Monday, August 14, 2006

I've got nothing much to say

about the Booker Prize longlist:

Carey, Peter Theft: A Love Story

Desai, Kiran The Inheritance of Loss

Edric, Robert Gathering the Water

Gordimer, Nadine Get a Life

Grenville, Kate The Secret River

Hyland, M.J. Carry Me Down

Jacobson, Howard Kalooki Nights

Lasdun, James Seven Lies

Lawson, Mary The Other Side of the Bridge

McGregor, Jon So Many Ways to Begin

Matar, Hisham In the Country of Men

Messud, Claire The Emperor's Children

Mitchell, David Black Swan Green

Murr, Naeem The Perfect Man

O'Hagan, Andrew Be Near Me

Robertson, James The Testament of Gideon Mack

St Aubyn, Edward Mother's Milk

Unsworth, Barry The Ruby in her Navel

Waters, Sarah The Night Watch

In fact it seems to be full of books I haven't really heard of at all! But this is probably a good thing, it's boring when it's all people who are famous already.

I have only read two of the books on the list, Lasdun and Mitchell (out of those two it would be easy for me to pick Lasdun, I think he is a great genius and not as famous as he should be); I've read other novels by Peter Carey, Nadine Gordimer, Claire Messud, Andrew O'Hagan, Barry Unsworth and Sarah Waters, though not these ones, and can also say that I am eager to read Messud, O'Hagan and Waters but not so much the others (more because of the nature of my tastes, though, than because of any beliefs I might hold about their quality). Wouldn't mind reading Kiran Desai. Have been meaning to read St Aubyn but stalled on one of his previous books.

Last year I was having a fantasy about blogging the Booker longlist between its announcement and the actual award-giving, but given how incredibly busy I am right now with reading and writing-type stuff it's just as well I didn't set anything like that up. However, for next year it seems like it might be a good idea....


  1. When I saw it, I thought "well the popular choice would be the Mitchell or the Waters, as I haven't heard of many of the others".
    Time will tell!
    Malcolm is currently reading last year's winner, Banville's The Sea, which he is enjoying a lot. Hasn't stopped him buying three Bernard Cornwells for his upcoming holiday, though!

  2. Well the Messud hasn't been released yet (two more weeks) but the buzz is that it's great...