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“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one,” (George R.R. Martin). Today is the World Book Day; the day of celebrating the joy of reading. Books distribute the world knowledge, teach ideals, inspire creativity, spark innovation, illumine the mind, and lead to revolution. Books give rise to our desire for travel as well. If you are seeking motivation and blessing for traveling, some of the travel books on India can play the Muse for you. Indian Eagle handpicked the five best titles from a huge selection of travel books whose protagonist is India. The titles are….
Travelers’ Tales India
A compilation of 50 travelogues, this travel book on India inspires you to step into the shoes of a true wandering traveler. Edited by James O’Reilly, it enriches you with a mélange of real-life travel experiences and makes you visualize the remote locales through lively descriptions penned by the travel writers. It portrays India as a multi-layered character with several dimensions just like a typical Indian bazar in suburbs. It pictures the holy bath of 15 million pilgrims during the Kumbh Mela, the confluence of the India and Pacific Oceans, the life of one-horned rhinoceros in the jungles of Assam, and likes. The book “Travelers’ Tales India” gives new perspectives of India beyond monsoon and marigold, snow and sand, dung and dust.
Around India in 80 Trains
As the title suggests, the book is a tale of adventure travel in trains crisscrossing India by Monisha Rajesh, a British journalist at The Week UK. While reading an article on India’s flourishing domestic aviation, she reminisces her childhood days in India and feels nostalgic. Further inspired by Jules Verne’s “Around the World in 80 Days”, Monisha embarks upon a journey of adventure and discovery across 40,000 km by trains in India. While traveling in local trains, express trains, superfast trains, toy trains and luxury trains, she comes across a wide range of characters; some are funny while some are weird. She experiences many odd and offbeat things from Kashmir to Kanyakumari. Infused with overtones of wit and humor, “Around India in 80 Trains” is a patchwork of her kaleidoscopic train journeys.
City of Djinns: A Year in Delhi
An interface between a travelogue and a novel, the book by William Dalrymple is a historical as well as mythological journey from the 1984 riots to the times of Mahabharata. As the name suggests, the book is all about Delhi to its deepest core. The lively depiction of the author and his wife’s interactions with the people of Delhi – taxi drivers, street sweepers, gardeners, traffic police, the Sikh landlady, custom officials, hawkers, and others from various walks of life breathes life into the story of the book. The author has dug up some interesting facts from Delhi’s mystic being and mysterious past that many are unaware of. The book “City of Djinns: A Year in Delhi” is like the Time Machine which takes you on a ride from the present to the past through centuries of Delhi’s evolution.
Chai, Chai: Travels in Places Where You Stop But Never Get Off
The first person narrative of travels from Kanpur to Chennai by Biswanath Ghosh, an Indian journalist and writer, this travel book is a beautiful blend of his experiences, feelings, observations, encounters and insights during the journey. The way he has expressed and penned his stories turns railway stations and platforms into eventful destinations. The book is a collage of the moments including the joy of drinking tea on a platform that he lived during the journey. Trains, stations and platforms are the buildings blocks of the book “Chai, Chai: Travels in Places Where You Stop But Never Get Off”, steeped in with and humor. This travelogue puts you on a ride to those areas of India which commercial tourism has outshined.
All Roads Lead to Ganga
Since the dawn of history, the Ganga River has been the heart and soul of India. Flowing through the misty valleys, lofty mountains, icy glaciers, and dense forests in the Himalayan region, the Ganga is the soul of India. The river streams through the heartland sprawling across miles till it merges with the Bay of Bengal. The book, a marvelous piece of travel memoir by Ruskin Bond, is an eloquent narrative of the places where he took stopover and the people who he encountered during a period of 40 years. He has captured the beauty, opulence, dynamism and diversity of the Himalayan landscape and its wildlife, through the web of words in the book “All Roads Lead to Ganga”.
In keeping with the essence of the beginning quote, we at Indian Eagle would like to say, “A traveler lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never travels lives only one.” We wish you, Happy Reading! Happy Traveling!