Introducing Shiny’s Booker Week

Dear Readers,

The Booker Prize will be 50 years old this year. The longlist for this year’s Man Booker Prize will be announced on the 24th of July, the shortlist will follow in September with the prize being awarded in mid-October.

To kick off the proceedings, the longlist announcement will be preceded by a weekend celebrating the (Man) Booker Prize, culminating in the awarding of a ‘Golden Booker’. The Golden Booker is being run on different lines to the previous two ‘Best of Booker’ prizes, (held on big anniversaries and both won by Salman Rushdie’s 1981 winner Midnight’s Children). This year, single judges were appointed for each decade of the prize to pick one book each. The five decade winners have been put to the public vote which is now closed, and the overall winner will be announced in London on July 8th after a weekend of literary events on the Southbank. Shiny Ed Annabel is going and will report back.

The five books are:

  • 1970s – Robert McCrum chose In a Free State by V S Naipaul
  • 1980s – Lemn Sissay picked Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively
  • 1990s – Kamila Shamsie chose The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje
  • 2000s – Simon Mayo picked Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
  • 2010s – Hollie McNish chose Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

It’s impossible to predict who will win, although we reckon it’s more likely to be one of the middle three…

Alongside the Golden Booker vote, readers have been encouraged to read the winners,
and we couldn’t resist joining in, but we’ve shared out the reading!

Over this coming week, we’ll cover a decade of the prize a day, plus look at some of the books we think ought should have won but didn’t.

Our wonderful team of reviewers have really pulled out the stops for us, writing some super pieces on 47 out of 52 prize-winning books. (There were two tied years, plus the additional 1970 Missing Booker prize, hence 52 winners). A massive thank you to everyone who has contributed to the week.

We hope you enjoy our tour of the Booker Prize winning novels which are pictured in order below – there is just one missing which proved impossible to get hold of. Do let us know your longlist suggestions for the 50th prize too.

Annabel and Harriet

The missing book is Something To Answer For by P H Newby – the very first winner, which appears to never have been published in paperback (although PoD copies are available). Second-hand hardbacks are priced in the £100s!

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