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Jasvinder Badh

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Gandhi and Churchill: The Rivalry That Destroyed an Empire and Forged Our Age
Gandhi and Churchill: The Rivalry That Destroyed an Empire and Forged Our Age
by Arthur Herman
Edition: Paperback
Price: £11.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Two complete ends of the spectrum - One for Empire and the other Against it, 11 Jun. 2014
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This books is a great comparison between the two great leaders and a lot of in depth detail is discussed regarding their early lives and how they entered into politics. What comes across is that Churchill hated Gandhi as he wanted the Empire to continue as like Randolph Churchill maintained that without it Britain would no longer exist or be of any consequence in world affairs. Gandhi was almost on a divine mission to achieve Indian independence and nothing stopped him from achieving this mission.


Empire of the Sikhs: The Life and Times of Maharaja Ranjit Singh
Empire of the Sikhs: The Life and Times of Maharaja Ranjit Singh
by Patwant Singh
Edition: Paperback

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic account of the Maharaja, 2 Jun. 2014
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Its very rare to find any books that detail the life of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. This book starts at the very beginning of his life as well as prior to his birth and discusses the Misl that he belonged to and how it came into existence. Once of the surprises from the book was the discussion regarding Misl's fighting against one another. This was a fact that I was not aware of. The administration capabilities of someone who was uneducated is phenomenal as well as keeping the British at bay as well as out manouvering the Afghans. Perhaps the most surprising thing to emerge from my perspective was that the Koh-i-noor diamond in fact exchanged hands numerous times. All in all this is a very good account.


Freedom at Midnight
Freedom at Midnight
by Larry Collins
Edition: Paperback
Price: £13.78

5.0 out of 5 stars If there is one book to read on Indian independence, then this is the one, 19 May 2014
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This review is from: Freedom at Midnight (Paperback)
I have read many books on the Indian Independence as well as partition but this sets the standard. There is so much intricate detail about all the relevant parties involved in the Independence/Partition on India as well as the horrific violence that followed. The book is very unbiased in its approach as it criticises all parties where necessary.


The Indian Mutiny
The Indian Mutiny
by Julian Spilsbury
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lots of detail and very unbiased in discussing where the faults lay for the mutiny, 19 May 2014
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This review is from: The Indian Mutiny (Paperback)
There is a lot of detail in the book regarding the military campaign by the British during the mutiny which is what I think makes this book. A lot of precise information regarding sepoy divisions and why they rallied against the British adds to it as generally it is accepted that the cause was greased cartridges. This book goes on to show that there were a number of events that led up to the mutiny. The sections on Delhi and Lucknow in particular are well detailed and go to show that the sepoy revolt lacked real leadership.


The Last Mughal: The Fall of Delhi, 1857
The Last Mughal: The Fall of Delhi, 1857
by William Dalrymple
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.38

5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic book describing the last days of a crumbling Mughal empire and the mutiny that decided its fate, 6 May 2014
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Bahadur Shah Zafar is a character that you end up feeling pity for as he was probably the most unsuitable ruler in Mughal history. The unfortunate person was more interested in poetry and culture than keeping alive his dynasty. What comes across quite clearly is his lack of leadership as well as not quite knowing where his allegiances lay. The book also covers the start of the mutiny and how that affected Zafar and even there he wasn't quite sure who to back. Ending up in exile in Rangoon the Mughal empire ended in a very low key affair and the British cemented their place as the rulers for another 90 years.


The Great Partition: The Making of India and Pakistan
The Great Partition: The Making of India and Pakistan
by Yasmin Khan
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.00

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The human element of partition, 27 Mar. 2014
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This book is fantastic as its one of those rare one that includes the storied of ordinary citizens in the partition of India. The book focuses primarily on the partition of Punjab and Bengal but also covers a lot of the violence in places such as Delhi, Bombay, Nagpur, UP, etc. A very balanced opinion is given where Hindu's Muslims and Sikhs are blamed for the violence. Not even in their wildest nightmares could the British have imagined what was to come when date for British withdrawal was announced. As you would expect there are many stories of savagery and acts that can only be classed as evil. But in amonst those are also stories of people who protected and saved communities from another religion. The interesting thing to come out quite clearly in this book was that muslims were glad the partition had been agreed but those who lived on the wrong side of the border never imagined for a moment that their area wouldn't be in the newly create Pakistan. Up until that point the border was imagined by most to include vast expanses of land which never materialised. The distrust of Congress and the Muslim League comes through very clearly and goes to show that partition was inevitable once the trust had vanished.


Indian Summer: The Secret History of the End of an Empire
Indian Summer: The Secret History of the End of an Empire
by Alex von Tunzelmann
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic book on partition and and all the central key players who played their roles in it, 21 Mar. 2014
I was a bit sceptical when I bought this book, primarly because I thought it would be just another Pro-British account of the whole affiar but I couldn't have been more wrong. The author Alex Von Tunzelmann does a good job in desecting the partition and dealing with the key players is quite some detail. Critisicm of Mountbatten, Nehru, Gandhi and Jinnah makes up some portion of the book although I feel Jinnah comes out of this the worst. The only downside to the book is that the beginning focuses on pointless detail and information on Mountbatten which actually make him look as if he wouldn't look out of place in a Carry On movies. Apart from this minor negative I would have given it 5 stars.


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