Sample the Literature, Food, and Art and Music of India, or take a virtual tour with gorgeous volumes of Travel Writing and Photography!

Literature

Midnight's Children

Salman Rushdie

Midnight's Children

Saleem Sinai was born at midnight, the midnight of India's independence, and found himself mysteriously 'handcuffed to history' by the coincidence. He is one of 1,001 children born at the midnight hour, each of them endowed with an extraordinary talent - and whose privilege and curse it is to be both master and victims of their times. Through Saleem's gifts - inner ear and wildly sensitive sense of smell - we are drawn into a fascinating family saga set against the vast, colourful background of the India of the 20th century.

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The God of Small Things

Arundhati Roy

The God of Small Things

The story of the tragic decline of an Indian family whose members suffer the terrible consequences of forbidden love, The God of Small Things is set in the state of Kerala, on the southernmost tip of India. Armed only with the invincible innocence of children, the twins Rahel and Esthappen fashion a childhood for themselves in the shade of the wreck that is their family -- their lonely, lovely mother, Ammu (who loves by night the man her children love by day), their blind grandmother, Mammachi (who plays Handel on her violin), their beloved uncle Chacko (Rhodes scholar, pickle baron, radical Marxist, bottom-pincher), their enemy, Baby Kochamma (ex-nun and incumbent grandaunt), and the ghost of an imperial entomologist's moth (with unusually dense dorsal tufts).

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Food

Monsoon Diary: A Memoir With Recipes

Shoba Narayan

Monsoon Diary: A Memoir With Recipes

Shoba Narayan’s Monsoon Diary weaves a fascinating food narrative that combines delectable Indian recipes with tales from her life, stories of her delightfully eccentric family, and musings about Indian culture.

Narayan recounts her childhood in South India, her college days in America, her arranged marriage, and visits from her parents and in-laws to her home in New York City. Monsoon Diary is populated with characters like Raju, the milkman who named his cows after his wives; the iron-man who daily set up shop in Narayan’s front yard, picking up red-hot coals with his bare hands; her mercurial grandparents and inventive parents. Narayan illumines Indian customs while commenting on American culture from the vantage point of the sympathetic outsider. Her characters, like Narayan herself, have a thing or two to say about cooking and about life.

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The Healing Cuisine: India's Art of Ayurvedic Cooking

Harish Johari

The Healing Cuisine: India's Art of Ayurvedic Cooking

One of the oldest systems of medicine in the world, Ayurveda views the human being as intimately connected with the environment and all other life forms. It prescribes various methods of synchronizing ourselves - physically and psychically - with the world around us, placing great emphasis on diet and the specific attributes of different foods. Following these principles, Johari explains the healing qualities that various foods and spices impart according to their subtle energies, indicating which recipes are appropriate for specific conditions of body and mind.

Author, artist, and world renowned scholar of Tantra and Ayurveda, Harish Johari has gathered his extensive knowledge into a treasury of culinary wisdom and authentic Indian recipes (all vegetarian), based on Ayurvedic principles of healing.

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Art and Music

Bollywood Dreams

Jonathan Torgovnik

Bollywood Dreams

Deriving its name from its American equivalent, Bollywood is the highly successful Indian movie industry predominantly based in Bombay and Madras. Every day more than 14 million people go to the cinema across India to watch films produced by this massive and powerful industry. In India, movies are not just a form of entertainment but practically a religion. More than any other cultural or political institution of the twentieth century, the cinema has captured the hearts and minds of India's growing population of almost one billion, even against the stark backdrop of the vast country's struggle with poverty and hunger and often tense Muslim-Hindu relations.

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Indian Art

Vidya Dehejia

Indian Art

The Indian subcontinent offers an extraordinary visual feast. Considering Indian art within a chronological framework, Vidya Dehejia analyses the great cities of the Indus civilization, the serene Buddha image, the intriguing art of cave sites, the sophisticated temple-building traditions, the luxurious art of the Mughal court, the palaces and pavilions of Rajasthan, the churches of Portuguese Goa, the various forms of art in the British Raj and the issues related to taking Indian art into the twenty-first century.

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Travel Writing and Photography

India

Adrian Mayer

India

Travel in India is a unique experience, vividly conveyed in this addition to White Star's Exploring Countries of the World series. Depicting various aspects of Indian culture, the photographs in this book take readers on a tour of the nation's magnificent temples, the crowded city streets, and the countryside. Hundreds of pictures present details of life in India, revealing the energy of the urban centers, and the peaceful landscapes of the outlying regions.

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City of Djinns: A Year in Delhi

William Dalrymple

City of Djinns A Year in Delhi

Sparkling with irrepressible wit, City of Djinns peels back the layers of Delhi's centuries-old history, revealing an extraordinary array of characters along the way-from eunuchs to descendants of great Moguls. With refreshingly open-minded curiosity, William Dalrymple explores the seven "dead" cities of Delhi as well as the eighth city-today's Delhi. Underlying his quest is the legend of the djinns, fire-formed spirits that are said to assure the city's Phoenix-like regeneration no matter how many times it is destroyed. Entertaining, fascinating, and informative, City of Djinns is an irresistible blend of research and adventure.

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