Books › Empires of the Indus

One of the longest rivers in the world, the Indus rises in Tibet, flows west across India, and south through Pakistan. For millennia it has been worshipped as a god; for centuries used as a tool of imperial expansion. Today it is the glue of Pakistan’s fractious union.

Empires of the Indus follows the river upstream and back in time, on a voyage through two thousand miles of geography and five millennia of history, through a landscape where the past still resonates today.

Winner – The Royal Society of Literature Jerwood Prize, Somerset Maugham Award, Dolman Travel Prize (UK), La Toison d’Or du Livre d’Aventure Vécue (France), Sufi Shah Inayat Writer Award (Pakistan), Premio Hemingway Reportage (Italy)
Best Books of 2010 – Barnes & Noble Review
Books of the Year 2008 – Susan Elderkin: The Financial Times, Fatima Bhutto: New Statesman, Tahmima Anam: Granta

“Empires of the Indus is a marvellous book, so insightful and empathetic, a work of literature as well as scholarship…”

— Ramachandra Guha, India After Gandhi

“Alice Albinia is the most extraordinary traveler of her generation…. A journey of astonishing confidence and courage.”

— Rory Stewart, The Places in Between

“The best kind of travel writer”

— Peter Parker, The Daily Telegraph

UK book cover by artist and illustrator Anna Bhushan