India Rising: Tales From a Changing Nation, by Oliver Balch

Paperback review

Thu, Oct 17, 2013, 12:54

   
 

Book Title:
India Rising: Tales From a Changing Nation

ISBN-13:
9780571259267

Author:
Oliver Balch

Publisher:
Faber and Faber

Guideline Price:
Sterling9.99

In India Rising , the British journalist Oliver Balch beautifully captures the spirit and rhythm of a nation. Balch foregoes analysis and history-book fact-feeding for a collection of lively anecdotes gathered from across the subcontinent. We meet designers at Delhi Fashion Week who capture old and new India in their catwalk creations; a taxi driver who splits his days between the glittering skyscraper world of his clients and his home in Mumbai’s labyrinthine slums; a young man who sacrifices everything for the dream of becoming a Bollywood film star; and recent computer-science graduates who describe life on the megacampus of an IT giant and their ambitions for the future. Through the passions, perceptions and hopes of the country’s people, Balch introduces us to modern India, a landscape where extremes collide, clash and sometimes even cooperate, and the forces of enterprise, aspiration and change are everywhere in evidence. The stories are illuminating, and Balch’s writing is just plain excellent.