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Wendy Woodfill, Children's and World Languages Selector for the Hennepin County Library, recommends the following books set in India or about India.

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Fruits of India Fruits of India — Jill Hartley

Colorful and exotic, this series of board books (other titles are Flowers and Vegetables) takes young children on a visual journey to India. Ages 1 to 3.
Monsoon Afternoon Monsoon Afternoon — Kashmira Sheth

A young boy and his grandfather find much they can do together on a rainy day during monsoon season in India. Ages 5 to 8.
To Market! To Market! To Market! To Market! — Anushka Ravishankar

When her mother gives her change to buy whatever she wants at the market, an Indian girl has more fun seeing all of the possibilities and imagining all of the things she could be. Ages 4 to 8.
Mama's Saris Mama's Saris — Pooja Makhijani

When a young girl eyes her mother's suitcase full of gorgeous silk, cotton and embroidered saris, she decides that she, too, should wear one, even though she is too young for such clothing. Ages 5 to 8.
Toot's Tour of India Toot's Tour of India — Laura F. Marsh

Toot’s adventures in India really take off when he climbs aboard an elephant called Rohini for a tour around town. The two become fast friends after Toot shares his apple and water with Rohini. Later, to thank Toot for his kindness, she takes him to see the secret, sacred elephant pool where Toot meets all of Rohini’s family. Ages 4 to 8.
Ghost Catcher: A Bengali Folktale The Ghost Catcher: A Bengali Folktale — Martha Hamilton

A retelling of a traditional Bengali tale in which a kind and generous Indian barber, pressed by his father and then his wife to earn more money, cleverly persuades a ghost to bring him riches. Ages 6 to 9.
Do! Do! — Ramesh Hengadi

Do! is a set of action pictures rendered in the traditional Warli style of tribal art from Western India. Simple and dynamic—people are constantly on the move, doing something—Warli figures are like fluid pictograms. Children relate to this art style, and Do! can be used in many ways: as a picture book, to discover stories on each page, talk about village life, or draw pictures and stories in the Warli style. All ages.
Boys Without Names Boys Without Names —Kashmira Sheth

Eleven-year-old Gopal and his family leave their rural Indian village for life with his uncle in Mumbai, but when they arrive his father goes missing and Gopal ends up locked in a sweatshop from which there is no escape. Ages 8 to 12.
Saraswati's Way Saraswati's Way — Monika Schroeder

If the gods wanted Akash to have an education, he is told, they would give him one. But Akash has spent his entire twelve years poor and hungry. So he decides to take control of his own life and try for a scholarship to the city school where he can pursue his beloved math. But will challenging destiny prove to be more than he has bargained for? In this raw and powerful novel, fate and self-determination come together in unexpected ways, offering an unsentimental look at the realities of India. Ages 9 to 12.

Homeless Bird Homeless Bird — Gloria Whelan

Like many girls her age in India, thirteen-year-old Koly is getting married. When she discovers that the husband her parents have chosen for her is sickly boy with wicked parents, Koly wishes she could flee. According to tradition, though, she has no choice but to stay. Ages 9 to 12.
Slumgirl Dreaming: Rubina's Journey to the Stars Slumgirl Dreaming: Rubina's Journey to the Stars — Rubina Ali

The young actress describes her life growing up in the slums of Mumbai, her experiences on the set of the film "Slumdog Millionaire," and how her life has changed as a result of her role in the film. Ages 8 to 12.
Conch Bearer The Conch Bearer — Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Action, adventure, and magic are combined in this exotic, compelling quest fantasy by a distinguished author of adult fiction and poetry. Set in contemporary India, the story opens in a poor section of Calcutta, where 12-year-old Anand is entrusted with a conch shell imbued with mystical powers. Ages 8 to 12.
Climbing the Stairs Climbing the Stairs — Padma Venkatraman

Fifteen-year-old Vidya dreams of going to college, an unusual aspiration for a girl living in British occupied India during World War II. Then tragedy strikes, and Vidya and her brother are forced to move into a traditional household with their extended family, where women are meant to be married, not educated. Ages 12 and up.
Secret Keeper Secret Keeper — Mitali Perkins

When Asha's father goes off to America and leaves his daughters behind in Calcutta, they feel constrained by their life with their traditional uncle and his family, but a friendship with a local boy helps to ease Asha's pain. Ages 12 and up.
Tiger Moon Tiger Moon — Antonia Michaelis

Safia tries to escape her fate as the wife of a cruel merchant by telling stories of Farhad the thief, his companion Nitish the white tiger, and their efforts to save a kidnapped princess from becoming the bride of a demon king. Ages 12 and up.

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