IFFP 2013 – Two Shortlists

The Independent foreign Fiction Prize shortlist is now out, and there are a few surprises in store (nothing new there then).  Of the sixteen longlisted titles who entered the race, only six remain – ten have been sent back to the sheds to contemplate their shortcomings.  In around a month’s time, one of these six will be standing on top of the pile, but for now, it’s time for all six to enjoy their moment in the sun – drum roll, please…

Official Shortlist for the 2013 Independent Foreign Fiction Prize

The Fall of the Stone City by Ismail Kadare

Of course, another small group of people has been reading the same collection of books, and recently we on the Shadow Panel announced our own shortlist!  The Shadow Panel consists of our esteemed chair, Stu, along with Mark, Gary, Lisa and me 🙂  I know you’re just itching to compare the two lists, so..

Shadow Panel Shortlist for the 2013 Independent Foreign Fiction Prize
Satantango by László Krasznahorkai
The Fall of the Stone City by Ismail Kadare
The Last of the Vostyachs by Diego Marani

So, the lists…  Well, we’ve chosen four of the six the real panel have chosen, and I have to say that, on the whole, it’s a better shortlist than was the case in 2012.  A couple of caveats though…  While I haven’t yet read Satantango, I’m very surprised that it hasn’t made the cut.  It did make the shortlist of the BTBA (the American version of the IFFP), and it was touted as a potential winner of both prizes – obviously not 😉

The big shock though is the inclusion of Bundu.  While I’m all for difference, this is the one book I hadn’t even considered putting on my shortlist.  Of course, for those with long memories, IFFP panels obviously love Alma Books a lot!

Oh well, onward and upward.  For a list of all the Shadow Panel’s reviews so far, please check out this page on Lisa’s blog which pulls them all together – happy reading 🙂

8 thoughts on “IFFP 2013 – Two Shortlists

  1. Rise – Yep 🙂 At the longlist stage, the four on both the BTBA and IFFP longlists ('Dublinesque', 'Traveller…', Satantango' and 'A Death in the Family') seemed to be the ones to beat. As we know, Knausgaard missed out completely, and the IFFP judges cut Knasznahorkai's novel. Michael Orthofer of The Complete Review (one of the BTBA judges) told me on Twitter that he was sorry about 'Dublinesque' but not so much about Neuman's book – for what it's worth 😉


  2. Interesting contrast between the two lists, more shared titles between them than last year I think? I was toying with the idea of reading the ones on the shortlist I'd not already got to but to be honest, I can't face two more books on WWII. The obsession with obligatory WWII books and passive women (dying, being used for breeding, being married off) is starting to make the prize feel rather irrelevant to me.


  3. Alex – A lot more similar 😉 I loved all of the four on both lists, wasn't overly keen on 'Trieste' (although others did like it more), and as for 'Bundu'… let's just say that I'm a tad puzzled by its presence. Not because it's a bad book, but because it just doesn't belong in this company 🙂


  4. Good books on both lists, don't think I need to mention my perplexity concerning Satantango/Bundu beyond there's nothing particularly bad about the latter it's just not on a par with the former.


  5. You do have a good track record in not second-guessing the judges, although this year your 'hit' rate is quite respectable! But I do understand what you mean about Bundu. Despite my love for genre fiction, I have to admit not all of it is of literary merit.


  6. Marina – Although it doesn't specifically state it, I'm sure this is a lit. fic. prize, which makes the inclusion of 'Bundu' a tad surprising. Still, the judges have made their choice…


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