Michael Ondaatje (2012)

Michael Ondaatje

Michael Ondaatje first gained his literary reputation as a poet. His first books of poetry include The Dainty Monsters (1967), The Man with Seven Toes (1969) and Rat Jelly (1973). The Collected Works of Billy the Kid, an account of the factual and fictional life of the notorious outlaw, won the Governor General’s Award for poetry in 1970 and has been adapted for stage and produced at Stratford, Toronto and New York. To date, Ondaatje is the author of numerous novels, poems, plays, and an assortment of pieces in literary criticism. Though frequently distinguished for his literary works, Ondaatje's 1992 novel The English Patient, has received the most world wide acclaim, leading to its 1996 film adaptation. In addition to winning another Governor General's Award for fiction in 1992, it earned Ondaatje a share of the prestigious Booker Prize, the first ever awarded to a Canadian.