She was born and raised in India as a daughter of an Indian Air Force pilot, who died in a crash while on duty. The family then moved to Bangalore where she collected books eagerly. She then migrated to the United States for graduate studies at the University of Delaware in economics.
Her first novel The Twentieth Wife is about how a young widow named Mehrunissa, daughter of Persian refugees and wife of an Afghan commander, becomes Empress of the Mughal Empire under the name of Nur Jahan. Her second novel The Feast of Roses is the sequel to The Twentieth Wife. She is also the author of The Splendor of Silence, historical fiction set in a fictional Indian princely state just before Independence (1947).
She is married and lives in Seattle, Washington with her husband and daughter.
- Washington State Book Award for The Twentieth Wife in 2003.
Taj Mahal trilogy
- Twentieth Wife (2002)
- The Feast of Roses (2003)
- Shadow Princess (2010)
- The Splendour of Silence (2006)
- In the Convent of Little Flowers (2008)
- The Mountain of Light (2013)
- Works by or about Indu Sundaresan in libraries (WorldCat catalog)
- Indu Sundaresan official web page
- Essay by the author
- Uma Girish "An Interview with Novelist Indu Sundaresan" California Literary Review, 3 April 2007.
- SAWNET profile: Indu Sundaresan.