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The 2011 Orange Prize Shortlist

The Orange Prize shortlist has just been announced as:

I predicted four out of the six correctly, but I was surprised that A Visit from the Goon Squad didn’t make the list – especially since it has been winning every prize it has been eligible for recently.

Who will win the Orange Prize?

I have no idea! I would guess that Great House or The Memory of Love has the greatest chance of winning, but as Room has been shortlisted I think it will still be in with a chance. I also wouldn’t be surprised if The Tiger’s Wife took the title – in fact I don’t think the field has been this wide openĀ for a while.

What do you think of the shortlist?

Who do you think will win?

40 replies on “The 2011 Orange Prize Shortlist”

“Annabel” is beautifully written although I felt the ending lacked power. “Great House” has surprised me, I started it thinking I wouldn’t like it at all & got gripped. Haven’t read “Memory of Love” yet but it’s next on the list.
I still think “Room” will win, though it didn’t appeal to me.

Alison, I agree about Annabel lacking power. I’m not surprised that it made the shortlist, but I would be shocked if it won.

I think you’ll love Memory of Love. Enjoy :-)

Well, I am shocked that Room made it! Finally getting some love, which is good to see. Funny, even though I haven’t read the rest of them, I’ve read alot of reviews and there are considerable number of people that had problems with them. I’ll be anxious to see how it works out.

Sandy, Yes. The list is very literary and so most are hard to read. I haven’t enjoyed reading them, but can see their quality. I think these books all divide opinion – as all the best ones do :-)

That’s a pretty good prediction Jackie! I’m reading Great House at the moment which I’m enjoying and would like to read a couple more before the prize announcement. But you know how slow I am at reading prize books!

I didn’t realize Karen Russell was in the 20 Under 40 list too, and she didn’t make it, though Tea Obreht did. I think it’s a pretty interesting shortlist. I’m somewhat intrigued by Annabel and the Tiger’s Wife, have intended to read The Great House since it came out, and have read and liked Room.

mee, I think you will love Great House and Memory of Love, but I think you might have issues with Annabel – it will be interesting to see if my predictions are correct :-) Enjoy your Oranges :-)

I figured either Goon Squad or Great House would make it, but I was pulling for Goon Squad. Overall, I think it’s a pretty balanced and diverse list. I’m still looking forward to reading the rest of the longlist too, but I’m thrilled to see Room make it. I’ll be re-reading Room and Great House because I read both last year. I’m curious to see if my reactions change on the second read.

Carrie, I thought they’d both make it, but overall I think it is a very strong list. I think they’ve done a good job of narrowing it down (all the mistakes were made at the longlisting stage ;-) ) Enjoy your re-reads :-)

First of all, congrats on picking four of the six in your predictions! =) I was three for three, which is a personal best! =) Like you, I was surprised to see Egan’s book missing from the short list.

I have Room and The Great House in my possession but still unread. Will be getting to those quickly!

Happy Orange Reading!
Jill =)

Jill, Thank you and congratulations on getting a personal best. :-) I’m impressed that you’ve managed to avoid reading Room since it seems to have been everywhere, but you are in for a treat! Enjoy all your Oranges!

Great job making your predictions! I haven’t read many on the list, but I’m very impressed that so many are from debut novelists. I was also really surprised that Great House made it over Goon Squad, since I’ve heard so many negatives about Great House. Either way, I’ll definitely be adding some of these titles to my list!

Jenna, I think it is unusual for there to be so many debuts, but I love debuts so am very happy about that. I think most of these books will divide opinion, but I hope that you enjoy reading the shortlist. Happy reading!

I am gunning for Annabel to win, I was astounded by it. I am happy both Room and Great house are on the list, though I wouldnt have put them on my own – Room has had sooo much publicity now (which it is fair to say it deserves as its very good, I love it, am just slightly fed up with it being everywhere now – bah humbug hahaha) and I don’t think, this is where I put my Green Carantion Prize judging hat on, I could read and re-read Great House again and again though I loved it the first time round. I also though Swamplandia! had a slight edge over The Tigers Wife, it just shows how subjective reading and judging is.

Simon, I think your comments on Great House just show what a fantastic book it is. I think the same is probably true of Memory of Love too and so that is why I think they are much more likely to win than a book like Annabel. Anyone could win though and I look forward to seeing which book the judges pick in the end.

to be honest… i am surprised that “room” is on there but have the feeling it might walk away with the price. it had a lot of publicity, although i personally think it cashed in on tragic events

Edie, I was a little surprised that Room made it as it seems to be loved by people who dislike the rest of the list, but as I’m one of the people who loved it I am pleased it did sneak through to the shortlist. I don’t think it cashed in on tragic events- it raised some very interesting questions about what we value in society and didn’t actually detail the horrific events.

Good call guessing four of the six! Since I haven’t read any of these I can’t really give an opinion – other than the same kind I give when picking who I think will win professional sports games (based on uniform colors). In which case I would say The Memory of Love because I like the cover. :)

Alyce, LOL! I actually think they all have very good covers. I wonder if the publishers spent extra time designing them because they thought they were extra special?

I’m impressed Jackie! Soon you will be invited to the Orange Prize Panel of judges! :)

Haven’t read any of them yet, but I have ROOM to read and Tiger’s wife looks good! Thanks for the news!

JoV, I don’t think the Orange judges will ever have me – but I can always dream….

I’m sure you’ll enjoy Room & I look forward to reading your thoughts on it.

I got 4 right too! I haven’t read enough of these books or of the other longlisted titles to form a proper opinion, but it looks like a well balanced list and I have heard praise for all six books, so I’m reasonably happy.

FluerFisher, Congratulations on getting four right! Such a shame that The Birth of Love didn’t make it :-( Other than that I am very pleased with the list – they made some good choices.

Jenners, I’m glad it isn’t just me that thinks so. Lots of people seem surprised it didn’t make it and I think they made a mistake in not including it.

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