July 20, 2006

Authors to read: Hari Kunzru

Before today, all I had heard about Hari Kunzru is that he is British-born but of 'Indian-origin' and that he writes very different imaginative novels.

I had heard of him when he wrote his first book, The Impressionist, a few years ago and recieved a £1.25 million advance for it!! (Review of The Impressionist and an interview).

Just learned that the "The Impressionist was named as the winner of the 5,000 John Llewellyn Rhys award, the second oldest literary prize in Britain, but for the past 15 years it has been sponsored by The Mail on Sunday. Kunzru rejected the award, citing the newspaper’s ‘editorial policy of vilifying and demonising refugees and asylum seekers’. Kunzru demanded that the paper donate the prize money to the Refugee Council."

Also his author bio at contemporarywriters.com mentions that : In 2003, Hari Kunzru was named by Granta magazine as one of twenty 'Best of Young British Novelists'.

Apparently he has two more books since viz. Transmission in 2004 (Review) and more recently a book of short stories, Noise, that that I had not heard about untill I just saw Jai Arjun Singh's review of the same.

Also read this piece of fiction, Beyond The Pleasure Principle, from him in the Guardian. Very difficult reading...not for light reading at 10.30 in the night, for sure. I'll have to try to read it again some other time!

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