Tuesday, October 06, 2009

the end is nigh

This year I’ve struggled to find enough time to devote to my Booker experience. I’ve kept up with my reading aims, but not the consequent blogging. And here we are, on the day of the big announcement, and here I am, cracking out a quick post to give me some sense of last minute involvement.

You’ll have to take it on trust when I tell you that my shortlist predictions were very accurate this year. I guessed 5 out of 6 of the judges choices. I wonder if that might help me in guessing the winner again this year?

Since my last post I read The Little Stranger and didn’t think that much of it. I conclude once again that I just don’t get Waters. I read The Glass Room which I loved and has jumped out as one of my best reads of 2009. I read Summertime which excited me and made me think a lot, and made me realize Coetzee is really quite cool. And I’m currently ploughing on through The Children’s Book - which I’m liking quite a bit, but I’d enjoy far more if it was in paperback and not such a killer to hold.

And so to winners and thereby losers. My personal pick for the Booker Prize 2009 would be The Quickening Maze. It’s stuck with me long after reading, and I think it has a lot of hidden depths. It would be great to get it to a wider readership, who might find unexpected pleasure in reading the prose of a poet. But if I can’t have that I’d be very happy if Mawer took the prize.

But I feel, as ever, that the judging panel won’t agree with me. Sod’s Law would have Wolf Hall win as I haven’t read that one (and doubt I will). I doubt they’ll give it to Byatt or Coetzee again. Overall I’ve got a nasty feeling that Sarah Waters will win this year…