I have a confession to make: I’d only read two of the Man Booker Prize longlist when the shortlist was announced. Of the two (Eileen and My Name is Lucy Barton), I strongly preferred Eileen – a confidently written character study of an extremely unlikable young woman. Now that it’s been shortlisted, I’m very interested to see how it fares against the other shortlisted titles. They are:
After his father’s death a young black man seeks to reinstate slavery in the inconsequential town of Dickens, California. It’s a satirical look at race relations in the US.
Hot Milk by Deborah Levy (available in book)
Levy’s previous novel Swimming Home was awash in beautiful language. I’m very much looking forward to Hot Milk, the story of a claustrophobic mother-daughter relationship set in Spain.
His Bloody Project by Graeme Mcrae Burnett (available in ebook)
A historical literary thriller from a small publishing house? Yes, please. Already a winner for beating out some huge names to land a spot on the shortlist, Burnett’s His Bloody Project promises to keep you enthralled to the last page.
It’s wonderful that both Canadian longlisters made the shortlist. What does manhood look like at the different stages of life? Manhood is the central preoccupation of this collection of interconnected short stories.
This is Thien’s year. Her novel Do Not Say We Have Nothing has also been longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. It’s a sprawling family saga set in present-day Vancouver and China before, during, and after the Tiananmen Square protests.
Get your holds in now! The winner will be announced on October 25.