The shortlist for the Booker Prize 2019 has been announced. The shortlisted stories “encompass a modern reworking of Don Quixote set in America and Britain and taking in opioids and meta fiction by Rushdie; a sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale from Atwood; a story of a life after death in Istanbul, narrated by a murdered woman as her life force ebbs, from Shafak; the intersecting stories of 12 black women whose lives touch in 20th and 21st century Britain from Evaristo; a star-crossed love story set in Nigeria and Cyprus from Obioma – who also becomes a two-time shortlistee; and a thousand-page, one sentence freewheeling epic about information and ecology from Ellmann.”
There is only one British author on the shortlist, with the mix reflecting the polyglot and intermingled nature of the modern world.
The shortlisted titles are:
- Margaret Atwood (Canada), The Testaments(Vintage, Chatto & Windus)
- Lucy Ellmann (USA/UK), Ducks, Newburyport (Galley Beggar Press)
- Bernardine Evaristo (UK), Girl, Woman, Other(Hamish Hamilton)
- Chigozie Obioma (Nigeria), An Orchestra of Minorities(Little Brown)
- Salman Rushdie (UK/India), Quichotte(Jonathan Cape)
- Elif Shafak (UK/Turkey), 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World (Viking)
The Ruin – Another Win at the Davitt Awards… and a Film
Better Reading favourite, Dervla McTiernan has won the best adult novel award for The Rúin (HarperCollins Publishers Australia) at Sisters in Crime’s 19th Davitt Awards for best crime books. The Rúin has already been shortlisted for numerous awards and now fans will be thrilled to hear that it’s being made into a film starring Colin Farrell.
Other winners on the night:
Sydney author, Bri Lee, took out the debut award for Eggshell Skull (Allen & Unwin), about her journey through the criminal justice system as both a victim of sexual assault and a lawyer. Eggshell Skull, described by the judges as “pulling no punches on a highly sensitive topic”, has won several awards including the Biography of the Year at the ABIAs.
Melbourne writers otherwise scooped the awards, winning four of the six awards plus a highly commended.
The Davitt (Best Young Adult) went to Sarah Epstein, for her debut novel, Small Spaces (Walker Books); the children’s award to Judith Rossell for Wakestone Hall (ABC Books), the final in her Stella Montgomery trilogy; the non-fiction award to Chloe Hooper for her book on the Black Saturday fires, The Arsonist (Penguin Random House); and readers’ choice to Jane Harper for her outback thriller The Lost Man (Pan MacMillan Australia). Aoife Clifford was highly commended for her second Eliza Carmody novel, Second Sight (Simon & Schuster).