Discovering India Readathon

Unity in diversity is one sentence every history teacher of mine has reiterated an innumerable number of times. And why not, when our country is rich with a diversity of religions, customs, traditions, arts, and languages. India has officially recognised 22 dialects, but there are almost more than 800 dialects that are spoken throughout this country.

On a usual weekday, I and my fellow bibliophiles started discussing the idea of Indian Literature not getting the attention it deserves. While I am personally not dissing any foreign authors, I feel we tend to associate Indian Literature with the likes of CB (you know what I mean, trust me, you do), we really have books to look beyond the girlfriends half your age or the mistakes you didn’t make. Have you ever heard about Perumal Murugan or Lakshmi Nandan Bora? Yeah, do that CTRL+T and find them. In all honesty, even I didn’t. I feel sad that I didn’t know them because I know Jeffrey Archer (I love him), I know a lot of American, British, Japanese, Chinese authors. And, I even know Rupi Kaur (shocked right?). That doesn’t mean I am belittling them, it’s me depreciating myself for cribbing that there are no good INDIAN books or authors.

And so, the discussion (with a tablespoon of guilt) ended up with a beautiful idea of hosting a #DiscoveringIndiaReadathon to celebrate this Independence Weekend, a readathon uncovering some lesser known facts about our country, its cities, its people, and of course the freedom melee.



Organisers: The Liquid SunsetThe Bookish Tales and The Blue Balloon

Duration: 12 – 15 August’ 2017

How to participate: Choose any four books (you can always exceed, of course) as per the four challenges mentioned in the picture.

This quest of ours is supported by Harper Collins India. We are thankful to them for collaborating and encouraging our efforts to make this readathon a pleasurable experience.



To help you sail this readathon, here are some titles in each prompt that can help you choose your reading pile.

  • A book set in Pre-Independence Era

Sunlight on a Broken Column by Attia Hosain


Untouchable by Mulk Raj Anand


Women at War: Subhas Chandra Bose and the Rani of Jhansi Regiment

Women at war

The Shadow of the Great Game: The Untold Story of India’s Partition by Narendra Singh Sarila

shadow of great game



  • A book written in any Indian Language (Translated or otherwise)

Karmabhoomi by Munshi Premchand


Tagore’s Chokher Bali by Sukhendu Ray


The Liberation of Sita by Volga


One Part Woman by Perumal Murugan

one part woman


  • A book on any Indian city

All Roads Lead to Ganga by Ruskin Bond

All roads lead to ganga

Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found by Suketu Mehta

Maximum City

Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts


Laburnum For My Head by Temsula Ao


Beato’s Delhi: 1857 and Beyond by Jim Masselos and Narayani Gupta



  • A book set in Post-Independence Era

Durbar by Tavleen Singh


The Sea Lies Ahead by Intizar Hussain

Sea lies ahead

A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry

Fine balance

India After Gandhi: The History of the World’s Largest Democracy by Ramchandra Guha

India after gandhi

India’s Wars: A Military History 1947-1971 by Arjun Subramaniam



This Independence Day, let’s dig up those bookshelves, dust them off, make a good cup of tea and sit down to embark on this journey to rediscover the diversity we are proud of. The original Instagram post is here. Keep updating us using the hashtag #DiscoveringIndiaReadathon and spread the word.


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