The Last Mughal

(pic: A very sad picture of the great Bahdur Shah Zafar, the last Mughal emperor in exile)

Lovely lovely book. The book is about the first war of Indian Independence (1857). It very vividly explains the political situation, people's lives, their struggles, and more importantly, the root cause of the great mutiny, the role of Bahdur Shah Zafar, and the end of the great Mughal empire. The author is William Dalrymple, a Scott. He clearly has a soft corner for India, and it suited me quite fine as I am an Indian myself.

Highlights: brilliant reconstruction of day-to-day life (you got to read the book to understand how brilliant), very good research and the author's through understanding of India and its culture. The book rubbishes most of the things that we learnt in our textbooks about the great revolt. The author treats the royalty and the great poets who we have grown up hearing about as normal human beings, and that kept me turn pages without getting bored. If you understand India well, and if you enjoy reading history, this book is a must read.