Monday, August 27, 2007

Who Won, and Who Might

Nah, not the Booker. Not yet. There are other literary awards around y'know.

The Scotsman
reports (found via) that Cormac McCarthy has won this year's James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction with The Road, (which also took the Pulitzer Prize) while Byron Rogers won the award for best biography for his book The Man Who Went Into the West on the Welsh poet R.S. Thomas (reviewed Sunday in the Observer.)

Eric beat me to blogging the longlist of the Guardian First Book Award which is a delightfully mixed bag of reads from different genres, showcasing new writing talent.

And here's the list with a one-liner for each:

Tahmima Anam - A Golden Age
A fictional account of the Bangladesh War of Independence, interwoven with the novelist's own family history.
Rajiv Chandrasekaran - Imperial Life in the Emerald City
An account of life in Baghdad's Green Zone from the Washington Post's former bureau chief.
(It also won the Samuel Johnson Award for non-fiction, you may remember.)

Jim Endersby - A Guinea Pig's History of Biology
A different perspective on the development of evolution from a historian of science.
Joshua Ferris - Then We Came to the End
A wry novel which looks at the realities of working life.
Rosemary Hill - God's Architect: Pugin and the Building of Romantic Britain
The first major biography of the architect Augustus Pugin, inventor of the English Gothic Revival.
Paul Mason - Live Working or Die Fighting
BBC Newsnight's business and industry correspondent puts the new working class born from globalisation into context, alongside the epic history of the labour movement.
Dinaw Mengestu - Children of the Revolution
A haunting evocation of one man's search for the American dream.
Daljit Nagra - Look We Have Coming to Dover!
A collection of poems exploring the complications of multicultural Britain.
Catherine O'Flynn - What Was Lost
A ghost story and a mystery set in a shopping centre.
(Also nominated for the Booker Prize.)

Karen Russell - St Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves
Ten short stories charting loss, love and the difficult art of growing up.
There are links to reviews and other articles on the Guardian website. The shortlist will be announced in the first week of November.


The Great Swifty said...

Saw THE ROAD at the Kinokuniya's in Sydney, was intrigued by it. But figured that I could buy it anywhere, I didn't bother.

I'm still plowing through Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon. THICK book.

BTW: Photos of me at Pablo Neruda's house, La Chascona! Sorry bout the plug, but I turned my Chilean trip into a Neruda pilgrimate.

Sham said...

Aisey man! Now I have to get down to finishing the Road:)

bibliobibuli said...

swifty - oh i will have to go read all about your pilgrimage!

ted insisted i buy stephenson's "snow crash" the other day in kino as i said i fancied reading some more gibson and he said he thinks stephenson is better! haven't got rpund to reading it yet 'cos of the booker marathon

sham - you do!

Sham said...

I have to get my hands on Jim Endersby - A Guinea Pig's History of Biology!!!!!

So many books, so little time. I am pish toshing The Secret for now. I have been accused of being a book snob because of it- well I am snubbing my nose then!

Madcap Machinist said...

"A Guinea Pig's History of Biology" looks sweet, and I want to get "Then We Came to the End". Daljit Nagra's book, definitely, it's the one with 'Singh's Song' right?

I don't think I've seen any of these books at the stores.

KayKay said...

The Road...again!! Sigh! All the more reason to approach all future award winners with extra caution...

The Great Swifty said...

I don't know, I personally prefer Gibson more. Maybe he's more, er, accessible.

I've only read Neuromancer and Idoru.

As for Stephenson, I've read Snow Crash and Zodiac, now Cryptonomicon, dunno, he's more, dense, seemingly bigger scale, more ideas, but kinda too hardcore for my tastes.

And yeah, my Chilean trip is the stuff reserved for great literature.

animah said...

Ooo - I want the wolf book. And the O'Flynn - ghost and shopping centres - very Malaysian.
Read Zaid Ibrahim's book - perhaps the only emboldened UMNO MP today.

Greenbottle said...

zaid ibrahim..wasn't he the guy who got disciplined by unmno for "money politics" sometimes back?...then again this is no surprise with umno...

bibliobibuli said...

greenbottle - yeah i learned that when i was googling around to find other references to the book. which is why bloggers should maintain their integrity and stay away from politicians!