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Sikeena Karmali

Sikeena Karmali was born in Nairobi, Kenya to Gujarati Indian parents. She was educated in Canada, the U.S., Italy and Egypt. Karmali works in the fields of international development and human rights and currently resides in Montreal. In 1992, some of her poems were published in Montreal in an illustrated artist’s book entitled Places to Remember, featuring silk screen prints by Bernardo Carrera.


A House by the Sea

Montreal: Esplanade Books, 2003.
PS8571 .A843 H69 2003

Publisher’s Synopsis

At the heart of this novel is a young woman’s quest to reconcile her nomadic spirit with an inner longing for a home. Zahra Khan crosses four continents, untangling family secrets and the fateful lives of her grandmothers. She encounters love when least expected and discovers she is not who she imagined herself to be. …


The Mulberry Courtesan

New Delhi: Aleph Book Company, 2019.

Publisher’s Synopsis

In 1857, the shadows are falling thick and fast on what is left of the Mughal empire. The last emperor, Bahadur Shah Zafar, is a broken, bitter man in his eighties who has retreated into religion and poetry. Zafar’s empire extends no further than the precincts of his grand palace, the Red Fort in Delhi, but this hasn’t prevented numerous court intrigues and conspiracies from flourishing within the Lal Qila; these involve the emperor’s wives, children, courtiers, hangers-on, and English functionaries among others. Flung into this poison pit is Laale, a young woman from an Afghan noble family, abducted from her home in the mountains and sold into the Mughal emperor’s court as a courtesan. Fiery, independent and beautiful, the ‘mulberry courtesan’ captures the ageing emperor’s heart, giving him hope and happiness in his last years.

Told against the backdrop of India’s great revolt of 1857, and the last days of the Mughal empire, The Mulberry Courtesan is an epic tale of romance, tragedy, courage and adventure.


Publisher Vehicule Press

Publisher Aleph Book Company