The longlist for the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2013, formerly the Orange Prize, has now been announced. The twenty books that made the cut are listed below.
I’m a little ashamed to say that I haven’t read any of them.
- Kitty Aldridge, A Trick I Learned From Dead Men
- Kate Atkinson, Life After Life
- Ros Barber, The Marlowe Papers
- Shani Boianjiu, The People of Forever are Not Afraid
- Gillian Flynn, Gone Girl
- Sheila Heti, How Should A Person Be?
- A.M. Homes, May We Be Forgiven
- Barbara Kingsolver, Flight Behaviour
- Deborah Copaken Kogan, The Red Book
- Hilary Mantel, Bring Up the Bodies
- Bonnie Nadzam, Lamb
- Emily Perkins, The Forrests
- Michèle Roberts, Ignorance
- Francesca Segal, The Innocents
- Maria Semple, Where’d You Go, Bernadette
- Elif Shafak, Honour
- Zadie Smith, NW
- M.L. Stedman, The Light Between Oceans
- Carrie Tiffany, Mateship with Birds
- G. Willow Wilson, Alif the Unseen
When it comes to literature and writing, I find awards ceremonies to be an interesting phenomenon. In my opinion, the works that are often feted by the establishment are not the novels that the average reader enjoys. Some may be critically acclaimed, but they can be hard to read and lacking a plot-driven story.
So how can we judge the value of a book? Does an award nomination recommend it as something worth reading?
I admit, at the moment I’m behind in my reading. I’m so far behind that I skim through most of my reading material as quickly as I can, abandoning things much more quickly than I ever would have done in the past.
Unfortunately I’ve committed to reviewing a few books that haven’t turned out to be that great, which has had a negative influence on my reading time. But once these reviews are complete, I plan to indulge in reading purely for pleasure – I might even manage to squeeze in one of the books from this list!
Which would you recommend?