The In-Between World of Vikram Lallby M.G. Vassanji
Double Giller Prize winner M.G. Vassanji’s The In-Between World of Vikram Lall is a haunting novel of corruption and regret that brings to life the complexity and turbulence of Kenyan society in the last five decades. Rich in sensuous detail and historical insight, this is a powerful story of passionate betrayals and political violence, racial tension and the strictures of tradition, told in elegant, assured prose.
In interviews given when the novel was published, Vassanji commented that The In-Between World of Vikram Lall is the first of his books to deal with his memories of Kenya, where he spent the first 5 years of his life: “I remember these images of fear, of terror. And I thought I had to come back to that and see the whole Mau Mau episode from the Asian point of view. I had never written a book set in Kenya, where my father was from. And when I did, I just felt good about it, because I was going back to one part, one of many homes.”
M G Vassanji is the author of seven novels, two collections of short stories, a travel memoir about India, a memoir of East Africa, and a biography of Mordecai Richler. He is twice winner of the Giller Prize (1994, 2003) for best work of fiction in Canada; the Governor General's Prize (2009) for best work of nonfiction; the Harbourfront Festival Prize; the Commonwealth First Book Prize (Africa, 1990); and the Bressani Prize. The Assassin's Song was also shortlisted for the Giller Prize, the Governor General’s Prize, the Writers Trust Award, and India's Crossword Prize. His work has been translated into Dutch, French, German, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Latvian, Portuguese, Spanish, Turkish, and Swahili.
Vassanji has given lectures worldwide and written many essays, including introductions to the works of Robertson Davies, Anita Desai, and Mordecai Richler, and the autobiography of Mahatma Gandhi. In June 2015, MG Vassanji was awarded the Canada Council Molson Prize for the Arts.
M G Vassanji was born in Nairobi, Kenya and raised in Tanzania. He received a BS from the Massachussetts Institute of Technology and a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania, before going to live in Canada. He is a member of the Order of Canada and has been awarded several honorary doctorates. He lives in Toronto, and visits East Africa and India often