The Tales of Jahani: Daughter of Nomads
First moon of Summer 1662: fourteen-year-old Jahani lives peacefully in the village of Sherwan. But havoc is brewing in the Mughal Empire with tyrants and war lords burning villages in their quest to rule the northern kingdoms. After an assassin strikes in a bazaar, Jahani discovers her life is not as it seems. Before long, she is fleeing with her mysterious protector, Azhar.
Will their journey to the Qurraqoram Mountains lead Jahani to danger or to her destiny?
Themes: Asian content, belonging, identity, resilience, courage
Award: Children's Book Council Notable Book 2017
Queensland University Press, Australia
Check out my writing process and thoughts from my journal (History to Fantasy) while I was writing and rewriting Daughter of Nomads & The Leopard Princess.
What people are saying
I’ve never read a Rosanne Hawke book I have not enjoyed: they are carefully researched; the sense of setting (often Asian) is always exceptional; she effortlessly melds fantasy with reality and her writing is masterful. This series takes young readers on a journey to the 17th Century Mughal Empire where we met fourteen-year-old Jahani, a redhaired, blue-eyed girl whose simple village life is about to become anything but simple. Jahani is an authentic and relatable character and young readers will feel genuine concern for her as she embarks on a quest through treacherous terrain and majestic mountains to discover her destiny.
Megan Daley, Children's Books Daily
Highly cinematic in quality, and reminiscent of the tales of the Arabian Nights, Daughter of Nomads introduces a heroine of real substance for young adult readers, and an unfolding story which is sure to keep fans of the series on the edge of their seats, and coming back for more.
Brydie Wright, Creative Kids Tales
As I opened Daughter of Nomads and began to read, the atmosphere of smoke and spices, creatures and people, perfumes, fabric, and a warm, loving home filled my senses. I could almost taste the spices on my palate, and warmly coloured fabrics clothed my imagination.
Soon, however, the comfort and trust of that home melted away, and a landscape of unfamiliarity and danger formed in its place. Jahani – a girl only my own age – is forced to flee from her village to discover who she really is. The uncertainty of her belonging infuses an overpowering sense of loneliness into the story, and her yearning for adventure, entwined with fear for the future, creates a woven tapestry of emotion and self-discovery.
Amidst this tension, valleys of wild flowers, and lakes of the deepest blue bring breaths of serenity to the fearful heart, and exotic wildernesses made me feel homesick for a place I’ve never been.
The tale of the Daughter of Nomads is seasoned with thought-provoking messages which seem to mirror our own society. As Jahani’s eyes begin to open to the outside world, from which she has been so carefully protected, she learns of the importance of justice in a land of differing races and religions.
Dreams and childhood memories bring humanity to this story, while regal snow leopards, flying carpets and fairy meadows add a wisp of magic. As I read, I was taken on a journey to a place filled with rich scents, carpets of deep saffron and landscapes of aching beauty. Thank you, Rosanne, for taking me on this magic carpet ride.
Tahlia Williams, 14 years
Jahani is a feisty heroine: she is adept with a sword, a fine horse rider, and a heart breaker –winning the hearts of the two handsome heroes. Through her adventures, she (and therefore the readers) learn about the history of her time: the different cultures and customs, the stories and the languages of the time. I particularly enjoyed reading about the clothes Jahani wore, the food she ate and the customs she observed, each time she experienced a new community.
Daughter of Nomads includes maps, information on the languages spoken at the time and a glossary of words used in the text.
Katy Gerner, Reading Time