This list is based on the Amazon bestseller books in July 2017 you might like to check it out. If you haven’t yet gone through these books consider checking out what India is reading currently. Well, Reading is the best thing you can do to get entertained and be informed. Reading is my passion since I was in school to be precise I remember reading Classics in Marathi when I was in 4th or 5th Standard. If you are bookaholic, voracious reader or just wanting to read more but haven’t yet started. Better late than never, start now and I am sure you will feel different each time you finish reading any book. The prices mentioned along with the book are from 23rd July there is a possibility that they might be changed. I have read almost all these books on my Kindle except a couple of books listed here. It certainly is a good read list.
Do let me know when you read any of these books after all this platform is all about literature, and English studies. I am planning to create another post on how to cultivate reading habit in which I will be discussing how to make most out of reading in terms of knowledge and information which can be used in our day to day life. If you find this post interesting and want to keep reading such short, precise but effective consider following this blog via email so that you can get all the posts right in your inbox every time I post something new and interesting. You might also like to leave your suggestions for posts in the comments below and you can also ask me what you want to read about. I will try to post on a variety of subjects related to Literature and English Studies.
Here is the list of best-selling books featured on Amazon this month.
Sita – Warrior of Mithila by Amish Tripathi Rs. 166
The Power of Your Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy RS. 99
The Boy Who Loved by Durjoy Datta Rs. 99
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill Rs. 75
Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki Rs. 260
Scion of Ikshvaku by Amish Tripathi Rs. 198
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho Rs. 195
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie Rs. 104
The Immortals of Meluha by Amish Tripathi Rs. 186
This Is Not Your Story by Savi Sharma Rs. 114
Share if you find this post interesting, lets spread healthy habit of reading to your friends and colleagues. Let me know what you want me to post next in the comments below.
It certainly isn’t an easy task to choose handful books out of the vast canon of Indian Writing in English. Certainly, choice of the books and authors is a subjective matter and everyone might have a variety of ideas about the most read books. This list in no way to discourage you from reading other authors and books but an honest attempt to suggest most appreciated books in Indian Writing in English. Since the purpose of this blog post is to introduce must read books to literature students, anyone who might be interested in reading best books by Indian authors should read these books.
- Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie
- The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
- A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth
- The Shadow Lines by Amitav Ghosh
- Train to Pakistan by Khushwant Singh
- The Great Indian Novel by Shashi Tharoor
- The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai
- The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga
- The Palace of Illusions by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
- English, August by Upamanyu Chatterjee
- Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri
- Untouchable by Mulk Raj Anand
- Malgudi Days by R. K. Narayan
- Kanthapura by Raja Rao
- A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry
This list can be extended to include all the popular as well as widely read books from Indian Writing in English. Your suggestions are welcome in the comments below. Links to purchase these books are added to the titles of the books. Happy Reading!
When learning English as a second language, grammar becomes the most essential part because grammar makes communication possible without any misunderstandings and misinterpretation. Most of the ESL (English as a Second Language) learners find it difficult to understand and use perfect grammar. Improper grammar can cause a great deal of damage to your intended message and it will not be delivered to the receiver. Most of my students, as well as friends from the various fields, keep me asking about the best grammar books to master English Grammar so here is the list to answer all those queries.
High School English Grammar and Composition By Wren and Martin
You also need to buy a key to this book in which you may find all the answers to the exercises given in the book.
Essential English Grammar with Answers By Raymond Murphy
Practical English Grammar By A.J. Thomson
There are thousands of books on English Grammar but any of these books will serve the purpose. I would highly recommend Wren and Martin for all the learners of English Language along with the Key. Clicking on the titles will take you to the place from where you can buy the books.
Being Editor of a refereed Journal I often receive messages and queries from the research scholars and academicians on what books they must use for Research Methodology in English Literature. This is an honest attempt to address all those queries and messages. First of all let me tell you why methodology, Well, everyone wants to write a good research paper, dissertation, thesis or a project. Most of the time while writing research paper we stuck at the beginning on how to expand your ‘research idea’ in a good research paper or thesis. If you are at the beginning of your research career it is obvious. In most of the cases, we fail to understand the importance of Research Methodology which results in the ‘researchers block’ where we get stuck on what to do next. If you are well aware of the techniques of writing a research paper or a research proposal you obviously won’t feel stuck while writing your research paper or thesis. Both ‘Research idea’ that is the content of your research and the technique of writing research paper or thesis (research methodology) are equally important.
If you don’t have primary knowledge on Research Methodology and Style Guide your research is often rejected by the standard Journals. The best way is to have few basic books on Research Methodology and Citation Style Guide books at your service whenever you are writing research paper or thesis. If you are research scholar doctoral degree is not the end of your research its the beginning. Nowadays even UGC has made it compulsory for teachers to do research and publish in standard Journals for promotion and even for the award of the doctoral degree. You better take it seriously and prepare for it now.
Here is the list of few useful and ‘must have’ books on Research Methodology and it won’t cost you more than few hundred rupees, this investment for your academic career is must so don’t wait for an earthquake to bring out your potatoes. Act immediately and buy a couple of books to perfect your research. This is for all the Research scholars and faculty of the college and university.
Here is the list of books you must have at least 2 out of it though having more books for reference won’t hurt. Purchase at least one on Research Methodology and couple of books on Citation style guide (MLA & API)
Research Methods for English Studies by Gabriele Griffin
Research Methods in English by M. P. Sinha
APA Made Easy: Revised and Updated for the APA 6th Edition by Scott Matkovich
I personally have been using almost every edition as soon as it is released of these citation formatting books since my post graduation. I deliberately kept this list short because you should not waste your time on deciding on which book you should purchase. I Highly recommend all four books if you want to write more research papers and get them published in the standard refereed journals.
You might be interested in checking out my another blog post Must have books for English NET/SET (SLET)
If you think this is is useful, share it with your scholars, students, colleagues, and friends. Don’t forget to make suggestions or give feedback in the comments below and obviously do follow this blog to receive all the posts in your inbox as soon as they are published.
The reason behind this blog post is a lot of students and aspirants keep asking about the books they should read for the preparation of NET/SET exam in English Literature. This is an attempt to list ‘must have books’ for preparation, this is not a comprehensive list because for qualifying an exam one must have a versatile knowledge of their respective subject and which is nowadays available everywhere on the web as well as in the books which you can find in your college or University library.
One must have an in-depth knowledge of the subject to solve objective questions and students must not seek a shortcut or fall for the coaching and crash courses which are being offered by some of the institutes or individuals unless the teacher is really experienced. No matter who the coach is it is you who needs to perform in the exam and before that you need to have the knowledge and you should be able to convert information, which is available in the digital world free of cost into knowledge. Most important thing in the preparation for any competitive exam is you must read a lot and work hard, Don’t fall for the shortcuts, they won’t help you in qualifying any competitive exam.
Let us not discuss Do and Don’t at this point, we may do that at some other time in some other post.
First of all, you must study previous questions papers so that you won’t waste your time by focusing on the unimportant things. You can download previous question papers from UGC website (Click here) and also University of Pune website for SET (Click here)
Here is the list of the books with the link where you can purchase books. I deliberately added links because I know since you are visiting this blog and reading this post means you really want to know how to study and which are the Must Have Books. One should not just decide to work hard to achieve success but act immediately. Take that first step right now, If you don’t have the books listed here buy now because we usually keep postponing things to ‘some other time’. Click on the titles to know its cost and buy immediately.
Here is the list of ‘MUST HAVE’ Books and resources for NET/SET (English Literature)
- A Glossary of Literary Terms by M. H. Abrams, Geoffrey Galt Harpham (11th Edition)
The Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory (Fifth Edition) by J. A. Cuddon
Beginning Theory (third edition) by Peter Barry
- Literary Theory and Criticism by Patricia Waugh
- Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction by Jonathan Culler
- Modern Literary Criticism and Theory: A History by M.A.R. Habib
- A History of Literary Criticism and Theory: From Plato to the Present by M.A.R. Habib
The Short Oxford History of English Literature by Andrew Sanders
A Short History of English Literature by Lord Ifor Evans and Bernard Bergonzi
History of English Literature by Edward Albert
A Critical History Of English Literature by David Daiches
- The Norton Anthology of English Literature Vol. I and II. by M. H. Abrams
Illustrated History of Indian Literature in English by A. K. Mehrotra
- Concise History of Indian Literature in English by A. K. Mehrotra
- Indian Writing in English by K.R.Srinivasa Iyengar
- The Oxford Companion to English Literature by Dinah Birch
The Oxford Companion to African-American Literature by William L. Andrews, Frances Smith Foster, Trudier Harris; Foreword by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
The Oxford Companion to Canadian Literature by Eugene Benson, William Toye
A History of the English Language by Albert C. Baugh
A History of English Language Teaching by Anthony P. R. Howatt
I will be updating this list incorporating suggestions. If you think of any important book is missing from the list do let me know in the comment below, Will add it to the list. Besides if you want questions related to the preparation or on how to study use a comment box below to ask me. Will reply to your comments as soon as I can or create another post to address your query if required. Don’t forget to follow this blog using your email ID so that you can get all such posts right in your inbox every time I publish them.
THE GLASS MENAGERIE
The Glass Menagerie is a memory play, and its action is drawn from the memories of the narrator, Tom Wingfield. Tom is a character in the play, which is set in St. Louis in 1937. He is an aspiring poet who toils in a shoe warehouse to support his mother, Amanda, and sister, Laura. Mr. Wingfield, Tom and Laura’s father, ran off years ago and, except for one postcard, has not been heard from since.
Amanda, originally from a genteel Southern family, regales her children frequently with tales of her idyllic youth and the scores of suitors who once pursued her. She is disappointed that Laura, who wears a brace on her leg and is painfully shy, does not attract any gentlemen callers. She enrolls Laura in a business college, hoping that she will make her own and the family’s fortune through a business career. Weeks later, however, Amanda discovers that Laura’s crippling shyness has led her to drop out of the class secretly and spend her days wandering the city alone. Amanda then decides that Laura’s last hope must lie in marriage and begins selling magazine subscriptions to earn the extra money she believes will help to attract suitors for Laura. Meanwhile, Tom, who loathes his warehouse job, finds escape in liquor, movies, and literature, much to his mother’s chagrin. During one of the frequent arguments between mother and son, Tom accidentally breaks several of the glass animal figurines that are Laura’s most prized possessions. Continue reading →
LORD OF THE FLIES
In the midst of a raging war, a plane evacuating a group of schoolboys from Britain is shot down over a deserted tropical island. Two of the boys, Ralph and Piggy, discover a conch shell on the beach, and Piggy realizes it could be used as a horn to summon the other boys. Once assembled, the boys set about electing a leader and devising a way to be rescued. They choose Ralph as their leader, and Ralph appoints another boy, Jack, to be in charge of the boys who will hunt food for the entire group.
Ralph, Jack, and another boy, Simon, set off on an expedition to explore the island. When they return, Ralph declares that they must light a signal fire to attract the attention of passing ships. The boys succeed in igniting some dead wood by focusing sunlight through the lenses of Piggy’s eyeglasses. However, the boys pay more attention to playing than to monitoring the fire, and the flames quickly engulf the forest. A large swath of dead wood burns out of control, and one of the youngest boys in the group disappears, presumably having burned to death.
At first, the boys enjoy their life without grown-ups and spend much of their time splashing in the water and playing games. Ralph, however, complains that they should be maintaining the signal fire and building huts for shelter. The hunters fail in their attempt to catch a wild pig, but their leader, Jack, becomes increasingly preoccupied with the act of hunting.
AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE
The town in which the play is set has built a huge bathing complex that is crucial to the town’s economy. Dr. Stockmann has just discovered that the baths’ drainage system is seriously contaminated. He alerts several members of the community, including Hovstad and Aslaksen, and receives generous support and thanks for making his discovery in time to save the town. The next morning, however, his brother, who is also the town’s mayor, tells him that he must retract his statements, for the necessary repairs would be too expensive; additionally, the mayor is not convinced by Dr. Stockmann’s findings. The brothers have a fierce argument, but Dr. Stockmann hopes that at least Hovstad’s newspaper will support him. However, the mayor convinces Hovstad and Aslaksen to oppose Dr. Stockmann.
The doctor holds a town meeting to give a lecture on the baths, but Aslaksen and the mayor try to keep him from speaking. Dr. Stockmann then begins a long tirade in which he condemns the foundations of the town and the tyranny of the majority. The audience finds his speech incredibly offensive, and the next morning the doctor’s home is vandalized. He and his daughter are fired. The mayor insinuates that the doctor’s actions were merely a scheme to inherit more of Morten Kiil’s money, and Kiil himself soon arrives to suggest just such a plan to Dr. Stockmann. However, the doctor refuses all such suggestions and decides to defy authority and remain in town. His family is supportive, and he says that the strongest man is the man who stands alone. Continue reading →
Shantinath Desai (1929-1998) was one of the most gifted writers to emerge from the Navya movement in Kannada. Though he began his literary career as a poet, he son realised that the medium most suited to his genius was fiction. He published in all eight collections of short stories- Manjugadde (1959), Kshitija (1966), Dande (1971), Ayda Kategalu (1977), Rakshasa (1977), Parivartane (1984), Kurmavatara (1988), and Samagra Kategalu (2001); and seven novels- Mukti (1961), Vikshepa (1971), Srishti (1979), Sambandha (1982), Antarala (1983), Bija (1993), and Om Namo which won the Sahitya Akademi Award, posthumously in 1999.
Though Desai is remembered chiefly for his first novel Mukti which started the vogue of the Modernist novel in Kannada, his finest work in fiction is undoubtedly his last novel Om Namo.
All of Desai’s novels have a strong ideological base but they are powerful narratives as well. Om Namo tells two interrelated stories. The first of these which may be called a ‘love story’ is about two young British citizens, Adam Desai and Ann Eagleton, who come to India on a research project in social anthropology. The relationship between the two which begins in friendship based in friendship based on common interest matures into a strong commitment to each other during their stay in India. Ann’s serious involvement in Jaina religion and Adam’s reluctance to enter into a long term commitment create some obstacles but these are finally overcome. The second elates to an old family belonging to a place called Krishnapur located in the northern parts of Karnataka. This story which begins in the last decades of the twentieth century progresses into the seventies and the eighties. In the India context this story may be characterised as a story of modrnisation. The family undergoes drastic changes because of its exposure to English education and involvement in business and politics and gradually loses its feudal character. The phenomenon gives rise to new problems which demand new solutions.
Desai’s interest in the novel, however, is not limited to the telling of these stories. The novel acquires significance through its ideological content, the exploration of man-woman relationships and the inquiry into the nature of the process of modernisation in a specific Indian context. Adam and Ann are products of Western culture and civilisation. Adam has Indian connections through his father but his upbringing has been entirely Western and there are no cultural differences between him and ann. Both are committed to the ideal of individual freedom and share liberal attitudes towards matters like sex. The Desai family, in contrast, is at least outwardly committed to the Indian values of family and community. But it is also undergoing a process of modernity. The entry of Adam and Ann into the family adds momentum to the process. Adam kin his turn experiences change through his involvement with the Desai family which receives him warmly. Ann’s researches in Jainism result in her serious involvement with Jaina religion and Jaina society, but her relationship with the Desai family is superficial.
Through Ann, the foreigner, the novelist creates a new perspective for looking at India, in particular Jaina religion and society, from the outside, there is also the insider’s perspective provided by Dr. Nirmalkumar who teaches philosophy in college and his daughter Roja, a committed Marxist. Bharatkumar, a younger member of the Desai family who has lost his faith in Jainism but lacks the courage to rebel against it provides an ironic perspective as well. Details like descriptions of places of pilgrimage, observations on Jaina rituals and references to Munis and Bastis combine to create an authentic Jaina environment. Philosophical discussions about Jainism from the Indian as well as the Western points of view add and intellectual dimension to the narrative.
We may now examine then two interrelated narratives in some detail. First the Adam-Ann story. Though both of them study in the same University and share many interests, their family backgrounds are different. Adam’s father, Dr. Neminath, is an academic working in a British University. He is married to an English woman and has broken off his relations with his Indian family which includes a former wife. Adam is half Jaina and half Christian but he identifies himself as a British citizen and a Christian. Ann’s family background is more problematic. She hates her stepmother and India is a kind of escape for her. India affects Adam and Ann in two ways. The warmth and affection with which Adam is received by his ancestral family awaken in him a new sense of belonging and responsibility. It is he who settles difficult problems in the family after Appasaheb’s death. His temporary attraction to Roja springs probably from this new feeling. Ann too drifts away from Adam because of her involvement with Jainism. But Adam soon disxovers that Roja is looking elsewhere for a companion and Ann is disenchanted with Jainis,. Shie has deep respect for Jaina values but she finds that she does not fit into the Jaina community. India which initially separates Adam and Ann brings them together in the end and the narrative closes with their commitment to each other.
The novel pays equal attention to the other narrative which traces the gradual impact of modernity in the Desai family. The family which was once a large joint family when Adappa was the head has already broken up into three units. Shrenik, the youngest of Adappa’s sons, has moved out of Krishnapur with his share of the property. Devendrappa, the eldest, is educated but continues to be strictly orthodox in his beliefs and practices. But modernity has crept into his familty through his son Neminath who has migrated to England and settled there. Appasaheb, Adappa’s second son, is a keader of the local Jaina community who has gained prominence by earning wealth and power through his business activities and participation in politics. He takes pride in his feudal origins and has retained many of the old feudal ways. Appasaheb’s son, Bharatkumar, represents the new generation of Jaina youth. He has lost his faith in the Jaina religion but maintains a hypocritical relationship with it with an eye on social propriety and personal interest.
The phenomenon of modernisation is not limited to the Desai family in the novel. It can be observed in the lives of Dr. Nirmalkumar and his daughter Roja and the institutional canges in the Jaina maths. Nirmalkumar is the prototype of the colonial intellectual. He is a fairly good scholar in the traditional mould but his eagerness for recognition abroad makes him slightly ridiculous. Roja, his daughter is totally lost to Marxism.
Modernisation, in the context of this novel, is not a totally positive development. It has, for example, commericialised and vulgarised many of the Jaina customs and practices. Ann’s description of the great Mahamastakabhisheka as a big Indian fair is not completely mistaken. But the novel discovers real value in Devendrappa’s orthodoxy and catholicity. Modernity has hardly touched the older women in the family –Lakshumbayi and Padmavati.
Shantinath Desai was an experimental novelist and paid great attention to matters of technique. He has said that he could not make much progress with his first novel mukti till he discovered Durrell’s Justine. An innovative feature of the technique he adopts in Om Namo is the dialogue the ‘novelist’ Conducts with his readers and critics at crucial stages in the narrative. Desai had used this technique in Srishti, and earlier novel but here it is more effective. Apart from guiding the reader through the novel, the ‘novelist’ as an insider provides valuable insights into his craft. The self-reflectiveness in Om Namo suggests that it is a conscious postmodern experiememnt.