I didn't attempt to publicly predict this year's Booker Prize shortlist because I only finished six of the thirteen novels. I was quite pleased, however, to see that three of the ones I enjoyed made the cut:
Room by Emma Donoghue
I was really pulling for Room, because it became my favorite novel ever. I absolutely adored it (my review) and gave it 6 stars out of 5. Good news, U.S. readers, it will be published here next Tuesday, September 13. Get in line.
The Long Song by Andrea Levy
I called The Long Song "both incredibly literary and incredibly accessible as a story, which is an all too rare combination" (my review) and gave it 4.5 stars.
In a Strange Room by Damon Galgut
In a Strange Room was the first of the longlisted novels I read, and I called it "a smart, unique, modern novel" (my review) and gave it 4 stars.
Of the three I've read, I'm happiest to see Room included, but I'm pleased with all three. The three shortlisted novels I haven't read (yet):
C by Tom McCarthy (out today in the U.S. Happy publication day, Tom McCarthy!)
The Finkler Question by Howard JacobsonI confess, I feared the committee would pick six of the seven I hadn't read, but I'm thrilled to know I already have half of the shortlist read. I'm most eager to read C and The Finkler Question, and I'll start one of the two later today.
What was left out?
Again, it's hard to say when I've only read six of them, but the glaring omission to me is Rose Tremain's Trespass. I gave it 5 stars and said it's "an accessible literary novel with immense depth" (my review.) Otherwise, I'm still looking forward to reading the rest of the longlist, especially The Slap, Skippy Dies, and The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet. Truthfully, with such an exciting longlist this year, there were bound to be some wonderful novels left out.
What are your thoughts on this year's shortlist?