Taj Mahal
By Elizabeth Mann
Illustrated by Alan Witschonke

10" x 10"
48 pages, Color

Hardcover US $22.95

iBooks $6.99

A story of love and empire.

Shah Jahan, ruler of India, murdered three of his brothers in his bloody rise to power. Yet when his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal died, the emperor was said to have wept for a week. He expressed his love and grief by building the world's most beautiful tomb as a monument to her memory.

Shah Jahan was the fifth emperor of the Mughal dynasty. The Mughals combined brute force and fierce ambition with an artistic sensitivity and a love of beauty. Theirs was a world where even forts were architectural gems, where emperors had their life stories told in exquisite miniature paintings, where each new ruler competed with the previous one by building a grander palace, fort, mosque and city.

This is the story of a remarkable dynasty as told through its greatest artistic achievement. From the soaring domes, to the marble columns inlaid with precious gems, to the vast gardens, to the perfect symmetry of its design, the Taj Mahal expressed the ambition, power, grandeur, and beauty of the Mughal world.

Nonfiction Honor Book, 2009

"The ongoing Wonders of the World series hits a high point with this dramatic retelling of the construction of the Taj Mahal. Startling details abound: Shah Jahan's founding of an entire city to house all the necessary nobles, the irrigation system keeping flood waters from Mumtaz Mahal's tomb, and the shocking decapitation that brings about the next ruler. The photos of priceless relics bring the story alive, and young readers will love the fold-out Taj Mahal diagram, which resembles a game board. Shah Jahan's excesses helped bring about the demise of the Mughal Empire, and this insightful book will bring readers closer to understanding the meaning of what has been left behind."
Starred Review, School Library Journal

"A beautiful book that highlights a stunning accomplishment in architecture…A double foldout gives an impressive aerial view of the entire complex. Captioned photographs of artifacts and original paintings enhance the well-written text. Beautiful full-page illustrations in the detailed style of Mughal miniature paintings depict scenes of the construction process. A list of important historical dates and dimensions of the building are included."
School Library Journal

Elizabeth Mann lives in New York City with her husband and business partner Stuart Waldman. Formerly a teacher in the New York City Public Schools, she holds an M.S.E. from Bank Street College of Education. She is co-founder of Mikaya Press and the author of The Brooklyn Bridge, Empire State Building, Statue Of Liberty, The Great Pyramid, The Great Wall, The Roman Colosseum, The Panama Canal, Machu Picchu, Hoover Dam, The Parthenon, Taj Mahal and Tikal.

Alan Witschonke graduated from Rhode Island School of Design in 1975. He has won awards from both The Society of Illustrators and Communication Arts magazine. He lives in Belmont, MA with his two sons and his wife, Judith Love, who is also an illustrator. He is the illustrator of The Brooklyn Bridge, Empire State Building, Statue Of Liberty, The Great Wall, and Hoover Dam.

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