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A brilliant student from an impoverished family, Kalai Arasi is forced to take up acting in films. She attracts the attention of the reigning superstar, PKB, who becomes her lover and mentor before he leaves films to enter politics.

Years later, when he coaxes Kalai to campaign for him, she meets with spectacular success. PKB wins a third term by a landslide but within days he dies. In the brutal battle for power that follows, Kalai prevails. She seizes the throne to become chief minister of Tamil Nadu.

Guarded, cautious and suspicious of both friend and foe, Kalai's loneliness increases alongside her authoritarianism. She befriends Selvi, a woman who runs a video shop, but Selvi leads her into ever more pompous displays of wealth and power. With intensifying rumours of corruption, the walls begin to close in on Kalai. She is forced to confront the shattering question: Will the public turn against her?

The Queen follows the ascent of a sixteen-year-old girl to superstardom, and her transforma on thereafter into a formidable politician. It tells a scintillating story of power, its triumphs and its perversions, and marks the debut of an audacious new voice.

The Queen by Anita Sivakumaran

  • Estimated delivery 2-3 weeks

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