Michael Ondaatje's "The English Patient" won the greatest-ever Man Booker Prize at the closing event of Royal Festival Hall at Southbank Centre in London on Sunday, celebrating five decades of the most respectful and prestigious literary award.
“The English Patient,” is about the tale of love and conflict during World War II, describes the lives of four characters brought together during World War II, told through the morphine-affected memories of a severely burned patient in 1992. “The English Patient is a compelling work of fiction, both poetic and philosophical, “according to the Baroness Helena Kennedy’s statement, a member of the Booker Prize Foundation. She said, “As we celebrate the prize’s 50th anniversary, it’s a testament to the impact and legacy of the Man Booker Prize that all of the winning books are still in print.” Ondaatje's book is a fabulous combination of "extraordinary" language, continual surprises and compelling characters.
The shortlisted novels were voted by the public, commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Man Booker prize. These novels were selected by a panel of judges among the 51 previous winners of the Man Booker and asked them to read the winning novels from one decade of the prize's history before the books faced the public vote on the Man Booker website. This honours the best novels written in English and published in Britain or Ireland.
Around 26 years ago, the story of the two books left everybody confused to choose which one should win the Man Booker in 1992 and the members of the foundation ended up with a tie between Michael Ondaatje and Barry Unsworth. But at last, in the wonderful evening of the event, Ondaatje for “The English Patient” being named the best winner of the Booker prize of the last 50 years.
At the closing ceremony of “Man Booker 50 festival”, Ondaatje said he had not reread The English Patient.