Tuesday, April 13, 2010

If It's Not a Good Read ...

I am often amazed by how sloppy the books by massive names are ... Sometimes we took a deep breath before agreeing that probably this book, had it been written by a debut author, would not have been looked at.
Richard Lea in The Guardian quotes Anne Fine one of the judges for the IMPAC Dublin Literary award : Philp Roth, Salman Rushdie and José Saramago are among those who failed to make the shortlist this year.  and I think that we would wholeheartedly agree with her criterion :
If it's not a good read, then it's not a good book
(But have to agree to differ with the judges about Joseph O'Neill's novel being a "good read".  Please do let me know, anyone out there, if you actually enjoyed it!)

The shortlist which includes works in translation  :
The Twin by Gerbrand Bakker (Translated from the original Dutch by David Colmer)

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery (Translated from the original French by Alison Anderson)

In Zodiac Light by Robert Edric

Settlement by Christoph Hein

The Believers by Zoë Heller

Netherland by Joseph O'Neill

God's Own County by Ross Raisin 
Libraries around the world selected the books for the longlist as usual. The National Library of Malaysia nominated Rainforest Tears. (More here.)  I am sure that Paul Leslie Smith and his publisher Marshall Cavendish will be thrilled at having made the longlist. I'm surprised that there was no publicity about this.

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