In November 2013 Farzana: The Tempestuous Life and Times of the Begum Samru was publshed by HarperCollins (India). This was Julia's last book before her death in 2011. It tells the rags-to-riches story of the most remarkable (and arguably the most notorious) woman in eighteenth century India. A milestone in our understanding of this extraordinary character, it carries a foreword by William Dalrymple and an afterword by John Keay.
For the fourth time, one of Conrad Birch's 'Rhythm of a Road Rallies' is following the Great Indian Arc of the Meridian from Kanya Kumari (Cape Comorin) to Dehra Dun — about 1600 miles. Conrad and his associates now know the topography of the Great Arc as well as anyone. The journey is usually made in a fleet of classic cars with accommodation in a tented sarai that would not have disgraced a Mughal emperor. For the Feb/March 2014 expedition he's using more conventional means of transport but without sacrificing anything in the way of luxury. Visit ROARR's website for more information.
At long last the current edition of India: A History is available from HarperCollins in ebook form. Quite why it has taken so long to get there is unclear. Nor does it make it a quicker read. But it does take up less room.