Thursday, January 20, 2011

Melissa W - in which I try again in 2011 for Challenge Success

Hello! I'm Melissa W from Scuffed Slippers and Wormy Books (and @balletbookworm on Twitter) and I'm formally joining the Complete Booker blog.

I have a personal goal to read all the Booker-winning novels - and a few of the shortlists/longlists along the way - so the Complete Booker perpetual challenge is right up my alley.  I tried the 2010 challenge but got sidetracked (*sigh*) and only made about fifty-percent of the goal.  So I'm going to give it another go in 2011 and join as an official contributor, too.

I'm going to start at the "Pick-a-Mix of Six" level with (most likely):
The Sea, the Sea by Iris Murdoch
The Sea by John Banville (which I think is coming out as a movie this year, so I should read it)
Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie
The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
The Bone People by Keri Hulme (the new Penguin Ink cover is awesome)

If I finish those I'll bump up the goal to "The Booker's Dozen" (pefect opportunity to read Possession again).

I've read some of the past winners and shortlisted novels (these links go to my blog reviews):
2010 Man Booker winner:  The Finkler Question by Howard Jacobson
2010 shortlist:  Room by Emma Donoghue
2010 "Lost" Man Booker winner: Troubles by JG Farrell
2009 Man Booker winner:  Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
2009 shortlist: The Children's Book by A.S. Byatt
2008 Man Booker winner:  The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga
2007 Man Booker winner:  The Gathering by Anne Enright (no blog review)
2003 shortlist:  Brick Lane by Monica Ali (no blog review)
2003 shortlist:  Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood (no blog review)
2001 shortlist:  Atonement by Ian McEwan (sort-of blog reivew here, but mostly about the movie)
2000 Man Booker winner:  The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood (no blog review)
1996 shortlist:  Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood (no blog review)
1992 Man Booker winner:  The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje (no blog review)
1990 Man Booker winner:  Possession by A.S. Byatt (no blog review)
1988 shortlist:  The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie
1986 shortlist:  The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood (review for Banned Books Week 2010)

I also tried to read Oscar and Lucinda (1988 winner), mostly because the edition at the library had a picture of Ralph Finnes on the cover, but I didn't get very far - I was a biology major with a half an eye on the book and half on my organic chemistry.  Since Oscar and Lucinda wasn't for class, it had to go back to the library but I'd be willing to give it another go.


  1. Welcome, Melissa! You have a great list of books planned for this year. The Remains of the Day is my absolute favorite Booker Prize winner.

    Happy reading!

  2. Once a while I would be reading your reviews as I have done here. The Booker is really an interesting challenge. I may hop in at one point.