Shooting with Vish Puri in Delhi

When I needed to find a local actor in Delhi to play Vish Puri, I called a veteran film director friend of mine. Arun assured me that finding a suitable amateur thespian wouldn’t pose a problem. “Gentlemen of that build are not hard to come by in these parts,” he said. In the event, only a few candidates came forward. The most suitable was Mr. Ashok Bajaj. His ‘manager’, who I suspect was his nephew, Read the full article…

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Blood Diamond – Sunday Times

My Sunday Times review of Koh-i-Noor The History of the World’s Most Infamous Diamond by William Dalrymple and Anita Anand You’ll find the original here. The file in the foreign office containing international claims to ownership of the famous Koh-i-Noor diamond, the “Mountain of Light”, has been growing thicker of late. In 2015 alone, a consortium of Indian businessmen and Bollywood glitterati threatened legal action if the diamond wasn’t removed from its display case in the Tower Read the full article…

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India’s Demographic Crunch

Read my three-part series on the challenges facing India as its population growth continues unfettered here.

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India Through Foreign Eyes

My latest review in the Sunday Times is of Sam Miller’s “A Strange Kind of Paradise: India Through Foreign Eyes”. You’ll find the original here. Or here’s the text. A Strange Kind of Paradise India Through Foreign Eyes by Sam Miller Cape £18.99/ebook £9.99 pp421 Ringo Starr couldn’t stomach Indian food. In 1968 he arrived with his fellow ­Beatles at the Maharishi’s ashram in Rishikesh in northern India lugging a suitcase of Heinz baked beans. Read the full article…

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My Dad’s Autobiography

I’m proud to announce the publication of my father’s memoir, “An English Baby Boomer My Life and Times”. Call me bias, but I’ve found it to be a very insightful and often amusing social commentary on the post-war years. Dad, born in 1947, grew up first in South Africa and Germany before being sent off to a British boarding school at the age of seven. The Britain he describes hardly exists anymore, and his recollections Read the full article…

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Kashmir Gastronomical Adventure

Late last year I took my family up to Srinagar, Kashmir to attend a three-day wedding. Our hosts were old friends and it was lovely to spend time with them. But the trip also helped me realise a long-held ambition: to eat a full Wazwaan meal. Kashmiri food is some of my favourite. A little heavy for some perhaps – you’ve certainly got to enjoy your meat! – but absolutely delicious. You can read my Read the full article…

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Delhi, National Geographic Traveller (UK)

My piece on my relationship(s) with Delhi will appear in the January issue of National Geographic Traveller UK. You can read it in advance here. Otherwise here’s the text: When I was posted to Delhi in the mid-1990s it was a sleepy, parochial backwater.  There were no imported cars, and the Ambassador, which was modelled on the post-war Oxford Morris, still ruled the roads.  Non-Indian restaurants were few and far between.  If you wanted a change Read the full article…

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Scents, sights and sounds of South Asia

Here’s a link for a blog post I wrote for BOOKANISTA about what it was like arriving in South Asia for the first time.  The post also includes my favourite ten travel books on India.  The list includes Sorcerer’s Apprentice by Tahir Shah, Maximum City by Sukhetu Mehta and Chasing the Monsoon by Alexander Frater.  You can read the full piece here.

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The Case of the Love Commandos (Vish Puri #4) is published today in the UK

The Case of the Love Commandos (Vish Puri #4) is published today in the UK.  It’s available on Kindle and in paperback here. The US edition came out on Tuesday.  Publishers Weekly chose the book as a Best New Books for the Week, calling it ‘thought-provoking and charming.”  You can read more here. You can also learn more about Vish Puri’s India at his new blog:

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Explore Vish Puri’s India!

The Case of the Love Commandos (Vish Puri #4) is published today and I’m marking the event by launching a new section of Vish Puri’s website, which is called Vish Puri’s India. Whether or not you already know the series, it’s a great way of finding out more about the places that Puri, his team of undercover operatives and Mummy visit, and the cultural phenomena they encounter. Click here to read about India’s wily diamond Read the full article…

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