Khushwant Singh can be described as one of India’s most noted and influential, Journalist, writer and lawyer. The man was an inspiration for many due to his biting humour, witty sarcasm and his ability to stand up for what he felt was wrong. Khushwant Singh has seen and been through some of the toughest times in India and his literary work is a living proof of all that.
Singh can simply be described as an icon and inspiration for many budding writers, all around the world. He was a talented and hardworking man who out outperformed on every turn in his life. The man was a lawyer, journalist and writer, but all of this didn’t stop him from being a man with an immense love for humour in life.
Singh was also one of the most widely read columnists in the country. His column “With Malice Towards One and All”, can be considered one of the highlights of his career that brought him closer to his readers and to every normal person.
We have decided to congregate some of his best novels and literary work. If you haven’t read these ones, we would definitely recommend you to do so.
*Disclaimer: we have randomly curated the list and numbers don’t mean anything, we haven’t rated the novels.
1. Delhi: A Novel (1990)
Delhi: A Novel, has been defined as “History in the garb of Erotica”, which revolves around the tale of Delhi’s history. The novel moves two different time phases, the present and the past, the author talks about the history of Delhi and takes us along his sex and love life with Bhagmati, a sex worker.
2. India: An Introduction (1998)
Another novel by Khushwant Singh that takes you on a journey, from the ancient times to the present. However, this time the author tells the story of the land and its people from the earliest time, the time of civilisation. The story is written in the most detailed and authentic way possible about the turmoil that India has been through.
3. The Sunset Club (2010)
The Sunset Club is a story about three friends who have known and been in each other’s company from past 40 years. Pandit Preetam Sharma, Sardar Boota Singh and Nawab Barkatullah Baig are now in their 80’s and every evening, at the sunset hour, the three of them sit together at the Lodhi Garden on a bench and exchange their news and views on what’s happening around them. Their daily exchange includes everything, love, scandal, religion, lust and politics. The book would help one to know what do old people think and talk about with their friends, how they have taken the advances of the world and everything else around them.
4. Truth, Love and a Little Malice: An Autobiography (2002)
This is an autobiography which means one would be able to know the Khushwant Singh by his words and experiences. The book is captivating for anyone who wants to have a deep look inside the author’s early life and mind while growing up in the pre and post independent India. Apart from a rich background of the author, one would be accompanied by Singh’s popular humour, throughout the book.
5. I Shall Not Hear The Nightingale (1959)
This was the second novel of Khushwant Singh’s career and also one of the widely acclaimed, which is set in Amritsar, Punjab when India was at its peak of freedom from the British Raj. The book revolves around the lives of Sardar Buta Singh and his family that consists of his son, wife and sister. The narration of the book is simple, which has been Singh’s forte.
6. Train To Pakistan (1956)
Train To Pakistan is described as one of India’s historical novels that tells the horror and pain of the India and Pakistan partition, and how it deeply affected the lives of millions of people. The book not only carries the political affairs but also the lives that went through all of it in the most authentic way possible.
7. Why I Supported The Emergency (2009)
The book is a work of nonfiction that consists essays on one of the darkest times in India’s history, when the freedom of the press was curtailed by the government, and why the author supported the move. One can find compiled profiles on some of the most important people and historical figures in the country that includes, the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, G.D. Birla, Jinnah and many poets, writers and even Phoolan Devi and Bandit Queen.
8. Women And Men In My Life (1995)
This novel covers the author’s life and the people in his life. The people that he has met and fallen out with and the one he befriended during the course of his career.
9. A History Of The Sikhs (1963)
As the name said, the book spans over the Sikh history that starts with how the religion came into existence and till the end of Sikh empire. The book is written in Khushwant Singh’s trademark style and everything in the book is supported with detailed references. One can almost consider the book to be untainted, detailed and quick read on Sikh history.
10. The Good, The Bad And The Ridiculous (2013)
The book consists of essays on some of the most prolific and iconic figures in Indian history. Anyone who is interested in twentieth-century India’s history, politics and socio-economic scenario, can reach out for the book. It almost gives an insight about the people who we have read about in history books or newspapers and have seen on television.