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Man Booker Prize 2007

mehastings

Active Member
The ‘Man Booker Dozen’ Announced
7 August 2007

The judges for the 2007 Man Booker Prize for Fiction announce their longlist of books in the running for the prize this year.

This longlist of 13 books, the ‘Man Booker Dozen’, was chosen from 110 entries; 92 were submitted for the prize and 18 were called in by the judges.

The longlist is:

* Darkmans by Nicola Barker (4th Estate)
* Self Help by Edward Docx (Picador)
* The Gift Of Rain by Tan Twan Eng (Myrmidon)
* The Gathering by Anne Enright (Jonathan Cape)
* The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid (Hamish Hamilton)
* The Welsh Girl by Peter Ho Davies (Sceptre)
* Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones (John Murray)
* Gifted by Nikita Lalwani (Viking)
* On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan (Jonathan Cape)
* What Was Lost by Catherine O’Flynn (Tindal Street)
* Consolation by Michael Redhill (William Heinemann)
* Animal’s People by Indra Sinha (Simon & Schuster)
* Winnie & Wolf by A.N.Wilson (Hutchinson)

Chair of judges, Howard Davies, comments:

“This year’s longlist is very diverse, with four first time novelists as well as some more familiar names. All the books chosen are well-crafted and will appeal to a wide readership.”

The Shortlist will be announced September 6.

Anyone have any favorites? The Booker site has readers betting on McEwan with 3/1 odds, but I have to wonder if that is simply because he is better known than most of these authors.
 

Stewart

Active Member
I'm trying to read them all this year and will be posting reviews on my blog. Shade's doing the same on his blog although he's in the enviable position of having read five prior to the announcement.

I'm currently reading Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones, which recently won the Commonwealth Writers Prize. I've also got The Welsh Girl by Peter Ho Davies and Animal's People by Indra Sinha.
 

Shade

New Member
Yes mehastings, in my view the McEwan has the shortest odds simply because he's best known. I don't know anyone who's read On Chesil Beach who really thinks it should win, or that it's even near his best. (Then again, he won before for Amsterdam, also widely agreed to be a poor offering.)

Yes I've read five (now six) of the longlisted titles. My definite favourites are Peter Ho Davies's The Welsh Girl and Lloyd Jones's Mister Pip. The latter in particular could be a very big seller if it wins, along the lines of Life of Pi. It has the same accessible, likeable and slightly magical quality. I did slightly prefer The Welsh Girl though.

I've also read Docx's Self Help, Lalwani's Gifted and Hamid's The Reluctant Fundamentalist.

You can read my reviews of them (and the others as I read them) on my blog here. (See the sidebar for Booker longlist links.)
 

Thursday_Next

New Member
McEwan

Why is McEwan always on the booker longlist? Sure, he's usually a good writer, but all his books are not that good (Amsterdam for one).

However, it was a surprise to see all these new names on the list this year. Unfortunately I haven't read any as yet.
 

Stewart

Active Member
Why is McEwan always on the booker longlist? Sure, he's usually a good writer, but all his books are not that good (Amsterdam for one).

Aw, I liked Amsterdam. Admittedly, it was a light read compared to what he's capable of. Perhaps he's been playing Booker Monopoly and has once again played his 'Go Straight To The Longlist' card.

However, it was a surprise to see all these new names on the list this year. Unfortunately I haven't read any as yet.
It's certainly good to see new names and of course new books that would otherwise have passed you by. I'm onto my second read now since the announcement, in Peter Ho Davies's The Welsh Girl. So far in, it's clear to see why he's on the list. The writing simply sparkles and is very assured for what is a debut novel.

The other one, which I finished yesterday, was Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones. That link is my review of it.
 

mehastings

Active Member
I've enjoyed the McEwan books that I've read (haven't read the debated Amsterdam though), but I don't think that he is amazing enough to hit the Booker list annually. I've been meaning to get On Chesil Beach for some time, but I've been too busy trying to clear some of the crap I have sitting on my shelves. I doubt I'll get to it before the Booker itself is announced.

Stewart & Shade, I enjoyed your reviews of Mister Pip, and am intrigued enough to try tracking it down. Perhaps I'll try ordering it when I return my way overdue audiobooks to the library. Having read Great Expectations years ago (and actually enjoying it), I'm interested in how it is used here.
 

acton

New Member
Thank you, mehastings, for the information:)
It's interesting, about the McEwan comments; I've read just two--Saturday, which I thought was good, and Amsterdam, which I thought was awful. (If I had not been literally stranded with this book, I would have put it down). Obviously, I haven't read the right ones. If he's listed every year, I'll have to do some sleuthing to know which ones are worth the time...
 

Shade

New Member
Of the eight I've read so far, I would rank The Welsh Girl, Mister Pip and Indra Sinha's Animal's People (a real surprise, this last) as strong contenders for the shortlist. Catherine O'Flynn's What Was Lost and Nikita Lalwani's Gifted were nothing special in the end and shouldn't make it any further. That leaves Edward Docx's Self Help, Ian McEwan's On Chesil Beach and Mohsin Hamid's The Reluctant Fundamentalist which are middle-ranking in my view and could make the cut or not, depending on what the others are like.
 

Stewart

Active Member
The Welsh Girl review. Having only read two of the thirteen books thus far, I want this one to win the Booker Prize. It's got everything: prose, memorable characters, depth, humour, pathos, drama, a story. And sheep. Let's not forget the sheep.
 

abecedarian

Well-Known Member
The Welsh Girl review. Having only read two of the thirteen books thus far, I want this one to win the Booker Prize. It's got everything: prose, memorable characters, depth, humour, pathos, drama, a story. And sheep. Let's not forget the sheep.


I thought this sounded promising. Glad you liked it. With 23 holdings in the state, I should stand a good chance of getting a copy from the library.
 

Maizara

New Member
Wow, Mister Pip has really spurred my interest. I'm also looking forward to reading Animal's People and The Welsh Girl. Thanks Stewart and Shade. :)

Since I can't get hold of Mister Pip yet, I thought of suggesting it for Nov's BOTM. How about it?
 

Shade

New Member
I've read 12 of the 13 on the longlist now (reviews in the link in my sig). My top three* hasn't changed, but Tan Twan Eng's The Gift of Rain is very good, and A.N. Wilson's Winnie and Wolf, and Catherine O'Flynn's What Was Lost aren't.


* The Welsh Girl, Mister Pip, Animal's People
 

abecedarian

Well-Known Member
Whenever someone asks me why I spend so much time on online book forums, I point to books such as The Welsh Girl . I might have eventually discovered this gem, but most likely I would have missed it all together. That would have been unfortunate. Karsten, Captain Rotheram, and Esther won't leave me alone. Even though I finished their story two days ago. I find myself reliving parts of their lives and wondering how they'd handle different situations in mine. I know I'll eventually move away from them, but for now, I'm enjoying their company. I know I won't read through all the Man Booker Prize candidates, but this one is already a winner in my eyes. I'm just waiting for my husband to ask me for something to read!

Thanks for posting your reviews!
 
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