Gregory David Roberts
Best known for his novel Shantaram, Australian author Gregory David Roberts has led a colourful life as a former heroin addict with criminal history. He was a convicted bank robber who had a successful attempt to escape prison, and served his sentence in prison again 10 years later. His first novel, Shantaram sparked a debate whether it was influenced by the author’s first-hand experiences or a merge of different elements of true events and fiction. However, it was praised by many internationally, including Singapore for its depiction of turbulent lives in Bombay, India.
Mountain Shadow is the long-awaited sequel in a planned quartet. Based on the author’s interview, the book is a conflation of real life experiences and fantasy. He aims to create a work of fiction that is page-turning yet infused with real experience so it will carry an authentic feel. With the dramatic overlap between the true events in Roberts’s life and made-up narrative, his novel possessed a grittiness of the urban landscape he was in and the vividness of his distress in prison.