Kiran Desai

Kiran Desai (born 3 September 1971) is an Indian author. Her novel The Inheritance of Loss won the 2006 Man Booker Prize[1] and the National Book Critics Circle Fiction Award.[2]In January 2015, The Economic Times, India's leading business publication, listed her as one of 20 "most influential" global Indian women.[3]

Kiran Desai
Desai at PEN Gala, 5 May 2015
Born (1971-09-03) 3 September 1971
New Delhi, India
Notable works
Notable awardsMan Booker Prize
RelativesAnita Desai (mother)

Early and personal life

Kiran Desai is the daughter of Anita Desai, herself short-listed for the Booker Prize on three occasions. She was born in Delhi, then spent the early years of her life in Pune and Mumbai. She studied in the Cathedral and John Connon School. She left India at 14, and she and her mother then lived in England for a year, and then moved to the United States, where she studied creative writing at Bennington College, Hollins University, and Columbia University.[4]


Her first novel, Hullabaloo in the Guava Orchard, was published in 1998 and received accolades from such notable figures as Salman Rushdie.[5] It won the Betty Trask Award,[6] a prize given by the Society of Authors for the best new novels by citizens of the Commonwealth of Nations under the age of 35.[7]

Her second book, The Inheritance of Loss, (2006) was widely praised by critics throughout Asia, Europe and the United States. It won the 2006 Man Booker Prize, as well as the 2006 National Book Critics Circle Fiction Award.[2]

In August 2008, Desai was a guest on Private Passions, the biographical music discussion programme hosted by Michael Berkeley on BBC Radio 3.[8] In May 2007 she was the featured author at the inaugural Asia House Festival of Cold Literature.

She was awarded a 2013 Berlin Prize Fellowship at the American Academy in Berlin.


  • Hullabaloo in the Guava Orchard. Faber and Faber. 1998. ISBN 0-571-19336-6.
  • The Inheritance of Loss. Hamish Hamilton Ltd. 2006. ISBN 0-241-14348-9.

See also


  1. "Kiran Desai". The Man Booker Prizes. The Booker Prize Foundation. Archived from the original on 14 October 2012. Retrieved 23 August 2013.
  2. Italie, Hillel (9 March 2007). "Desai's 'Inheritance' Wins Book Critics Circle Award". The Washington Post. Retrieved 23 August 2013.
  3. "Global Indian Women: Top 20 India-born & globally successful women from business and arts". The Economic Times. 5 January 2015. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  4. "Bold Type: Interview with Kiran Desai". Random House. Retrieved 14 June 2011.
  5. "Hullabaloo In The Guava Orchard". BookBrowse. Retrieved 14 June 2011.
  6. "Society of Authors — Prizes, Grants and Awards". Society of Authors. Archived from the original on 11 February 2007. Retrieved 14 June 2011.
  7. "The Betty Trask Prize and Awards". Christchurch City Libraries. Retrieved 14 June 2011.
  8. BBC – Radio 3 – Private Passions
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