Nobel prize-winning author V.S. Naipaul dies

VS Naipaul

VS Naipaul

He passed Saturday at age 85 at his London home, according to family members.

She described her husband as a giant in all that he had achieved and said he had lived a life "full of wonderful creativity and endeavour".

Born in Trinidad, the son of an Indian civil servant, he studied English literature at Oxford University before basing his life in England. His most famous works include A House for Mr. Biswas, An Area of Darkness, India: A Wounded Civilization, and A Bend in the River.

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Mr Naipaul notoriously fell out with author Paul Theroux, whom he had mentored, with the spat causing a rift for years.

Paying tribute to his friend, who he said had been in poor health, Theroux said: "He also never wrote falsely. Only then would he consent to be questioned". From there he traveled to the United Kingdom and entered the University of Oxford in 1950 after winning a government scholarship.

In 1990 he was knighted and he won numerous major prizes throughout his career, namely the Booker in 1971, which was said to have been awarded to "the best writer, but not the best book".

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President Ram Nath Kovind also expressed his condolences through Twitter, saying he was saddened to learn about the passing away of Naipaul, "whose books are a penetrative exploration of faith, colonialism and the human condition, in his home in the Caribbean and beyond".

Born in Trinidad in 1932, Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul won a scholarship to read English at Oxford University and published his first novel, The Mystic Masseur, in 1957.

In awarding him the $1 million Nobel Prize in Literature in 2001, the Swedish Academy praised Naipaul for combining genres into his own style that compels readers "to see the presence of suppressed histories".

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The outspoken writer was known for his many harsh criticisms, including that of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair - who he described as a "pirate" - as well as literary stalwarts such as Charles Dickens and EM Forster.

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