Thursday 27 October 2016

Man Booker Shortlist 2016 announced with 'unconventional' choices

Sherna Noah

Published 13/09/2016 | 12:12

Man Booker 2016 shortlist has been revealed
Man Booker 2016 shortlist has been revealed

The Man Booker shortlist, one of the most prestigious literary honours in the world, has been announced.

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British writers Deborah Levy and Graeme Macrae Burnet have been shortlisted for this year's Man Booker Prize.

Levy is in the running for Hot Milk, which examines "female rage and sexuality" and the "monstrous nature of motherhood."

Scottish writer Graeme Macrae Burnet is shortlisted for His Bloody Project, a crime story and memoir exploring the life of a 19th century crofter.

Debut novelist Ottessa Moshfegh, a US writer, has also made this year's list for Eileen.

The shortlist also features US author Paul Beatty, Canadian-British writer David Szalay and Canadian Madeleine Thien.

2016 Man Booker Shortlist

  • Paul Beatty (US) The Sellout
  • Deborah Levy (UK) Hot Milk
  • Graeme Macrae Burnet (UK) His Bloody Project
  • Ottessa Moshfegh (US) Eileen
  • David Szalay (Canada-UK) All That Man Is
  • Madeleine Thien (Canada) Do Not Say We Have Nothing

Scottish author Macrae Burnet is now favourite to land this year's prize for what is only his second novel.

His Bloody Project has odds of 5-2, displacing former long-term favourite Levy (3-1) into second spot, according to Ladbrokes.

His Bloody Project was put into print by independent publisher Contraband, a tiny Glasgow-based publisher run by just two people.

The author recounts the murders, in 1869, of three people in a remote crofting community and the subsequent trial of 17-year-old Roderick Macrae, one of the writer's ancestors.

The book features the teenager's memoir, along with court transcripts, medical reports, police statements and newspaper articles.

Levy is the only previously-shortlisted author, for Swimming Home in 2012.

Chairwoman of the judges Dr Amanda Foreman said: "The Man Booker Prize subjects novels to a level of scrutiny that few books can survive.

"In re-reading our incredibly diverse and challenging longlist, it was both agonising and exhilarating to be confronted by the sheer power of the writing.

"As a group we were excited by the willingness of so many authors to take risks with language and form.

"The final six reflect the centrality of the novel in modern culture - in its ability to champion the unconventional, to explore the unfamiliar, and to tackle difficult subjects."

The 2016 winner will be announced on October 25 in London's Guildhall, at a ceremony broadcast by the BBC.

This is the third year that the prize has been open to writers of any nationality, writing in English and published in the UK.

Previously, it was open only to authors from the UK and Commonwealth, Ireland and Zimbabwe.

Judges said that all the shortlisted authors played with language and form and tackled unfamiliar and challenging subjects, covering subjects from murder in 19th century Scotland to classical music in Revolutionary China.

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