Search - List of Books by Pauline Melville
Pauline Melville (Born 1948) is a Guyanese-born writer and actress. She now lives in London.
Total Books: 20
She appeared in films such as Mona Lisa (playing the part of Dawn), as Dora in The Long Good Friday, among others. She also appeared in television programmes: as Vyvyans's mother in the BBC Television comedy series The Young Ones; as Yvonne in Girls On Top, among others.
Her first book, Shape-Shifter (1990), a collection of short stories, won the Commonwealth Writers Prize (Overall Winner, Best First Book) and the Guardian Fiction Prize. The book consists of a number of short stories dealing with post-colonial life in the Caribbean, particularly in her native Guyana, as well as of some stories set in London. Many of her characters, most of them displaced people from former colonies struggling to come to terms with a new life in Britain, attempt to find an identity, to reconcile their past and to escape from the restlessness hinted at in the title. Salman Rushdie said it was "notably sharp, funny, original...part Caribbean magic, part London grime, written in a slippery, chameleon language that is a frequent delight".
Her first novel, The Ventriloquist's Tale (1997), won the Whitbread First Novel Award and was shortlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction. In it she explores the nature of fiction and storytelling and writes about the impact of European colonisers on Guyanese Amerindians through the story of a brother and sister.
Her most recent collection of stories is The Migration of Ghosts (1998), a book of complex layered tales of physical and emotional displacement.
Her mother was English, and her father Guyanese.