R.K. Narayan was born in Madras in 1906. His first novel, Swami and Friends and its successor, The Bachelor of Arts, are both set in the fictional town of Malgudi. Apart from these, Narayan wrote twelve other novels. Narayan has also authored five collections of short stories, two travel books, two volumes of essays, a volume of memoirs, and re-told legends and epics. Narayan, who lived to be ninety-four, died in 2001.