Maximum City

Travel Books: India

There’s a ton of literature surrounding India. Award-winning novels from Salman Rushdie (Midnight’s Children), also from Canadian authors, Arundhati Roy and Rohinton Mistry.

I’d read a few novels set in India: White Tiger by Aravind Singh, and although never explicitly declared as India, the experience in How to get filthy rich in rising Asia, would still apply. (filed as a Travel book: Philippines).

I wanted to read a travelogue of India, someone’s personal experience wandering around. And, as usual, following my eBook catalogue through Toronto’s Library, I had a limited reach. Nevertheless, I found one I really liked by a Canadian author no less:

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I found he lays out India’s history very simply, and with an insight into the conflict between Muslims and Hindus, particulary when the country was divided by the Partition. Also he offers depth into the Mughal Empire and how it was hugely influential in creating India from Shah Jahan’s Taj Mahal, Red Fort and Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi – plus how Delhi itself was borne out of one conqueror’s architectural ideas to the next. All in all, I found it a good reference for developing a working understanding of what I was seeing as we travelled in India. Worth a read if you plan to travel there.

Books on my list

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A journalist follows families in one of Mumbai’s biggest slums – finding examples of resilience along the way. Or that’s what the book blurb tells me. Meant to be good.

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Another Canadian author. Follows the civil war and government crackdown between the 70s and 80s in Bombay (now Mumbai). Won awards – and high praise.

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Another book on Mumbai. About the city’s many facets, and how it all interacts to make it the place where so many people concentrate their time to make a living from below in the slums to up high on the movie screens as part of Bollywood industry.

image One-time war journalist in Iraq, returns again and again to India over the course of 20 years and writes about its effects on him.

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