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Suketu Mehta, Maximum City (Vintage, 2005).
Impressive reportage from Bombay (which, as Mehta explains, he does not call “Mumbai”). Maximum City was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and won a variety of other honors. Mehta has a talent for insinuating himself into a variety of milieus and getting people from all walks of life to talk to him. Among the subjects getting sustained treatment are Bombay’s politics, crime, slums, show business, and bombings.
Mehta’s web page links to a wealth of reviews and other materials. Metacritic.com aggregates reviews and links to some of them. C.W. Thompson reviews the book at PopMatters. Uday Benegal reviews it for The Village Voice. Listen to this review on NPR’s Fresh Air. Akash Kapur reviews it for The New York Times. Karan Mahajan interviewed Mehta for The Believer. Steve Portigal, Shiva and Santosh like it. Sunshine is not a fan, nor is Jaya Jha.