A worthy successor to V. S. Naipaul, Rohinton Mistry illuminates India -- particularly 1970s India under Indira Ghandi -- in finely wrought novels such as A Fine Balance and Such a Long Journey. He has a gift for infusing tales of strife with humor and unstinting detail.
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Date of Birth:
Place of Birth:
B. S. in mathematics and economics, University of Bombay; B.A. in English and philosophy, University of Toronto, 1983
Governor General's Award and the Commonwealth Writers Prize for Such a Long Journey, 1991; Commonwealth Writers Prize and Giller Prize for A Fine Balance, 1995
|The Best Book to Read First|
|A Fine Balance|
Ever since Oprah selected this title for her book club in fall of 2001, readers have been moved to experience Mistry's power for creating detailed character while indicting political and social injustice. He accomplishes this in A Fine Balance, the story of four unlikely apartment-mates in 1971 Bombay.
|Spreading the Word|
|Mistry had already won the University of Toronto’s Hart House Literary Contest once when he set out to win it again in 1983, and succeeded. The difference this second time around was that short-story writer Mavis Gallant headed up the jury; and she not only gave Mistry’s story “Auspicious Occasion” top honors, she recommended it to the editors of The New Press Anthology: Best Canadian Short Fiction. The exposure helped win Mistry a writing grant, allowing him to devote himself to writing full time.|