"Best" English-language fiction by Indian authors?

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"Best" English-language fiction by Indian authors?

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Redigerat: apr 10, 2010, 1:47pm

Lately I've become aware how painfully little I've read by Indian authors and so I started looking around for a list/discussion/compilation etc. that would help me get started by reading the "best" fiction in the English language by Indian authors. I'm not necessarily looking for books about India, though it would seem likely that they would be in the majority (I think). What I'm looking for is some sense of where to get started. What authors are absolute musts?

In the interest of getting things started, I'll post the single list I found. It's from a blog and, while it is undoubtedly subject to disagreement, at least it's a place to begin:

1. Vikram Chandra: Love and Longing in Bombay
2. Aubrey Menen: The Fig Tree
3. Rohinton Mistry: Tales from Firozhsha Baug
4. Jhumpa Lahiri: The Interpreter of Maladies
5. Hari Kunzru: The Impressionist
6. G V Desani: All About H Hatterr
7. Vikram Seth: The Golden Gate
8. Salman Rushdie: Midnight’s Children
9. R K Narayan: Swami and Friends
10. Mulk Raj Anand: Coolie
11. Kamala Markandaya: Nectar in a Sieve
12. Anita Desai: Baumgartner’s Bombay
13. Amitav Ghosh: The Shadow Lines
14. I Allan Sealy: The Trotternama
15. Shashi Tharoor: The Great Indian Novel
16. Githa Hariharan: When Dreams Travel
17. Kiran Nagarkar: Raavan & Eddie
18. Shashi Deshpande: That Long Silence
19. Arundhati Roy: The God of Small Things
20. Raja Rao: Kanthapura
21. Khushwant Singh: Delhi
22. Nisha Da Cunha: Old Cypress
23. Ruskin Bond: The Room on the Roof
24. Gita Mehta: The River Sutra
25. Indi Rana: The Devil in the Dustbin


maj 5, 2008, 7:14am

I have read quite a lot of books from Indian Authors...and U can easily add books like "Sister of My Heart, The Palace of Illusion & The Unknown Errors of our lives" all by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni.
Then Shashi Tharoor is another good author...
Have quite many books (penned by Indian author's) in my collection & am in process of uploading the same.

nov 5, 2009, 10:27am

You've got some excellent authors on that list. I've only read a few of them. I do think Unaccustomed Earth was a superior read to Interpreter of Maladies. I haven't read Golden Gate but A Suitable Boy was a masterpiece.

I couldn't bare The Great Indian Novel. The biggest load of nonsense masquearading as literature I've ever come across.

I haven't heard of Vikram Chandra. I assume it's not the NDTV anchor. I'll take a look at his work.

mar 12, 2010, 8:04am

I agree that A Suitable Boy is the masterpiece.

jul 27, 2010, 11:08am

I have read six of the books on the list above. I don't know if the list is in order but of the three books by Vikram Chandra that I have read, Red Earth and Pouring Rain, Sacred Games and Love and Longing in Bombay, I liked them in that order. One of the stories in Love and Longing in Bombay introduces some of the characters in Sacred Games which I loved (although huge).

I also agree that Vikram Seth's a suitable boy is a masterpiece but Gita Mehta's A River Sutra is one of my all time favourite books. I think I have read it four times.

jul 28, 2010, 7:37am

I second bookslifenmore: chitra banerjee divakaruni is a great author. However, many of her books are centered on the condition of Indian migrants to America, and the difficulties in linking two cultures (and somehow belonging to two culture).
Anyway, despite being based in San Fransisco (if I remember well), The Mistress of Spices definitely has a taste of India!
The Palace of Illusions, being based on one of the Mahabaratah (I do not guarantee the spelling!), is clearly grounded in the Indian culture and is worth reading!

A fine balance, by Rohinton Mistry, is the first indian book I have ever read, and is still one of my favourites!

jul 30, 2010, 9:12am

Shona Ramaya's Flute is also one of my favourite books. Another one is The Buddha of Suburbia although I am assuming Hanif Kureishi is Indian.

apr 9, 2012, 2:16am

Detta konto har stängts av för spammande.

apr 9, 2013, 12:42pm

Dont you guys think " Five Point Someone " deserves a mention here ?? I dont know about the literary purity and all but just because of what the book did in terms of kindling a fire among the youth !! coz i am definitely one of them and i am all books now

apr 10, 2013, 8:07am

Do you mean Five Point Someone: What Not to Do at IIT by Chetan Bhagat?

BTW, links to books and authors in forum posts on LibraryThing (called "Touchstones") are made by using square brackets, single for titles, double for authors. So for example the links above are typed in as [Five Point Someone: What Not to Do at IIT] by [[Chetan Bhagat]].