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SMITHSONIAN JOURNEYS

Jewels of India & the Maldives

READING AND TRAVEL GUIDE

  • E-MAIL
  • PRINT

Enrich your travels with reading! Here's a hand-picked list prepared for your journey in conjunction with the book experts at Longitude.

Essential Reading

Item EXIDA333. Buy these 4 items as a set for $95 including shipping, 15% off the retail price.
With free shipping on anything else you order.

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India, In Word and Image

India, In Word and Image

by Eric Meola

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2013
  • HARD COVER
  • 272 PAGES

Eric Meola deftly pairs colorful photographs of people, traditions, art and architecture with choice quotations by Salman Rushdie, R. K. Narayan, Jhumpa Lahiri and others in this dazzling visual celebration of the culture and pageantry of India. (IDA540, $60.00)

Taj Mahal

Taj Mahal

by Giles Tillotson | Mary Beard

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 190 PAGES

An enlightening pocket guide to the myth, meaning and legends of the celebrated tomb, "the queen of architecture." (IDA528, $14.95)

City of Djinns: A Year in Delhi

City of Djinns: A Year in Delhi

by William Dalrymple

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 350 PAGES
  • FAVORITE

Dalrymple infectiously interweaves his own experiences over a year in Delhi with its art, architecture, history and literature. (IDA06, $16.00)

Indian Subcontinent Map

Indian Subcontinent Map

by Nelles

  • MAP

A map of all of India as well as Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and parts of Tibet, China and Burma, at a scale of 1:4,500,000. (IDA271, $13.95)

 
Blue Guide India

Blue Guide India


by Sam Miller

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 800 PAGES

Known for its outstanding coverage of ancient history and archaeology, this Blue Guide to India offers comprehensive coverage of the country's art, culture and archaeology. (IDA631, $29.95)

Eyewitness Guide Delhi, Agra and Jaipur

Eyewitness Guide Delhi, Agra and Jaipur


by Anuradha Chaturvedi

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 320 PAGES

With chapters on Taj Mahal, Amber Fort Palace, Keoladeo Ghana National Park, Red Fort and dozens of other highlights for the traveler, this compact, gorgeously illustrated guide to Delhi and its environs features 900 color photographs, maps and site plans. (IDA151, $25.00)

Arrow of the Blue-Skinned God

Arrow of the Blue-Skinned God


by Jonah Blank

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2000
  • PAPER
  • 370 PAGES

Blank's entertaining portrait of contemporary India and Sri Lanka mixes reporting, anecdote and myth as he travels, sometimes in the footsteps of India's great hero Rama. (IDA250, $18.00)

In Spite of the Gods

In Spite of the Gods


by Edward Luce

  • HISTORY
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 346 PAGES

Luce tackles the challenges and reality of the world's largest democracy with insight and balance in this portrait of a nation in transition. (IDA349, $16.95)

India

India


by Stanley Wolpert

  • HISTORY
  • 2009
  • PAPER
  • 281 PAGES

Wolpert's reflections on India -- its religion and philosophy, its art, culture and politics -- make for a wonderfully literate, succinct primer. (IDA04, $29.95)

India, A Sacred Geography

India, A Sacred Geography


by Diana L. Eck

  • RELIGION
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 576 PAGES

Professor of comparative religion and Indian studies at Harvard, Diana Eck turns her interest in temples and places of pilgrimage into a celebration of the diversity of popular religious traditions in India in this richly rewarding travelogue. (IDA634, $16.00)

Mughal India, Splendours of the Peacock Throne

Mughal India, Splendours of the Peacock Throne


by Valerie Berinstain | Paul Bahn

  • HISTORY
  • 1998
  • PAPER
  • 159 PAGES

This illustrated pocket guide presents the history, culture and splendor of the Mughal court and its celebrated architecture in hundreds of archival photographs and drawings. (IDA50, $15.95)

Running in the Family

Running in the Family


by Michael Ondaatje

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 1993
  • PAPER
  • 207 PAGES

Award-winning author Ondaatje returns to his native Sri Lanka in this hypnotic travelogue. His lovingly traced family memoirs are interspersed with poetry and ruminations on the island's post-colonial history. (SRL04, $15.00)

India, A Traveler's Literary Companion

India, A Traveler's Literary Companion


by Chandrahas Choudhury

  • ANTHOLOGY
  • 2010
  • PAPER
  • 256 PAGES

Each of these 14 stories evokes place and landscape, providing an excellent introduction both to contemporary writers and to India's diverse cultures and history. (IDA598, $14.95)

River of Smoke

River of Smoke


by Amitav Ghosh

  • LITERATURE
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 528 PAGES

A clipper ship carrying opium from India to Canton, a nursery ship on the trail of rare Chinese plants, and the good ship Ibis, full of indentured servants, converge in Canton's Fanqui-Town, or Foreign Enclave in this second book in Ghosh's epic trilogy. (IDA638, $16.00)

The Artist of Disappearance

The Artist of Disappearance


by Anita Desai

  • LITERATURE
  • 2011
  • HARD COVER
  • 176 PAGES

In just three sharply drawn, interconnected stories Desai evokes a whole world, showing the contrast between old and new, urban and rural in contemporary India. (IDA635, $23.00)

The House of Blue Mangoes

The House of Blue Mangoes


by David Davidar

  • LITERATURE
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 432 PAGES

Davidar's sweeping saga follows the traumas and triumphs of three generations of the Dorai family on Kerala's lush Coromandel Coast from 1899 through the tumult of independence. (IDA548, $13.99)

The Moor's Last Sigh

The Moor's Last Sigh


by Salman Rushdie

  • LITERATURE
  • 1997
  • PAPER
  • 435 PAGES

A sweeping family epic that tackles many of the most complex aspects about Indian culture. In his characteristically rich prose, Rushdie tells the history of India, set among the spice traders of Cochin. (IDA89, $16.00)

Birds of India

Birds of India


by Richard Grimmett | Carol Inskipp | Tim Inskipp

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 384 PAGES

Thoroughly revised, with 73 new plates and many others updated or repainted, the second edition of the masterful Birds of India now features all maps and text opposite the plates for quicker and easier reference. (FG43, $39.50)

Sri Lankan Wildlife

Sri Lankan Wildlife


by Gehan de Silva Wijeyeratne

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2007
  • PAPER
  • 144 PAGES

A concise, illustrated field guide to the plants, animals and habitats of Sri Lanka in the popular British series. (SRL18, $23.95)

More Recommendations

Here are some other groups of books that might be of interest

Longitude provides recommended reading for travelers in partnership with the leading tour operators and travel programs for hundreds of destinations worldwide. We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.