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Cover of Urban Shots Edited by Paritosh Uttam

Cover of Dreams in Prussian Blue by Paritosh Uttam

R. K. Narayan

Rasipuram Krishnaswami Ayyar Naranayanaswami (1906-2001) was born in Madras and had his initial education there, and later in Mysore.Photograph of R. K. Narayan

He is considered one of the trio (along with Mulk Raj Anand and Raja Rao) that forms the precursor to Indian Writing in English as we know it today.

His books in general are lightly humorous, but the unexpected touch of pathos is undeniable. The most popular of his creations is the fictitious town of Malgudi with its unforgettable denizens. His friendship with Graham Greene was instrumental in his becoming known to the world.

He was awarded the Padma Bhushan and the Sahitya Akademi Award.


  • Swami and Friends
  • The Bachelor of Arts
  • The Dark Room
  • The English Teacher
  • An Astrologer’s Day and Other Short Stories
  • Mr. Sampath
  • The Financial Expert
  • Waiting for the Mahatma
  • Lawley Road
  • The Guide
  • Next Sunday
  • The Man-Eater of Malgudi
  • My Dateless Diary
  • Gods, Demons and Others
  • The Vendor of Sweets
  • A Horse and Two Goats
  • The Ramayana
  • My Days
  • Reluctant Guru
  • The Painter of Signs
  • The Mahabharata
  • The Emerald Route
  • Malgudi Days
  • A Tiger for Malgudi
  • Under the Banyan Tree
  • Talkative Man
  • A Writer’s Nightmare
  • The World of Nagaraj
  • Salt and Sawdust
  • Grandmother’s Tales

The Guide

The Guide is the tale of Railway Raju, a disarmingly corrupt tourist guide, who lives by his wits and falls in love with a beautiful dancer. More by chance than skill, he seduces her away from her husband, a lonely writer obsessed with local rock-carvings, and transforms her into a celebrity courted by wealthy and influential dignitaries wherever she performs. Raju makes and loses a fortune, finds himself in jail, and—through a series of hilarious, ironic circumstances—becomes one of India’s great holy men.