Delhi, the heart of our India has a long, explorative, glorious yet distressing journey of its own. Delhi stood shakenly strong through the times of the Mughal era, anti-Sikh riots, changing dynasties, British colonial rule to changing governments. The city has innumerable tales to tell of its glory and share the grievances of the times of trials.
Read these books based on Delhi to teletransport yourself to the various eras of the city and feel closer to it, and we bet Delhi will not disappoint you.
Delhi: A Novel by Khushwant Singh
Delhi’ by Khushwant Singh will take you to the times of the Mughal era. Flip through the pages to experience the history of the city, living the tales various historical attractions has to tell. The fictional story of Mr.Singh, who is in love with a eunuch plays in the foreground with Delhi setting a beautiful backdrop to tell you the stories of Sultans, poets, eunuchs, saints, common people about love, lust, betrayal, and power.
Twilight in Delhi by Ahmed Ali
Twilight by Delhi will transport you to the lanes of Old Delhi and Ahmed Ali will make you see, smell, feel, hear, and breathe the liveliness and melancholy of Delhi like never before. He takes you through an era during which the British take power from the last Mughal ruler.
City Of Djinns: A Year In Delhi by William Dalrymple
If you are someone who is obsessed with the history of the cities, the City of Djinns by William Dalrymple is a must-read. This book is well researched and will take you to the world of Sufis, poets, eunuchs, Persian Scholars, Mughals, British, and refugees from Pakistan. Pick this book to travel through the journey when Delhi was Shahjahanabad in 1639, to becoming the capital of British Raj in 1911 to becoming a refugee center after the partition.
Delhi By Heart: Impressions Of A Pakistani Traveller by Raza Rumi
This book explores Dil Waalon ki Dilli through the eyes of a Pakistani traveler. Raza Rumi talks about the shared history, heritage, culture, food, and even pain between both the countries. Walk through the lanes of Old Delhi to absorb its tales of antiquity and Sufism, reminiscing Ghalib and Mir on your way.
Capital: The Eruption Of Delhi by Rana Das Gupta
After liberalization in 1991, the financial growth of India, especially, Delhi started growing, and Rana Das Gupta pens down the trend of global elite and capitalism in Delhi. Delhi is more than what catches the eye, evolved with a complex history, journey through the reins, crisis, and the diverse stories of the city dwellers, and Capital captures the essence realistically.
Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie
This book revolves around Saleem Sinai, who was born at the midnight of India’s independence. This book traverses various cities, including Delhi, and the period of the Emergency rule imposed by Indira Gandhi and its influence on the city. This fictional story is set in the 20th century and explores various angles of the cultural background of that era. Midnight’s children is a literary acclaimed book and have been accoladed with many awards.
Trees Of Delhi: A Field Guide by Pradip Krishnen
This book will make up look up and notice and explore trees. Once you finish this book, the trees, plants, leaves, patterns, the streets, and your surroundings will not be the same. If you are a Plant enthusiast, make sure to pick it up for a light yet explorative read. This is one of the unique yet interesting books based on Delhi you should definitely include in your list of To Read.
The Walls of Delhi, Uday Prakash
Love reading short stories? Check out The walls of Delhi, a collection of three short stories by Uday Prakash. The stories are simple yet deep and are set in Delhi and hover around the various harsh realities still persistent in the country.
Have you read any other books based on Delhi? Tell us in the comments.