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Q: Biographical sketches of Booker Prize Winners. ( Answered,   0 Comments )
Subject: Biographical sketches of Booker Prize Winners.
Category: Arts and Entertainment
Asked by: jenkinsk-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 17 Feb 2005 07:54 PST
Expires: 19 Mar 2005 07:54 PST
Question ID: 475993
I need a biographical sketch of DBC Pierre, author of Vernon God Little.

Request for Question Clarification by feilong-ga on 17 Feb 2005 09:14 PST
Hi Jenkinski,

Did you make an initial search regarding this matter? Could you tell
me what you have found so far? I'm asking to make sure the info that I
or, in case I failed to find one, another researcher will provide will
not be the same as to what you have already found.

Your subject says "Biographical sketches..." but your question says "a
biographical sketch". How many refences do you need?


Clarification of Question by jenkinsk-ga on 17 Feb 2005 11:09 PST
I know he was Enlish born in Australia, lived in Mexico from ages
7-23, was a rebellious teen and now lives in Ireland. I am "reviewing"
Vernon God Little, the book for which he won the Booker Prize for my
book club. We like to tell a little about the author before the
discussion begins. Is he married now? Any children? How old is he? 
What was his father's occupation that brought him to Australia and
Subject: Re: Biographical sketches of Booker Prize Winners.
Answered By: markj-ga on 17 Feb 2005 16:50 PST
jenkinsk --

I was surprised and initially frustrated to find that, while online
sources abound with interviews with DBC Pierre (born Peter Finlay) and
with reviews of his book, biographical information beyond that which
you have found already is sketchy.

As for his birthdate, the consensus is that he was born in June 1961
in Reynalla, Australia (although a few sites say it was 1962).  Here
is the reference from the official website of the Booker Prize, which
you can reasonably consider to be authoritative:

"DBC Pierre was born in June 1961 in Australia, brought up in Mexico,
and has lived on both sides of the border. He has worked as a designer
and is internationally published as a cartoonist."
Booker Prize: DBC Pierre

As for his family, after much looking I found some information about
his father, who is variously described as Australian or English. 
Based on the number and quality of the various sources, I think that
he is likely to have been of English extraction, but resident in
Australia long enough so that he could properly also be described as

Here is an example of each version, which, as noted above, are
different, but not necessarily inconsistent:

"Book tours have taken [Pierre] to Australia, where he was born to an
Australian father and and English mother .  .  .   ."
The Independent: Dirty but debt-free: the prize-winning author who
pledged to set right his past (6/23/04)

"Born in Australia to English parents, he was brought up in Mexico,
where his father moved the family to pursue his career as a
Guardian Unlimited: Booker Prize 2003: "How did I get here?",13819,1063774,00.html

As for Pierre's father's career, he was a scientist, whose activities
have been variously described as follows:

"For the most part, Pierre's itinerant life was down to his father,
whose job as a geneticist specialising in crop science took the family
around the globe. They settled for a time in Mexico City, where, while
his father experimented in 'pre-GM cross-breeding funded by the UN and
the Rockefeller Foundation' . . . .  "
The Observer (1/19/03),13819,1044044,00.html 

"His father, Keith Finlay, was a West Australian, a man, his son says,
of great artistic talent who turned to science as a breadwinner. Keith
was teaching at an agricultural institute just outside Adelaide when
Pierre/Peter came along in 1962. 'But by the time I was 18 months, he
was lecturing in the States, and then we moved permanently to

Sydney Morning Herald: Pierre Pressures (9/19/03)

Pierre's father died of a brain tumor when Pierre was 19 years: Author Interviews: DBC Pierre

Finally, there is the question of DBC Pierre's marital status.  Again,
this was not easily to track down, but he seems to be in a
longstanding relationship with a woman named "Jennie," whom he refers
to as his "partner."  I have found no references to any children. 
Here is a good source of recent information about Jennie, along with a
sample quote:

?'She (Jennie) has been an incredible support for me through these
last few years and through the writing of Vernon, and so I am pleased
to be able to repay it now and give her the space to study - this is a
perfect spot to stay focussed on work,' said Peter. "

Leitrim (Ireland) Observer: "Award-winning author finds a place to call 'home'," by
Neil Halligan

I think that this information fully covers the areas that you
described in your clarification.  The websites I have linked for you
above should be especially good sources for a lot more detail about
DBC Pierre, if you or your book club is interested.

Search Strategy:

The challenges I encountered with this project were to find the best
sources of information among the many, many online references to
Pierre engendered by his Booker Prize notoriety and then to find and
confirm the very sparse references to his personal life and immediate
family.  Here are a few representative examples of the many searches I

"dbc pierre" father OR dad"

"dbc pierre" girlfriend OR partner

"dbc pierre" born

Based on your clarification, I am confident that this is the
information you are looking for.  If anything is unclear or
incomplete, please ask for clarification before rating the answer.

There are no comments at this time.

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