The field is narrowing for the Man Booker prize, with the long list being whittled back to 6 contenders.
Our favourite of course, given the Australian connection, is J.M Coetzee’s Summerland, which would put the South African born and raised author on a hat trick given his wins for Disgrace and the Life and Times of Michael K.
A S Byatt is also up for a second win with The Children’s Book. Possession was the winner in 1990.
Hilary Mantel’s Elizabethan novel Wolf Hall was the one that was whispered in my ear when it was released onto the Australian market several months ago.
And it won’t be easy to come up with one name on October 6, according to judge chair Simon Naughtie.
We’re thrilled to be able to announce such a strong shortlist, so enticing that it will certainly give us a headache when we come to select the winner. The choice will be a difficult one. There is thundering narrative, great inventiveness, poetry and sharp human insight in abundance.“These are six writers on the top of their form. They’ve given us great enjoyment already, and it’s a measure of our confidence in their books that all of us are looking forward to reading them yet again before we decide on the prizewinner. What more could we ask?
Meantime, we read, and we wait.