10 Best Books in Urdu (+ Novels And Poetry)

A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies.

George r.r. martin

Introduction:

A book is a vital resource that changes the way people think. Books shape our society and they take a reader to another world.

This article is about the best books in Urdu that you should read. The Urdu writers have written some masterpieces that people are unaware of.

The Urdu literature has flourished since centuries because of a reason. It has given people a way to transfer their ideas and thoughts from person to person.

The best books in Urdu are important to read because they encourage us for a change, they motivate us to achieve something big and they allow us to take the right path.

The Best Books in Urdu
Photo by Kimberly Farmer on Unsplash

The Best Books in Urdu:

Raja Gidh:

Raja Gidh is a novel by Banu Qudsia which is widely read. This Urdu novel is written by Banu Qudsia who is a writer and a spiritualist. Raja Gidh is the reason for her fame.

The word “Gidh” refers to a vulture (Gidh is an Urdu word) and “Raja” is a Hindu synonym for King. Therefore, the title of the novel refers to the kingdom of vultures.

Vulture is an animal that feeds on carcasses of dead animals and this is used as a metaphor to portray the trespassing of moral and ethical limits imposed by religion or society.

Banu Qudsia has penned this novel based on the Islamic concept of Halal (permitted) and Haram (forbidden). According to Banu Qudsia, Haram transmits genetically. To support her theory, she elaborates that whether Haram is discharged financially, morally or emotionally, it affects a person.

The novel contains various psychological and social aspects that we all need to understand. Banu Qudsia is one of those writers that narrates her theory in a way that is acceptable to all of the readers. In fact, a reader finds similarities between themselves and one of the characters.

The plot of the story contains Seemin Shah (who belongs to an upper-middle-class family) who loves her class fellow, Aftab. Seemin Shah is a very attractive girl and that is why she attracts a lot of men around her.

Although Aftab (a young Kashmiri boy) also loves her, he is very sensitive when it comes to the prestige of his family. Therefore, he cannot marry her because he cannot rise above his family values and marry a girl who is not acceptable to his parents.

Thus, the lengthy story of separation starts. Therefore, Raja Gidh is a story of romance and morality that is unique in its own way.

Over Coat:

Although Over Coat is a short story, the lesson it contains is very big (that is why it is included in the best books in Urdu). This Urdu story is penned by Ghulam Abbas who is one of the most prominent writers of Urdu.

The story highlights important themes such as showoff and the exhibitionist attitude of the people. The main character of the story is a young man who is poor but he wears an overcoat to hide his garments.

This is because he does not want people to interpret his status. When this young man comes into an accident with a lorry, his reality is exposed to the people.

The main reason Ghulam Abbas writes this story is to highlight the class conscious society that tries to pretend what they are not.

In terms of description, Ghulam Abbas beautifully explains the emotions (of the characters) and the environment. The narration is easy to understand and this is the reason, the “overcoat” is one of the best Urdu books you should read.

More About Ghulam Abbas:

Ghulam Abbas was a short story writer who was born in Amritsar, India. The stories he penned have prominent status in the Urdu literature. He was a man who was never greedy for fame. He was a literary genius and he earned respect due to his writings.

Apart from overcoat, Aanandi is also one of the reason for his fame.

Aag Ka Darya:

Best Books in Urdu
Image Source – Google | Image by – goodreads

This is one of the best Urdu (fiction) novel of the twentieth century. The novel was first published in 1959 and it is about the fate of four characters over two and half millennia. The four characters are:

  1. Gautam (Buddhist)
  2. Champa (Hindu)
  3. Kamal (Muslim)
  4. Cyril (Christian)

The book talks about the different relations between the four over the period of different eras. Some of them are:

  • War and Romance
  • Possession and dispossession
  • Dramas, letters and diaries.

The writer’s style is witty and lyrical and she questions the relevance of religion in the life of the Indians. This is a thought-provoking book (highlighting the history of the Indians). The writer beautifully explains the cultural diversity in India and emerges as a voice of the Indians.

More about the author (Qurratulain Hyder):

She was a short story writer, an academic and a journalist. The book “Aag Ka Darya” (River of Fire) is one of the reason for her fame. She belonged to a writer family.

Her father Sajjad Haider was a prominent figure (and he also penned some of the best books in Urdu) in India and he was a short story writer. Moreover, her mother (Nazar Zahra) was also a novelist. Therefore, her childhood had a significant impact on her as she assimilated the language skills from her father and mother.

Peer-e-Kamil (The Perfect Mentor):

This is one of the best Urdu novels by Umera Ahmad that focuses on one’s journey for the right or wrong. The protagonist (the main character) of the story of Salaar Sikander who has an outstanding IQ.

Umera Ahmad repeatedly says that Salaar has an IQ level of more than 150. Her critics say that the repetition of this expression is very annoying. The truth is that Umera Ahmad develops the character with this trick.

Salaar Sikander gets married to Imama Hashmi who is a brilliant medical student and she unexpectedly leads Salaar to the righteous path, the path of the last and final Prophet of Islam.

The novel discusses the fact that it is upon a person to select the path, whether it is right or not. She emphasises that the spiritual awakening of Salaar was due to his effort to follow the path of the Holy Prophet (PBUH).

The title, Peer-e-Kamil (The perfect Mentor) refers to the final Prophet who is a role model for every Muslim in each and every aspect of life. Therefore, a Muslim can only attain the love of God if he follows the path told by the Holy Prophet (PBUH).

Umera Ahmad is one of those Urdu writers that know how to grab the attention of her readers. She does not hesitate to produce wonderful novels and this is the reason for her fame. Peer-e-Kamil is one of her book that is considered one of the best book in Urdu.

Diwan e Ghalib (Poetry):

Mirza Asadullah Khan Ghalib is one of those names of Urdu that everyone is familiar with. He is a man who used to write simply as well as complex poetry. He was a classic Urdu and Persian poet from India.

Diwan e Ghalib is one of his best work. Ghalib presents 104 Ghazals, 7 varied Nazms and 68 selected letters in the Urdu language (with parallel translation in English and translation in Roman script for the Persians who are not familiar with the Urdu script).

Best Books in Urdu

The book also provides an introduction about Mirza Ghalib and his work. Similarly, the significant events of his life are also mentioned in Diwan e Ghalib.

The sensual poetry of Ghalib and his sarcasm is a reason that people like to read his work. Even his works that were penned hundreds of years ago are still relevant to the date.

He explains his emotions and feelings in detail but still for a lot of people, he is a very difficult poet who has written some best books in Urdu.

Muhammad Bin Qasim (by Naseem Hijazi):

Sharif Hussain (also known as Naseem Hijazi) earned fame due to his historical Islamic writings. He was a man who did great research before he penned anything and this is the reason, he managed to writes books such as Muhammad Bin Qasim.

Hajjaj Bin Yusuf asked his nephew, Muhammad Bin Qasim, to save the pilgrims who were captured in Sindh by Raja Dahir and his forces. Muhammad Bin Qasim attacked the ship of Raja Dahir and he rescued the pilgrims.

Muhammad Bin Qasim later captured the entire Sindh and introduced Islam in the Middle East. “Bab-ul-Islam” was the title that was given to Sindh which means “The Gateway of Islam”.

Why Read Muhammad Bin Qasim?

Naseem Hijazi beautifully elaborates the Islamic history of Muhammad Bin Qasim capturing his. The description of the characters and their emotions is one of the best things about this book.

This is a must-read book for the lovers of historical fiction. Furthermore, he captured the golden moments from history in a remarkable way.

Shikwa and Jawab-i-Shikwa by Allama Iqbal:

The word “Shikwa” means complaint and in this, Iqbal complains with God. “Jawab-i-Shikwa” means “the answer to the complaint”. Although most of Iqbal’s poetry was in Persian, some of his Urdu writings are a masterpiece.

In Shikwa (1909), Allama Iqbal put forward his views regarding Islam and he talks about the lost legacy of Islam and the Muslims. He reminds Muslims about their wonderful past and he encourages Muslim to take pride in it.

Therefore, Shikwa is Iqbal’s complaint to God about the downfall of the Muslims. However, when Iqbal penned this, he faced a lot of criticism.

To clear the doubts of the Muslim scholars, he wrote Jawab-i-Shikwa (1913). It is God’s reply to Iqbal’s complaint. He clears the fact to the Muslims that God has not forgotten them, instead the Muslims have forgotten God.

This is among of the best books in Urdu as Iqbal closely observed his religion and the day-to-day practices of the Muslims.

Aik Din:

This Urdu novel is written by Banu Qudsia who talks about one’s destiny. The title implies “One Day” in English. This story is very close to reality as it is based on social reformation. Banu Qudsia writes the novel in a classic way.

She depicts “Time” and how circumstances change with time. Therefore with time, the feelings, emotions and the association with things also change. Moreover, the story highlights an important aspect of fate that sometimes man thinks something else and something else happens.

Banu Qudsia elaborates how small events in life can completely change the course of life. In short, the tragedy with Amjad teaches important lessons about Fate (destiny) and its link with humanity.

Therefore, this is among the best books in Urdu for Youth as the concept of destiny is directed beautifully by Banu Qudsia.

Humsafar:

This is a romantic novel written by Farhat Ishtiaq. The story is about Ashar and Khirad’s relationship with their daughter Hareem who unexpectedly bridges the gap between the two.

The writer uses the technique of flashback repeatedly with Ashar and Khirad. This story was adapted and later dramas and movies were produced on the same topic.

In the story, Hareem suffers from Congenital heart disease and therefore she requires an immediate surgery. The novel also tells about the marriage of Ashar and Kharid in unusual circumstances.

The disease of Hareem brings Ashar and Khirad close to each other dispute a lot of misunderstandings. The book is a wonderful example of how a writer puts life into the characters.

The book is based upon the reality that how misunderstandings can ruin the strong bonds.

The writer depicts the emotions of all the characters in a wonderful way and it is above the scope of this article to explain each and every aspect of this book and this is why it is among the best books in Urdu.

Bano By Razia Butt:

Best Books in Urdu

This is a novel by Razia Butt who was an Urdu novelist and playwright from Pakistan. The novel talks about the days before and after the partition of the Indian subcontinent and the emotions of the people related to it.

Similarly, the events of the Partition have an important effect on the story. It is a sad reality that many people lost their lives during the partition and Razia Butt elaborates the patriotism among the people at that moment.

The book also talks in detail that why was partition necessary (and the creation of Pakistan) and how did the people play their role to achieve it. The sacrifices of the ancestors are also discussed which gives the reader chills.

This is included in the best books in Urdu because the novel plays an important role in increasing the patriotism of the Youth. It is important for us to understand that violence is not the solution to any problem.

Instead, a possible approach should be adopted as partition was accepted by the Indian leaders to settle the disputes among the Muslims and the Hindus.

Conclusion:

With this, the article on the best books in Urdu has come to an end. It is very important to revive the culture of book reading because the Urdu writers have penned some masterpieces that we should review.

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