Monday, October 17, 2011

Thoughts on the 2011 Man Booker Shortlist

I've read 5 of the 6 shortlist titles and have written reviews on my blog. My ranking for the prize is as follows:

1. Pigeon English **** 1/2 (my review)
2. The Sense of an Ending **** (my review)
3. Snowdrops **** 1/2 (my review) OR The Sisters Brothers **** 1/2 (my review) TIED
6. Jamrach’s Menagerie **** 1/2 (my review)

The reason Snowdrops and The Sisters Brothers are below The Sense of an Ending is that I have mixed feelings about a 'genre' book winning the prize, but I loved the books themselves. I also have a longish post on my thoughts on the controversy surrounding the list HERE.


  1. Thank you for your thoughts - you have me all excited about the announcement!

  2. Why do you have mixed feelings about a "genre" novel winning the Booker? I'm hesitant to write a longish response to your post, in which I would vehemently defend "genre" and excoriate the Booker's snobbish relationship with "genre" but I want to know your reasoning for "mixed feelings".

    I read the Booker prize winners to introduce myself to new literature, but I will never ever point to the Bookers as an authority of quality or timelessness. To do so is absurd. Even the National Book Award, the other most "respected" prize, has been awarded to now-forgotten novels, including "genre" novels.

  3. Michelle, welcome back! Thanks for sharing your assessment of the short list. I bought Sense of an Ending recently and will probably read Pigeon English someday, too.