Who is going to be on the Man Booker Longlist 2009?

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The longlist for the Booker Prize is going to be annouced next week.

Here are my predictions for books which will make the list:


The Children’s Book – A. S. Byatt


Wolf Hall – Hilary Mantel


Kieron Smith, Boy – James Kelman


The Island at the End of the World – Sam Taylor


The Wilderness – Samantha Harvey


Brooklyn – Colm Toibin


Taste of Sorrow – Jude Morgan


Blackmoor – Edward Hogan


The Winter Vault – Anne Michaels

 

I really hope that The Wilderness wins the Booker Prize this year, but I have a feeling that The Children’s Book will win.

In many ways I hope that my predictions don’t come true. I’m really hoping that I discover some great new books via the list this year, and it isn’t just packed with previous winners.

Who do you think will win the Booker Prize 2009?

Who else do you think will make the longlist?

The longlist will be announced on 28th July 2009. Are you planning to read the Booker list this year?


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44 Comments

  1. Stewart says:

    James Kelman’s Kierson Smith, Boy isn’t eligible for this year’s Booker. It came out during last year’s eligibility period.

    I’ll wait to see the list before I decide if I’m going to read it all again. Last year was a nightmare, only managing to find the end of four of them. The year before was an enjoyable experience though. This is looking like a good year.

    1. Jackie says:

      I thought that might happen! I have to admit to not researching all the books – the rules for the Booker prize are quite complicated and so I wasn’t sure all the books were eligible. I’m surprised it wasn’t on last year’s list then.

      The Booker works in mysterious ways!

      1. Stewart says:

        I’m surprised it wasn’t on last year’s list then.

        Last year’s lot lacked an academic edge and picked mostly sludge.

        1. Jackie says:

          I agree – I wasn’t a fan of last year’s list. I hope there are some gems this year.

  2. Claire says:

    That’s disappointing about Kieron Smith, Boy; I’m still intending to read it. The eligibility rules are definitely confusing.

    I’ve read two from your list but, like you, I am hoping it isn’t predictable and lists a few welcome surprises. I would also love to see The Wilderness win.

    I am definitely intending to read the longlist but I may find some of them a struggle to a) find (I’ll be borrowing most of them from the library and The Children’s Book alone has a long waiting list) and b) finish!

    I’m looking forward to the list being announced and reading your thoughts next week!

    1. Claire says:

      P.S. Reading up on The Island at the Edge of the World I really want to read it, longlist or not. I had The Republic of Trees by Sam Taylor on my wish-list but I’d forgotten all about it or him. His books definitely appeal to me.

    2. Jackie says:

      I was surprised to find that Wolf Hall had the longest waiting list at my local library, so I decided to buy it – wish I hadn’t now – it was terrible!!

      I love the sound of The Island at the Edge of the World – I started reading it in a bookshop at the weekend. It is amazing. It took enormous will power not to buy it! It is on order at my local library, so hopefully I’ll get a copy soon. I’ll read it whether it makes the list or not.

    3. Stewart says:

      The eligibility rules are definitely confusing.

      They’re not really.

      The fundamentals:

      Book must be wriiten by a writer with Commonwealth or Irish nationality.
      Book must have been first published in the UK between Oct-08 and Sep-09.
      Books are submitted by their publishers for consideration.

      The restrictions:
      Two books per imprint, although they can specify a list of other titles that may interest the judges.

      The byes
      If an author has been shortlisted in the last five years, they are automatically considered, provided they meet the fundamentals.
      Judges can, off the lists provided by publishers, call in a limited number of titles (8-12) for consideration.
      Judges can call in certain titles not mentioned, should they think there’s merit in doing so.

      And, er, that’s it. Other than small considerations, such as the publishers’ putting up £5k to promote the book should it make the cut.

      1. Claire says:

        Thanks for explaining them, Stewart. Far easier now for little ol’ me to understand.

  3. Frances says:

    I too hope for some surprises as the release of the list always prompts me into some unexpected reads. How about Stone’s Fall and Cutting for Stone? Great predictions!

    1. Jackie says:

      I thiink Abraham Verghese is American, so doesn’t qualify for the Booker. Not 100% sure about that though.

      I did think about putting Stone’s Fall on the list, but for some reason – women’s intuition?! I didn’t. I haven’t read it yet, but I really want to. I’d love an excuse to read it. I hope it makes the list.

      1. Jackie says:

        Just discovered he was born of Indian parents, who were teachers in Ethiopia, but lives in the US now – so I guess he does qualify for the Booker prize.

      2. Frances says:

        Hoping the same about Stone’s Fall.

  4. JoAnn says:

    The only one I’ve read is Brooklyn, and I loved it. Can’t wait to see the list!

    1. Jackie says:

      I’m planning to read Brooklyn this weekend. I am really looking forward to it.

  5. Haven’t read any of them! Guess I just don’t tend to read that many “new” books. Oh well…

    1. Jackie says:

      I haven’t read most of them yet either – I’m sure I will have done soon though. I wouldn’t worry about it – older books are probably better!

  6. Sandra says:

    I always try to read the shortlist and any from the longlist that appeal. I enjoyed The Secret Scripture and The White Tiger; The Clothes on Their Backs was a decent read, but The Northern Clemency was really dull for me. I have Byatt’s book on reserve at the library, it’s a long waiting list; The Wilderness is on my desk waiting for me, and Brooklyn is on my tbr list. There are a couple of titles here I hadn’t heard about yet so thank you for that. I will look into them.

    1. Jackie says:

      I didn’t love any of the books from last year’s list – although I haven’t read Secret Scripture yet. I hope you enjoy the Wilderness as much as I did.

  7. Sandy says:

    Sorry I didn’t reply earlier. I am in Internet hell. Sigh. anyway, you are the Booker expert…no other blogger I know has quite as much experience. So it will be fun to see where it all lands. I haven’t read Wilderness yet, but based on your review, I’m rooting for it!

    1. Jackie says:

      Sorry to hear that you are having Internet problems – I hope you get it sorted soon. Let’s hope Wilderness makes it on to the list next week.

  8. Violet says:

    I have absolutely no idea. In fact I have heard of so many of these books from your blog. You are doing a good job of educating award-illiterate people like me :)

    May the best one win.

    1. Jackie says:

      May the best one win.

      I really hope it does!

  9. Simon S says:

    Oh I am going to do something on this the day before its announced! I am inclined to say that The Childrens Book will win (will read this over the weekend in my sick bed) but in all honesty I want Burnt Shadows on there and that to win! Though The Wilderness winning would be great too, I just loved Burnt Shadows so much! Time will tell!

    1. Jackie says:

      I wasn’t a big fan of Burnt Shadows. I will be interested to see if it makes the list and how my list compares to yours.

  10. Nicole says:

    Oh boy! The only one of these I have even heard of is Brooklyn and the A.S. Byatt and only because I think that she won something else this year. Where have I been? Needless to say I have zero thoughts on who the winner will be.

    1. Jackie says:

      I wouldn’t worry about it – I think these books have a much higher profile here in the UK than they do elsewhere in the world. At least you can say that you’ve heard of all these books now!

  11. Beth F says:

    I’m just a spectator! But I’ll be watching this space.

    1. Jackie says:

      I’ll do my best to keep you informed!

  12. Trish says:

    Funny–I was just thinking about this yestserday and wondering when the longist would be announced. I think you’re right about The Children’s Book, but I haven’t read any of these and haven’t heard of most!

    1. Jackie says:

      I keep thinking of more books which could be on the list. Today I discovered One Morning Like a Bird by one of my favourite authors – Andrew Miller is eligible.

      1. Stewart says:

        One Morning Like A Bird is not eligible. It came out around August/September last year, which excludes it from this year’s Booker, where eligibility begins from October 1st.

        1. Jackie says:

          That’s a shame – I’m still looking forward to reading it though.

  13. Samantha says:

    I loved Brooklyn but I have a sneaking suspicion it won’t be on the shortlist – maybe the longlist – time will tell. Not that I don’t think it deserves a place but the shortlist tends to have 2 or 3 very well known books and 2 or 3 unknowns and I think Mantel’s and Byatt’s books will be there before Toibin’s (but I maybe just being pessimistic!)

    1. Jackie says:

      I’m going to read Brooklyn over the weekend, so don’t know if it deserves a place on the list yet. If one of the well known books has to go I hope it is Wolf Hall – see my review!

      1. Samantha says:

        I did and I have to say that I am steering well clear of it! I had previously picked it up in the bookshop and read a few pages and it didn’t immediately grab me either so I don’t think it will be gracing my tbr pile any time soon ;-)

  14. Mark says:

    Just finished reading Red Dog, Red Dog and have a feeling ti could be a suprise contender for this year’s Booker.

    1. Jackie says:

      I hadn’t heard of that one – I’ve just looked it up and it does sound good – I might read it whether it gets nominated or not – thanks for drawing it to my attention!

    2. Claire says:

      Ditto, sounds great.

      I am very excited about the nominations! I picked up The Island at the Edge of the World from the library.

      1. Jackie says:

        My library hasn’t got any copies in yet. My name is top of the list for it though! I look forward to hearing what you think of it.

  15. Mark says:

    Another Canadian author is Joseph Boyden, author of Through Black Spruce – his second novel – that I have heard is also a possibility and is GOOD.

    Though I guess we’ll find out very soon!

  16. Sam Taylor says:

    Hi Jackie,

    Thanks for picking my third novel The Island at the End of the World as one of your predictions for the Booker longlist – shame you weren’t right! You don’t have to wait for it to come up at your local library though. Just email me your postal address and I’ll send you a signed copy. Then you can tell all your readers how great you thought it was…

    Sam

    1. Jackie says:

      Thank you so much for the offer!

      I’ve sent an email to you and look forward to reading your book.

      Sorry that you didn’t make the Booker list – I’m sure you’ll book will be better than most (all?) the ones on the list!

      I’m off to cancel my library reservation!!!!

    2. Claire says:

      I am reading your book at moment, after Jackie thankfully brought it to my attention, and all I can say is that it deserves to be on the list! I am loving it.

      Thanks, Jackie.

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