Aru Shah and the End of Time is a young adult novel by Roshani Chokshi that debuts this Sunday in the No. 2 spot on The New York Times Bestseller list for young readers. Paramount Pictures won the auction for the movie rights, seeing the potential for this franchise that is a cross between Wizard of Oz and Coco, with a hint of Night at the Museum.
Karen Rosenfelt is producing.
Paramount and Netflix were the final two studios in the auction, drawn by the global appeal and magic premise that could jumpstart a franchise.
The title character is a 12-year old girl of Indian descent, who lives at an annex of the Museum of Ancient Indian Arts and Culture. She is known to lie to her classmates at a rich Atlanta private day school to view her traditional wardrobe as exotic, not freaky.
While most of her declarations are fibs, the one that is most interesting to her classmates is that she owns a cursed lamp that can end the world, despite her mother’s warnings of lighting the Lamp of Bharata in the Hall of the Gods.
When some of her classmates show up at her doorstep to light the lamp, Aru caves. Out comes the Sleeper, known as the Lord of Destruction, determined to end the world unless the youth manage to stop him.
The novel taps into the world of Hindu mythology and its figures who are deployed to help the young heroine on a journey, complete with contemporary pop culture references and an exploration of karma and reincarnation. Aru becomes proficient with a bow and arrow as well
Rosenfelt’s credits include the Twilight Saga and Percy Jackson. There is speculation that Hasbro’s Allspark Productions will be involved as well. The novel is the first from ‘Rick Riordan Presents,’ the new Hyperion imprint spearheaded by the author of the Percy Jackson series.
The deal was made on behalf of the Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency by Hotchkiss & Associates.
How incredible does this YA novel sound? I’m sure it’ll look even better on the big screen someday. Let us know what you think!