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Author Topic: The Booker Prize
Willowdale Wizard
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posted 16 September 2003 12:56 PM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The shortlist for the Booker is out.

Folks like Barbara Gowdy, JM Coetzee, Martin Amis and Mark Haddon haven't made the shortlist.

Margaret Atwood and Monica Ali are the two favourites among those who remain.


From: england (hometown of toronto) | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 16 September 2003 01:05 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Wow. An out-an-out science fiction novel on the Booker short list (Oryx and Crake)[1]. Who wouldda thunk it?

[1]Margaret Atwood, for marketing reasons, denies that it is science fiction, calling it "speculative fiction," since it doesn't involve future science that is as yet incomprehensible. I beg to differ--some of the neurocognitive genetic manipulations she dreams require knowledge that is as much beyond our grasp than faster-than-light travel. Doris Lessing had the courage to call the "Canopus in Argos" books "space fiction"...


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skdadl
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posted 16 September 2003 01:08 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
WW, although I've read a lot of the reviews (you know what's coming ), I haven't, uh, actually, y'know, read any of the, um, books.

I am surprised that Coetzee, Swift, and Amis especially were left out. I love Swift.

Can you tell us what the gossip is about the list and the favourites? From the reviews I've seen, Ali seems to be causing a special stir.


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Willowdale Wizard
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posted 16 September 2003 01:31 PM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
hmm, "second generation" was a two-part TV movie this past sunday and monday night. it was pretty ambitious: imagine "king lear" but 1st generation hindu and muslim immigrants from india and their sons/daughters, plus white/indian relationships, plus the emerging asian music industry (bengali music from london's east end).

monica ali is an interesting candidate for the booker.

i'm not saying that she's the favourite with many of the bookies because she's asian, but with her, actors like parmindra nagra (bend it like beckham, lead actress in that 2nd generation thing, ER next year) and musical folks like talvin singh and nitin sawnhney,

the cultural scene in britain is changing.

ali's book is good, i've read it. i've also read atwood's, though i prefer her sci-fi take in the handmaid's tale.

i know nothing about the remaining candidates, except that zoe heller (british, living in NYC) used to be a newspaper writer. of the others (damon galgut, south africa; clare morrall, birmingham, england; dbc pierre, australian who grew up in mexico, now living in ireland), pierre looks the most interesting by a country mile.

[ 17 September 2003: Message edited by: Willowdale Wizard ]


From: england (hometown of toronto) | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
Willowdale Wizard
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posted 15 October 2003 05:11 AM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
dbc pierre, australian who grew up in mexico, now living in ireland), pierre looks the most interesting by a country mile.

well, it turns out that dbc pierre's real name is peter finlay, that "dbc" stands for "dirty but clean", and it gets better:

quote:
Last week, he confessed to the Guardian to betraying and fleecing his friends in a decade-long rampage over four continents that culminated in swindling an elderly American artist out of his home.

In his 42 years he has managed to get himself shot by a neighbour in Mexico City, work up debts of hundreds of thousands of dollars, cultivate drug and gambling addictions and leave behind a trail of wronged women, despite having to have his face reconstructed by surgeons after a horrific car crash. In between he has managed unsuccessful careers as a filmmaker, treasure hunter, smuggler and graphic artist.


naturally, he won the booker, since it sounds like a thorough preparation for being a novelist, no?

it's a 50 000 prize,

so now he can start paying it back. with the millionth copy of "life of pi" sold the other day, his creditors must be happy.

more from the guardian and the bbc.


From: england (hometown of toronto) | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
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posted 15 October 2003 09:59 AM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
How prescient of you, WW.

This is a curiosity, isn't it? I need to read the book before I say more -- and maybe read more of his biography before I say more about that. As you say, though, given the fairly academic and protected worlds many novelists have kept to for the last couple of generations, this guy's story sets him apart, at least.


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4t2
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posted 15 October 2003 01:36 PM      Profile for 4t2     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Pierre, as you point out, now lives in Ireland, and gave a wonderful interview to Irish radio this afternoon - it is absolutely fascinating.

Listen to the whole feature (acceptance speech etc) or just the interview. RealAudio required.

Although this is not always a great show (BBC does it much better) the Yeats fans among us will appreciate this interview with Roy Foster (heard last week), who has just come out with the second part of his Yeats biography (reviewed by the Guardian here).

[ 15 October 2003: Message edited by: 4t2 ]


From: Beyond the familiar... | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged

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