In 1950, V. S. Naipaul travelled from Trinidad to England to take up a place at Oxford University. Over the next few years, letters passed back and forth between Naipaul and his family - particularly his beloved father Seepersad, but also his mother and siblings. The result is a fascinating chronicle of Naipaul's time at university; the love of writing that he shared with his father and their mutual nurturing of literary ambition; the triumphs and depressions of Oxford life; and the travails of his family back at home.
Letters Between a Father and Son is an engrossing collection continuing into the early years of V. S. Naipaul's literary career, touching time and again on the craft of writing, and revealing the relationships and experiences that formed and influenced one of the greatest and most enigmatic literary figures of our age.
`Rare and precious . . . if any modern writer was going to breathe a last gasp into the epistolary tradition, it was always likely to be V. S. Naipaul' New Statesman
V.S. Naipaul was born in Trinidad in 1932. He came to England on a scholarship in 1950. He spent four years at University College, Oxford, and began to write, in London, in 1954. He pursued no other profession. His novels include A House for Mr Biswas, The Mimic Men, Guerrillas, A Bend in the River, and The Enigma of Arrival. In 1971 he was awarded the Booker Prize for In a Free State. His works of nonfiction, equally acclaimed, include Among the Believers, Beyond Belief, The Masque of Africa, and a trio of books about India: An Area of Darkness, India: A Wounded Civilization and India: A Million Mutinies Now. In 1990, V.S. Naipaul received a knighthood for services to literature; in 1993, he was the first recipient of the David Cohen British Literature Prize. He received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2001. He lived with his wife Nadira and cat Augustus in Wiltshire, and died in 2018.