Samrat Upadhyay

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Samrat Upadhyay
Native nameसम्राट उपाध्यायl
BornKathmandu, Nepal
ResidenceBloomington, Indiana
OccupationProfessor at Indiana University, writer
Notable workFirst Nepalese writer published from west Arresting God in Kathmandu
AwardsWhiting Award, 2001

Samrat Upadhyay (Nepali: सम्राट उपाध्याय) is a Nepalese writer, born in 1963, who writes in English. Upadhyay is a professor of creative writing and has previously served as the Director of the Creative Writing Program at Indiana University.[1] He is the first Nepali-born fiction writer writing in English to be published in the West.[2] He was born and raised in Kathmandu, Nepal, and came to the United States in 1984 at the age of twenty-one. He lives with his wife and daughter in Bloomington, Indiana.

In 2001, Upadhyay won a Whiting Award for fiction. He was an English professor at Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea, Ohio before moving to Indiana in 2003.

His books specially portray the current situation in Nepal, which Upadhyay views largely through the lens of contemporary American realist fiction. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Upadhyay is "like a Buddhist Chekhov."[3]


Arresting God in Kathmandu (2001)[edit]

First published by Houghton Mifflin Company in 2001, Arresting God in Kathmandu is Upadhyay's first book. It is a collection of nine short stories. With Arresting God in Kathmandu Upadhyay won a Whiting Award.

The stories
1. The Good Shopkeeper
2. The Cooking Poet
3. Deepak Misra's Secretary
4. The Limping Bride
5. During the Festival
6. The Room Next Door
7. The Man with Long Hair
8. This World
9. A Great Man's House

The Guru of Love (2003)[edit]

First published by Houghton Mifflin Company in 2003, The Guru of Love is Upadhyay's second book and first full-length novel. The Guru of Love was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year 2003.

It is not the basis for the 2008 Mike Myers film The Love Guru.

The Royal Ghosts (2006)[edit]

First published by Houghton Mifflin Company in 2006, The Royal Ghosts is Upadhyay's third book, a collection of nine short stories.

The stories
1. A Refugee
2. The Wedding Hero
3. The Third Stage
4. Supreme Pronouncements
5. The Weight of a Gun
6. Chintamani's Women
7. Father, Daughter
8. A Servant in the City
9. The Royal Ghosts

Buddha's Orphans (2010)[edit]

Published by Houghton Mifflin in 2010, Buddha's Orphans is Upadhyay's fourth book and second novel. Using Nepal's political upheavals of the past century as a backdrop, it tells the story of an orphan boy, Raja, and the girl he is fated to love, Nilu, a daughter of privilege. Their love story scandalizes both families and takes readers through time and across the globe, through the loss of and search for children, and through several generations, hinting that perhaps old bends can, in fact, be righted in future branches of a family tree.

The City Son (2014)[edit]


External links[edit]