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Reading and Writing: A Personal Account

3.39  ·  Rating Details  ·  110 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
I was eleven, no more, when the wish came to me to be a writer; and then very soon it was a settled ambition. But for the young V. S. Naipaul, there was a great distance between the wish and its fulfillment. To become a writer, he would have to find ways of understanding three very different cultures: his family's half-remembered Indian homeland, the West Indian colonial s ...more
Hardcover, 64 pages
Published February 28th 2000 by New York Review Books (first published 1968)
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A writer who does not boast about his life - I liked it. What I especially liked was his speech for getting the Nobel Prize for Literature, although he picked up the same topics he already referred to in his essays forming the autobiography.
V.S.Naipaul has a writing style that I think many people can identify with. Enjoy it - and don't hesitate to read it if you have no idea who Naipaul is. He'll tell you in here.
Jean-sylvain Brochu
Jan 12, 2015 Jean-sylvain Brochu rated it really liked it
L'ouvrage comporte trois segments: lisant et écrivant; l'écrivain et l'Inde, deux mondes; discours de réception du prix Nobel. Regard fascinant et éclairant sur la littérature par un écrivain singulier, originaire de Chaguanas dans la colonie anglaise de Trinidad. Une oeuvre à découvir.
Brittani Sonnenberg
A memoir that sheds light not only on the author's reading and writing life, but also on uncomfortable crawl spaces between cultures.
Maurice Carlos Ruffin
The downside is that this is a disorganized, meandering book that doesn't seem know whether it's an autobiographical recounting of Naipaul's early life or a somewhat cautionary tale for would be writers. And at only 64 pages, is there really any room for wandering?

Probably yes. The upside of this little volume is that the short sections that soar make up for the parts that ping pong around. Naipaul's vision is spot on when he writes about capturing your own past to create literature and also whe
Jan 24, 2015 Chattynatty rated it it was ok
I liked the first part but towards the end got lost in what he was trying to say- felt lost.
Rehan Abd Jamil
Sep 14, 2015 Rehan Abd Jamil rated it really liked it
A father's dream became a reality..
Ryan Chapman
May 04, 2009 Ryan Chapman rated it did not like it
Shelves: nonfiction, essays
In interviews and in this slim collection, one overwhelmingly gets the sense that Naipaul would be insufferable in person. He seems incapable of seeing the world from anyone else's viewpoint. This is not a comment on his fiction - I'm aware most of my favorite novelists are jerks - but it made for poor reading here. Steer clear, friends, steer clear.
Oct 01, 2013 Cecilia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reading-writing
Charmerande essä om hur en författare föds ur ett blandat kulturarv. Hur han mödosamt hittar sin litterära röst.

"Ändå fortsatte jag att tänka på mig själv som författare. Det handlande knappast om verkliga ambitioner utan snarare om en sorts självuppfattning, en dröm om frihet, en idé om något ädelt."
Aug 11, 2008 CR rated it it was amazing
Naipaul is so complex. He has a point of view. This book, for me, more than any other of his works, showed me why he writes as he does. And his discussion of the origin of the novel at the book's end is beautifully written.
Bartlett Morgan
Mar 28, 2012 Bartlett Morgan rated it really liked it
I was pleased by this collection of thoughts by Naipaul.
I have no desire to write but certainly I want to understand the factors at play when my favourite authors get down to business. This memoir aided that effort for me.
May 28, 2008 Ed rated it liked it
Naipaul is reportedly not a nice man, but these essays are quite nice.
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Naipaul was born and raised in Trinidad, to which his grandfathers had emigrated from India as indentured servants. He is known for the wistfully comic early novels of Trinidad, the bleaker novels of a wider world remade by the passage of peoples, and the vigilant chronicles of his life and travels, all written in characteristic, widely admired, prose.

At 17, he won a Trinidad Government scholarshi
More about V.S. Naipaul...

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