Michael Ondaatje wins the Golden Man Booker Prize

Michael Ondaatje has been named the winner of the Golden Man Booker Prize for his novel, The English Patient.

The special one-off award celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Man Booker Prize, and is awarded to the ‘best work of fiction from the last five decades of the prize’. A shortlist of five novels was selected by a panel of five judges, each one representing a decade of the prize, and the public then voted to decide the winner.

Ondaatje’s 1992 winning novel was selected by author Kamila Shamsie who said: ‘ The English Patient is that rare novel which gets under your skin and insists you return to it time and again, always yielding a new surprise or delight.’ The story moves between a nurse tending a horribly burned man in an Italian villa at the end of the second world war, and a tragic love affair from the man’s past.

On winning the award, Ondaatje praised the other shortlisted titles – In a Free State by V.S. Naipaul, Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively, Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel and Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders. He also said he felt it was important to acknowledge the authors who never won the Booker prize, and specifically named William Trevor, Barbara Pym and Alice Munro.

In the two previous ‘Best of the Bookers’ surveys, which were alternately carried out for the award’s 25th and 40th anniversaries, were both won by Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children.

You can find out more about the Golden Man Booker Prize here.

The English Patient

The English Patient

Michael Ondaatje

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