R.K. Narayan was born on October 10, 1906 at Number 1, Vellala Street in Purasawalkam, Chennai. He was born in his grandmother's house where much of his early childhood and school years were spent. Later on, he moved to Mysore, to his father's place. Narayan's academic grades were not at per during his school and early college days. His two earliest full-length novels, 'Swami and Friends' and 'The Bachelor of Arts', describe some of his trials and efforts during this period. He was advised to take up a teaching profession or any government job. But R.K. had already made up his mind to becoming a writer.
During his journey to be a writer he wrote for various magazines and 'The Hindu'. At that time he falls in love with a girl who subsequently becomes his wife. In his lifetime he wrote fifteen novels, five volumes of short stories, a number of travelogues and collection of non-fiction, English translation of Indian epics, and the memoirs "My Days". All these have created a strong base for R.K.Narayan in world literature. People connected with art and literature readily remember his name with his make-believe place Malgudi.
The Financial Expert was the first of his works published in the United States in the year of 1952. This is also created at the backdrop of Narayan's fictitious village Malgudi. The protagonist here is a 'Financial Expert' Margayya. He is a man of many hopes but consequently he has a few resources. He usually spends his time under a banyan tree and distributes financial advice to those willing to pay for his knowledge. He is a man of many ambitions or high hopes. This books also takes some steps into psychological analysis. Here at this book Narayan incorporated his style of storytelling into his character Margayya. He brings forth the rich imagery of indian life with all the absorving details and also intense storytelling. This book traces the rise and fall of Margayya. He is proud, imaginative moneylender. In due course of time with all ups and downs in life he becomes rich but darkness comes in his own life as his son becomes spoiled. When he lost all his money his son denies to sit under the banyan tree so at his old age he himself decides to sit under the tree and starts all over again.
Being published by several publishers like University of Chicago, William Heinemann Ltd., Vintage, Time Inc., Mandarin, Time incorporated, etc. 'The financial expert' truly illustrates the humorous aspects in life.
Though in 'The financial expert' there is a hidden touch of comedy but it also carries the innermost meaning of life that we come alone in this world and we have also to go alone. No one is there to help out. This story tries to delve deep in our life and show the innermost truth.
(Last Updated on : 06-01-2009)
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