Book Review: The Last Nizam by John Zubrzycki

John Zubrzycki has pulled off a remarkable coup: The Last Nizam is the sort of amazing, jaw-dropping and almost completely unexplored and unwritten story that writers of non-fiction spend their lives dreaming of.
- William Dalrymple

One has to be exhilarated by the contradictions and wonders of this story. It is a tale told with a novelist’s vivacity, a first-class narrator’s eye for pace, and a poet’s sensibility for language, and is a delightful read.
- Thomas Keneally

The Last Nizam by John Zubrzycki is the story of the former rulers of Hyderabad – who had inestimable wealth and the possession of titles. The book describes their former glory and the conditions in India under the British rule. Chapter I – The Ghosts of Golconda squares up the brutal times of conquests where no emperor spared his equal; greed of feudal chiefs, zamindars, ministers was all a part of intrigue to win the mind of the ruling Emperor, or the Emperor’s successor! There was no clear line between legitimate and illegitimate… between fair and unfair. The book also gives the captivating account of wine, women and wealth that wove the tapestry of royalty.

John Zubrzycki has written a fabulous account of the Nizams of Hyderabad, and how their wealth dwindled; and how Mukarram Jah – the heir to India’s richest princely state gave up his kingdom and retired, eventually, as a forgotten person – leaving India, forever.

Geeta Chhabra

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