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A Year of Last Things : from the Booker Prize-winning author of The English Patient - Michael Ondaatje

A Year of Last Things

from the Booker Prize-winning author of The English Patient

By: Michael Ondaatje

Hardcover | 26 March 2024

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With A Year of Last Things, acclaimed novelist Michael Ondaatje returns to poetry, the form in which he began his career over fifty years ago

'My life always stops for a new book by Michael Ondaatje'
JHUMPA LAHIRI, author of The Namesake

'Timeless... A Year of Last Things is remarkable, incomparable'
TERRANCE HAYES, author of So to Speak

Born in Sri Lanka during the Second World War, Ondaatje was sent as a child to school in London, and later moved to Canada. While he has lived there since, these poems reflect the life of a writer, traveller and watcher of the world - describing himself as a 'mongrel', someone born out of diverse cultures.

Here, rediscovering the influence of every border crossed, he moves back and forth in time, from a childhood in Sri Lanka to Moli re's chair during his last stage performance, from icons in Bulgarian churches to the Californian coast and loved Canadian rivers, merging memory with the present, looking back on a life of displacement and discovery, love and loss. At first sight it is a glittering collection of fragments and memories - but small, intricate pieces of a life are precisely what matter most to Ondaatje. They make an emotional history. As he writes in the opening poem- 'Reading the lines he loves / he slips them into a pocket, / wishes to die with his clothes / full of torn-free stanzas / and the telephone numbers / of his children in far cities'. Poetry - where language is made to work hardest and burns with a gem-like flame - is what Ondaatje has returned to in this intimate history.

About the Author

Michael Ondaatje is the author of seven novels; a memoir, Running in the Family; a non-fiction book on film, The Conversations- Walter Murch and the Art of Editing Film; and several books of poetry, including The Cinnamon Peeler and Handwriting. The English Patient received the Booker Prize in 1992 and the Golden Man Booker in 2018, and was made into a film directed by Anthony Minghella. Anil's Ghost was awarded the Irish Times International Fiction Prize, the Giller Prize and the Prix Medicis. Born in Sri Lanka, Michael Ondaatje lives in Toronto.

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