The winner of the Man Booker prize 2016 is announced this evening. Here’s a reminder of the shortlist:
About a month ago I set myself the task of reading all six novels by the time of the announcement, but, alas, it seems that was a little ambitious! I have finished three of them though and am working my way through the fourth. I loved Hot Milk but was lukewarm about All That Man Is. I have reviewed both of these here already (see below). I have also completed Eileen, which I really enjoyed, and I’ll post a review of it here soon. I’m now part way through The Sellout, but to be honest I’m still waiting to decide whether I like it.
Based on what I’ve read so far, my favourite is the Deborah Levy. Hot Milk is a stunning literary achievement and I recommend it highly. It’s also thought-provoking to any woman with a mother! However, it’s not the most “Booker-ish” of novels (if you get me) and so I have a hunch that Madeleine Thien’s account of the relationship between a young Canadian girl and a refugee who has fled China following the events in Tianenmen Square, will win. It’s not that the others don’t have big themes (Levy and Szalay deal with questions of globalisation and migration, huge topics of our time, Moshfegh deals with abuse, self-abuse and personality disorders, and Beatty deals with the unresolved question of race in America), but from what I have heard about Do Not Say We Have Nothing it just feels like it may have the scale, the ambition and the gravitas of a winner.
So, just a few hours to find out if I’m right. Look out for my review of Eileen later in the week – it’s a corker of a novel!