A Fine Balance, Rohinton Mistry’s stunning internationally acclaimed bestseller, is set in mid-1970s India. It tells the story of four unlikely people whose lives come together during a time of political turmoil soon after the government declares a “State of Internal Emergency.” Through days of bleakness and hope, their circumstances – and their fates – become inextricably linked in ways no one could have foreseen. Mistry’s prose is alive with enduring images and a cast of unforgettable characters. Written with compassion, humour, and insight, A Fine Balance is a vivid, richly textured, and powerful novel written by one of the most gifted writers of our time.
Rohinton Mistry is the author of three novels, all of which have been shortlisted for the Booker Prize, and a collection of short stories, Tales from Firozsha Baag.
His first novel, Such a Long Journey, won the Governor General's Award, the Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best Book, and the SmithBooks/Books in Canada First Novel Award. It was made into an acclaimed feature film in 1998.
A Fine Balance was winner of the Giller Prize, the Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best Book, the Los Angeles Times Fiction Prize, the Royal Society of Literature's Winifred Holtby Award, and Denmark's ALOA Prize. It was shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, the Irish Times International Fiction Prize, and the Prix Femina. In 2002, A Fine Balance was selected for Oprah’s Book Club.
Family Matters won the Kiriyama Pacific Rim Book Prize for Fiction and the Canadian Authors Association Fiction Award. It was shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize.
Born in Bombay, Rohinton Mistry has lived in Canada since 1975. He was awarded the Trudeau Fellows Prize in 2004, and a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2005. Elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2009, he was a finalist for the 2011 Man Booker International Prize, and winner of the 2012 Neustadt International Prize for Literature. In translation, his work has been published in more than thirty languages.
“A masterpiece of illumination and grace. Like all great fiction, it transforms our understanding of life.”
–The Guardian (U.K.)
“This novel has the courage to remember and to reaffirm who we are, one by one; it continues, in the tradition of the great novels, to celebrate the luminous and unquenchable human spirit.”
–Globe and Mail
“Few have caught the real sorrow and inexplicable strength of India, the unaccountable crookedness and sweetness, as well as Mistry.”
“A towering masterpiece by a writer of genius.…”
–The Independent (U.K.)
“An astonishing novel…full of wisdom and laughter and the touches of the unexpectedly familiar through which literature illuminates life.”
–Wall Street Journal
“A work of stature…in scope, insight, and above all compassion for human beings.”
“Those who continue to harp on the inevitable decline of the novel ought to…consider Rohinton Mistry.”
–New York Times Book Review of Books
“The story unfolds with the grace and beauty of a butterfly’s wing…extraordinary.”
–The Times (U.K.)
“Mistry has demonstrated once again the enduring power of fiction to make sense of it all simply by telling a story…Read it.”
“Every word of it seems like a fleck of brilliant light on a dancing ocean.…A major achievement.”
–Scotland on Sunday
“A compelling book that manages the rare feat of being both entertaining and compassionate.”
“Compulsively readable; also funny, intensely moving and, like Bombay, pullulating with humanity.”
–The Independent (U.K.)
“Impossible to put down.”
–The Sydney Morning Herald, Australia