Michael Ondaatje is a literary phenomenon: a best-selling writer, one whose work is a stunning fusion of jazz rhythms, film montage technique, and profoundly beautiful language. Although he is best known as a novelist, Ondaatje's work also encompasses memoir, poetry, and film, and reveals a passion for defying conventional form. Ondaatje is himself an interesting intersection of cultures. Born in the former Ceylon of Dutch/Indian ancestry, he was raised in London, and is now a Canadian citizen. From the memoir of his childhood, Running in the Family, to his Governor-General's award-winning book of poetry, There's a Trick With a Knife I'm Learning To Do, to his classic novel, The English Patient, Michael Ondaatje casts a spell over his readers. And having won the British Commonwealth's highest honor - the Booker Prize - Ondaatje has taken his rightful place as a contemporary literary treasure.

Festivals: 2007 (spring)

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