This comprehensive study of R.K. Narayan, the outstanding Indian novelist of his generation, provides an incisive analysis of the major issues of his fiction. Virtually all of his novels are set in the imaginary South Indian town of Malgudi, a solid, realistic setting for his tragi-comedies of human aberration and attainment. A key element of his fiction, including his best known novel The Guide, is the way Hindu fables and myths lie submerged beneath the surface of secular social comedy. Perhaps his greatest skill is as a storyteller who developed special styles to tell his elliptical, subtle and understated tales. His deceptively simple English and ironic outlook make him particularly accessible to Western readers and this lively and perceptive study allows a full appreciation of the depth and significance of a great Indian writer. --Book Jacket.