Arundhati’s Roy’s book, The God of Small Things, the story about the childhood experiences of fraternal twins won the Booker prize and remained on the top of the New York Times bestseller list for a long time.In this book Arundhati shows how lives are destroyed by the ‘Love Laws’ of the Indian society. These laws dictate who should be loved and how much.The book beautifully illustrates the theme that small things in life affect people’s behavior and their lives.
The novels of Rohinton Mistry are long and at times depressing, the beauty of the books lies in their lyrical prose. His books Such a Long Journey, Family Matters, and A Fine Balance are well-written.
V.S. Naipaul, a Trinidad native writer of Indian origin courted controversy for a long time by his scathing commentaries on developing countries like India and his critical assessment of Muslim fundamentalism of non-Arab coutries. He won Nobel Prize for his writings. His books include A House for Mr. Biswas, India: A Wounded Civilization, An Area of Darkness, India: A Million Mutinies Now, and A Bend in the River.A House for Mr.Biswas deals with the story of Mohun Biswas the journalist who died of heart trouble at forty-six, jobless and penniless, leaving a wife, four children still in school, and a three-thousand-dollar mortgage on a poorly constructed house. It is a story of failure in life. In his own eyes, however, Mr. Biswas was triumphant. Not only had he won one of the two great battles of his life, but also he had bought his own house on his own land.
Amitav Ghosh is responsible for producing some of the most lyrical and insightful works on the effect of colonialism on the native people. The Sahitya Akademi winning novelist deals in his book The Hungry Tide , the eviction of refugee settlers from island of Morichjhapi in the Sunderbans by the Left Front government of West Bengal in 1979. For the old Communist Nirmal in the novel , like many others at the time this act of state violence was shown as a betrayal of everything Left –wing politics in the post-Partition era represented. His recently published book The Shadow Lines deals with the consequences of the riots , a meaningless violence which changed the lives of several people unwillingly pulled into the vortex. The writer also exhibits the narrator’s journey through the shadow lines of geopolitical boundaries through the past and the present.
Jhumpa Lahiri took the literary world by storm with her debut book The Interpreter of Maladies in which the much-debated topic of cultural identity of Indians in a far off land was treated artistically. The Namesake, her first novel, is an ambitious attempt to chart the lives of a family of immigrants through the eyes of a young boy. Upamanyu Chatterjee found success outside India with his 1988 debut novel English August. His wry sense of humour is reflected in the realistic portrayal India in this novel.
These novelists paved the ground for English writers of India in the country and of Indian origin abroad. Kiran Desai is one such writer whose second novel Inheritance of Loss tells the story of an embittered judge who wants only to retire in peace but finds that he must first revisit and come to terms with his past. The book won the Man Booker Prize in 2006. Her debut novel The Peacock set the stage for the prolific career of Anita Desai as writer and she is now regarded as one of the authors included in the Five Indian Novelists by V.V.N. Rajendra Prasad.
Gita Mehta is known chiefly for her non –fictional write ups. Her important works include Raj, A River Sutra and Karma Cola which focus on Indian history, rich culture and politics. Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni anovelist, poet, professor, and short story author, is indeed a gifted writer. Her major work includes Palace of Illusion, and Mistress Of Spice. She was given the American Book Award for Arranged Marriage.
Vikram Chandra who currently teaches creative writing at the University of California, Berkeley is also the noted author of 'Red Earth and Pouring Rain', 'Love and Longing in Bombay' and 'Sacred Games'.
An article on Indian English writers cannot ignore the names of Kuldip Nayar, Bharati Mukherjee, R.S. Laxman, Amrita Pritam, Amit Chaudhuri, Raj Kamal Jha, Kiran Nagarkar, Ram Charan, Tarla Dalal, Sanjiv Kapoor, Dipak Chopra, Nita Mehta, Shiv Khera, Shiv Khera, Robin Sharma, Sudha Murthi, Devdutt Pattanaik, and also rising novelists like Chetan Bhagat whose Welcome to 2 States, Five Point Someone, One Night at the Call Center, and 3 Mistakes of My Life have already created millions of fans for him in India and outside.
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