Shiva Naipaul was born in Woodbrook, Port of Spain, Trinidad in 1945. He was the younger brother of V S Naipaul. After school in Trinidad, he followed his brother to Oxford where he studied politics and psychology and then Chinese. He took up writing immediately after Oxford and had success with his first novel, Fireflies. He was a keen traveller and wrote about his travels in North of South: An African Journey. He also wrote about the Jonestown Massacre in Black and White (US: Journey to Nowhere: A New World Tragedy). He died of a heart attack in 1985. He has been compared, usually unfavourably, to his brother.