(Last Updated on : 30/06/2014)
The novels of R.K Narayan are manifested with the outlook of an blasé life infested with simplicity and gentle humor. His novels verbalize the down to earth life of the common ordinary individuals thriving to intermix tradition with modernization, thereby resulting in a tragicomic situation. Often depicting the Hindu tales of traditional Indian folklore, the novels of R.K Narayan are essentially rooted in the events from the everyday life. A sensitive and prolific writer R. K Narayan has made a thorough psychological probing of the individuals in the society and thus his novels are psycho anatomy on the obvious level. Not only the human condition, his novels rather depict certain truths of human life, which makes his novels more acclaimed among the common people.
Swami and Friends:
- Swami and Friends in the fictional backdrop of Malgudi represents the adolescent psychology, his growing pains out of the feeling of getting detached from the friend and the perpetual illusion of miasma.
- Set on the backdrop of Malgudi, the Guide relates a story of the tourist guide, entrenched in the ordinary lifestyle and the ethnicity of the land, finally shattered as a victim of superstitions and values.
The English Teacher:
- Enveloped with a timeless tale of love, the English Teacher depicts the life of an individual, who is a teacher of the school, where he was educated. The unpredictable upheavals of his life, with the death of his wife, dominate the entire novel, The English Teacher.
The Dark Room:
- The Dark Room, shifts from the normal trend of Narayan's novel in echoing the frustration of a tormented wife entrenched in the middle class family. With an aura of feminism, the novel is exceptionally symbolic
- The Printer of Malgudi: - Mr. Sampath portrays the intricacies of relationship, the ecstasy and agony of love through which the modern individuals are passing.
The Financial expert:
- The Financial Expert is the story of the proud moneylender, who was once proud of his occupation but shortly all on a sudden he lost everything becoming a destitute. Essentially a psychoanalysis, "The Financial Expert" depicts the ups and downs of the life of a modern man.
Waiting for the Mahatma:
- In the chaotic socio-political scenario of the 20th century, is woven the romantic relationship of two young souls in Narayan's celebrated novel "Waiting for Mahatma". Setting in the background of Gandhi's Quit India Movement, "Waiting For Mahatma" relates the tensions and agony of the individuals of the contemporary era.
The Bachelor of Arts:
- The Bachelor of Arts is the touching story of the adolescent mind moving towards maturity and the needs and the dilemmas in acquiring the Bachelor degree, however concludes with a comic tone.
- My Days is a memoir, narrating the life history of R.K. Narayan in its way of depicting the uncomplicated life of a simple man.
The Emerald Route:
- The Emerald Route is a travelogue narrating the cruise of R. K Narayan, around his hometown Karnataka.
A Horse and Two Goats:
- A Horse and Two Goats in a comic exposure narrates the conversation between two ignorant, one Indian and other an alien from New York. The conversations between the two bring to surface the essential difference between the East and the West and also depict the shallowness of the then Indians who were ready to sell their rich heritage cheaply.
- Lawley Road depicts the time when due to the administrative convenience the British Government renamed the streets and institutions of Malgudi to reflect nationhood. Moreover in a amusing way the story depicts that the political transition not only change the nation's identity but also affcts the individual's sense of order.
- Malgudi Days is an anthology of three short stories -"Swami and his friends", dealing with the life of a child and his ecstasy and agony shared with his friends, the second one is "The Bachelor of Arts" which unfolds a tormented soul confused to find out the true purpose in life and the third is "The Vendor of Sweets" depicting the generation gap and its effects between the father and son.
- Reluctant Guru is a hilarious juxtaposition unveiling the true face of India to those to whom India is a land of snake charmers and black magic. The story, an autobiographical one is an attempt to unfold the real nature of India, where the author himself is the embodiment of Guru.
Under the Banyan Tree:
- Under the Banyan Tree is an anthology of 28short stories depicting the lifestyle of the common people from all walks of life living in close harmony with each other.
An Astrologer's day and other short Stories:
- An Astrologer's day is a collection of several short stories depicting the life and different aspects of life including the humor, pathos, tragedy, love, loss, faith and finally a glimpse of hope that enlace the lives of the diverse figures in his make-believe village Malgudi.
God demons and Others:
- Gods, Demons and Others is a mythological stories depicting the historical and legendary ideas and beliefs infested the land.
The Ramayana and the Mahabharata:
- The Ramayana and the Mahabharata is a narrative retelling the stories of the legendary epics of India from the time immemorial.
The Man Eater of Malgudi:
- The Man Eater of Malgudi upholds the eternal struggle between the good and evil and finally the punishment of the evils bidding a poetic justice.
The Vendor of Sweets:
- The Vendor of Sweets develops with the ideology and principles of an aged sweet seller, who is young at heart. Unable to adjust with his son, ultimately self revelation develops in him and when he was about to desert worldly affection, suddenly the news that his son is arrested turns him towards the world.
A Tiger for Malgudi:
- A Tiger for Malgudi in a comic exposure depicts the transformation of a wild animal into a spiritual being thus attaining the knowledge of eternal truth. The profound novel is highly symbolic, aimed to point out the ruggedness of human existence in the contemporary era, thereby imbibes them to realize the essential reality of spirituality, the key of eternal peace.
- Talkative Man is the tale of an ordinary man in an extraordinary way. The story delineates a talkative man, who is apparently jobless detect the evil designs of a stranger who is supposed to come from a doctor making report on U.N.
The World of Nagaraj:
- The World of Nagaraj, mostly written in the form of dialogue actually depicts the human condition around the protagonist. The World of Nagaraj is the picture of the human condition in the protagonist's vision.
- Grandmother's Tales is apparently accessible for the children but it looks into the ancient India, where the child marriage was prevalent and the annas were considered as the currency.