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Good books about India?

(8 Posts)
Mosling Sat 06-Dec-14 21:50:54

Seeking inspiration for a difficult relative's Xmas. She likes India (group travel, but relatively adventurous), any thoughts? Not sure which areas she's been to, probably reportage rather than fiction.

RuinedAndNotorious Sun 07-Dec-14 00:39:28

How about Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo? It's non-fiction, by a Pulitzer prize winning journalist. I haven't read it myself but it's had excellent reviews.
William Dalrymple has written many books about India, again I haven't read them but my sister is a fan.
If you post on the Adult Non-Fiction board in the Books topic, people there might be able to give you some recommendations.

Mosling Sun 07-Dec-14 20:50:55

Thanks Ruined, I'll head on over...

whereisvioleta Fri 12-Dec-14 17:33:43

Dervla Murphy has written some fantastic travel books - she's over 80 now and still travelling and writing. Three or four of hers feature India, her classic, Full Tilt, details her cycle journey from Ireland to India alone, in the early 1960s. Not much of the actual book focuses on her time in India tho, rather on the amazing journey there. Her later book, On a Shoestring to Coorg, details the summer she spent in South India with her five year old daughter, and is wonderful! And then India also features in Tibetan Foothold and The Waiting Land, which come after Full Tilting and are about time spent in Tibet and Nepal. All her books are travelogues and she is hugely inspirational. I would recommend Full Tilt as a starting point - and FT plus the Coorg book together would make a great gift!

easylife73 Fri 12-Dec-14 18:22:41

If you think she'd like fiction, Under the Jewelled Sky by Alison McQueen is set in colonial/post-colonial India and is a very good read. She has also written another book called The Secret Children but I haven't read that yet so can't comment too deeply.

Zebrasandpapayas Fri 12-Dec-14 18:29:56


Zebrasandpapayas Fri 12-Dec-14 18:30:53

Whops sorry just saw that your not looking for fiction. Love shantaram though and the God of small things.

Bunbaker Fri 12-Dec-14 18:41:26

A second vote for Dervla Murphy. I love her travel writing, even though I get irritated by her inverse snobbery about people who prefer their creature comforts when travelling.

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