Kazuo Ishiguro was born in 1954 in Nagasaki, Japan but has lived in England since the age of five. The Japanese history and culture are particularly present in his first two novels, but Ishiguro has been mostly praised for his outstanding portrayal of a mythical England in The Remains of the Day (1989), which does not bear much resemblance to the England in which he himself grew up. After spending his childhood in the affluent, middle-class town of Guildford, Ishiguro read philosophy and English at Kent University and did a Master’s degree in creative writing at the University of East Anglia, under the tutelage of Malcolm Bradbury and Angela Carter. He published his first short stories in 1981 and his first novel in 1982. The next year Ishiguro was selected by the literary magazine Granta as one of the 20 ‘Best of Young British Novelists’ along with Martin Amis, Pat Barker, Julian Barnes, William Boyd, Ian McEwan, Salman Rushdie, Graham Swift and others. Ten years later, in 1993, four judges — A. S. Byatt, Salman Rushdie, bookseller John Mitchinson and Granta editor Bill Buford — identified the most talented writers of the new generation and Ishiguro was again included in the list together with, among others, Louis de Bernières, Alan Hollinghurst, Hanif Kureishi, Caryl Phillips, Will Self and Jeanette Winterson.
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