana Sajip and his brilliant team at Viking.

Sajip added: “I was truly blown away by this story. It completely upends our expectations of race and class in Britain, providing a fresh perspective and a new type of narrative story. Krithika is a magnificent writer with a talent for exceptional at finding the sources no one else thought they were looking for, and she brings those amazing lives to the page with a magical touch. I’m thrilled to be working with her to bring this cinematic story to the world.”

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