Booker shortlist

Renowned literary expert Howard Davies and his panel of Booker judges have revealed the short list for this year’s Booker prize.  The shortlist comprises

  • Darkmans by Nicola Barker (Fourth Estate)
  • The Gathering by Anne Enright (Jonathan Cape)
  • The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid (Hamish Hamilton)
  • Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones (John Murray)
  • On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan (Jonathan Cape)
  • Animal’s People by Indra Sinha (Simon & Schuster)

    I’ve only read the McEwan (his worst since Amsterdam) and can’t muster any enthusiasm for the prize this year when Day by AL Kennedy didn’t even make the longlist.

    The McEwan is about a couple in the sixties who get together and have their first sexual experience on their wedding night.  The dramatic climax is an undramatic climax, and I was left feeling that McEwan was using the novel as a metaphor for his relationship with his long term readers (who prefer his earlier darker (and wittier) books). 

  • About loveandgarbage

    I watch the telly and read when not doing law stuff and plugging my decade and a half old unwatched Edinburgh fringe show.
    This entry was posted in books, man booker prize, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

    4 Responses to Booker shortlist

    1. ramtops says:

      I have, so far. read Atonement, Chesil Beach, Saturday and Enduring Love.
      They have taken me ages to get into, and have mostly left me wondering what all the fuss was about, although Atonement did pick up very well in the second half.
      I expect I’m a Philistine.

      • I quite like Enduring Love, although feel that it would have benefited if the protagonist’s stalker had been in his head, and this was a manifestation of a breakdown rather than genuine. Atonement and Saturday are to my mind over-rated examples of McEwan showing how much research he’d done. Saturday in particular irritates in this respect. On Chesil Beach has so little to it, the characters don’t feel real (especially the break-up as a result of the failed wedding night), and was hugely disappointing. I should say that I think Amsterdam is awful, the worst book to win the Booker that I’ve read.

        • ramtops says:

          Haven’t read Amsterdam. Saturday irritated me beyond belief – it just struck me as showing off all the time.
          The beginning of Enduring Love was excellent, and I actually had a nightmare about the balloon incident. But by and large I find his characters utterly unlikeable.

    2. shaz_rte says:

      I think this is the first year where I haven’t read any of the books on the shortlist — and have no inclination to do so. I gave up on McEwan several books ago. While I was boxing up some books at the weekend I came across my copies of the short stories and of the The Cement Garden. I don’t often re-read books (far too many to read for the first time!) but I think I’ll make an exception for these.

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