IAN McEWAN SURVIVES BOOKER CULL
McEwan is once again in the running for a second Booker victory.
Ian McEwan is in the running to be only the third author to win the Man Booker prize for a second time, having secured a place on the shortlist this afternoon with On Chesil Beach.
However, his inclusion may raise some eyebrows among the literary community due to the slightness of his book which, at less than 200 pages, is felt by many to be a novella rather than a novel.
McEwan is joined on the six-strong shortlist by Nicola Barker, whose novel Darkmans, a contemporary ghost story set in modern day Ashford, is a critical and popular favourite, and Lloyd Jones, whose Papua New Guinea novel Mister Pip, according to Amazon, saw the biggest Booker-driven sales boost from all the books on the 13-strong longlist.
of the 12-strong Hegarty family, and Indra Sinha whose Animal's People
provides a campaigning portrait of an Indian community which was blighted
by an American chemical company.
After making headlines for its restrained, thoughtful and - at 13 novels as opposed to the usual
18-plus - mercifully brief longlist, the Booker judges have, perhaps,
inched back towards safer territory with today's shortlist.
first-time novelists featured on the shortlist (Peter Ho Davies, Nikita Lalwani, Catherine O'Flynn and Tan Twan Eng).
Speaking after the event, this year's chair of the judges, Howard Davies, admitted that
choosing a shortlist from what was widely regarded as an adventurous and
intriguing longlist had been tough. "We hope," he said,
"that the choices we have made after passionate and careful consideration will attract wide interest."
Davies is joined on the judging panel for the 39th Man Booker prize, worth £50,000 to the winner, by poet Wendy Cope; by Giles Foden, former deputy literary editor of the
Guardian Saturday Review and author of The Last King of Scotland; by
biographer and critic Ruth Scurr; and by actor and writer Imogen Stubbs.
Michael K and Disgrace) and Peter Carey (True History of the Kelly Gang
and Oscar and Lucinda) as a double winner. The judges' verdict will be announced
on Tuesday October 16 at an awards ceremony at the Guildhall, London.