Man Booker Prize-winning author of The English Patient and recipient of the Golden Booker, Michael Ondaatje’s newest novel is Warlight, a mesmerizing tale of violence and love, intrigue and desire. The dramatic story is set in the decade after World War II told through the lives of a small group of unexpected characters and two unwitting teenagers.
It is 1945, and London is still reeling from the Blitz and years of war. 14-year-old Nathaniel and his sister, Rachel, are apparently abandoned by their parents, left in the care of an enigmatic figure named The Moth. They suspect he might be a criminal, and grow both more convinced and less concerned as they get to know his eccentric crew of friends: men and women with a shared history, all of whom seem determined now to protect and educate Rachel and Nathaniel. But are they really what and who they claim to be? A dozen years later, Nathaniel begins to uncover all he didn’t know or understand in that time, and it is this journey – through reality, recollection, and imagination – that is told in this magnificent novel.
Michael Ondaatje is the author of six previous novels, a memoir, a nonfiction book on film, and several books of poetry. The English Patient won the Booker Prize and the Golden Man Booker; Anil’s Ghost won the Irish Times International Fiction Prize, the Giller Prize, and the Prix Médicis. Born in Sri Lanka, Michael Ondaatje now lives in Toronto.
“Warlight is a quiet new masterpiece from Michael Ondaatje…An elegiac thriller [with] the immediate allure of a dark fairy tale. In Warlight, all is illuminated, at first dimly then starkly, but always brilliantly.”