Running in the Family by Michael Ondaatje
Born in Sri Lanka, Ondaatje left his native country as a young man for England. He eventually moved to Canada. An internationally acclaimed poet and novelist, Ondaatje is best known for his 1992 Booker Prize-winning The English Patient. His 1982 memoir Running in the Family delicately balances the beauty and pain of his family’s Sri Lankan past. Ondaatje returned to Sri Lanka to try to come to terms with his early memories and his family’s personal troubles. As he tours the island and visits with extended family members and individuals that knew his ancestors, Ondaatje explores the country’s mixed colonial roots while examining his own eccentric, troubled, and brilliant family line. Ondaatje’s memoir, which included poetry and fiction, is praised for magnificent and insightful prose.