The book Lucknow Boy: A Memoir is about the author Vinod Mehta who grew up in Lucknow, and it traces his extraordinary journey throughout his colourful career. He was born into an army family who migrated from Pakistan during the tumultuous days of the partition. The book describes interesting anecdotes during Mehta's interactions with various celebrities from fields such as politics, business, entertainment and the media.
Vinod Mehta graduated in Arts with a third class degree and left home to start his career. He started out with a series of jobs, including one of a factory hand in suburban Britain. It was in Britain that his love for journalism grew and was inspired by The New Statesman, The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph.
He returned to India and took up a job with Debonair, the Indian equivalent of Playboy. The author also talks about his efforts in establishing The Sunday Observer and the weekly newsmagazine, Outlook. These publications turned him into one of the most influential personalities in journalistic circles. The book gives a ringside view of all the major events of the time, scandals and spicy gossip. He recalls how he was wooed and then unceremoniously sacked by media proprietors when their much touted freedom of the press crumbled under political pressure. He also provides a firsthand account of his encounters with leading personalities from various spheres that include Shobha De, V.S. Naipaul, Salman Rushdie, Sonia Gandhi and others. The book holds thirty years of experience that aspiring journalists can take tips and advice from.
Vinod Mehta has authored other books which include Mr.Editor: How Close are you to the PM?, Meena Kumari, Bombay: A Private View and The Sanjay Story. The hardcover edition of Lucknow Boy: A Memoir, published by Penguin Viking, is available online. It is listed under ISBN 10 0670085294 and ISBN 13 9780670085293.