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R. K. Narayan

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R. K. Narayan - 1906 - 2001

Rasipuram Krishnaswamy Narayan (October 10, 1906 - May 13, 2001) was an Indian novelist. His novels are characterised by Chekhovian simplicity and gentle humour. Characters in his novels tend to be very down-to-earth. His novels are generally set in the imaginary town of Malgudi, which might be any town in South India.

His writing career began with Swami and Friends. At first, he could not get the novel published. Eventually, the draft was shown to Graham Greene by a mutual friend, Purna. Greene liked it so much that he arranged for its publication. Greene was to remain a close friend and admirer of his. After that, he published a continuous stream of novels, all set in Malgudi and each dealing with different characters in that fictional place. Autobiographical content forms a significant part of some of his novels. For example, the events surrounding the death of his young wife and how he coped with the loss form the basis of The English Teacher.

Many of Narayan's works are rooted in everyday life, though he is not shy of invoking Hindu tales or traditional Indian folklore to emphasize a point. His easy-going outlook on life has sometimes been criticized, though in general he is viewed as an accomplished, sensitive and reasonably prolific writer.

List of his major works (in chronological order) :

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