The 2016 Man Booker International Prize Longlist!

MBI2016 Logo RGB pinkI’m not sure about everyone else, but I’ve been waiting for what seems to have been years for today to come around (like a child on Christmas Eve…), but the day has finally arrived, and the twelve thirteen books making up the 2016 Man Booker International Prize longlist have finally been selected.  So, without further ado, here are your finalists🙂

*****

José Eduardo Agualusa (Angola) & Daniel Hahn
A General Theory of Oblivion 
(Harvill Secker)

Elena Ferrante (Italy) & Ann Goldstein
The Story of the Lost Child
 (Europa Editions)

Han Kang (South Korea) & Deborah Smith
The Vegetarian 
(Portobello Books)

Maylis de Kerangal (France) & Jessica Moore
Mend the Living
 (Maclehose Press)

Eka Kurniawan (Indonesia) & Labodalih Sembiring
Man Tiger (Verso Books)

Yan Lianke (China) & Carlos Rojas
The Four Books
 (Chatto & Windus)

Fiston Mwanza Mujila (Democratic Republic of Congo/Austria) & Roland Glasser
Tram 83
 (Jacaranda)

Raduan Nassar (Brazil) & Stefan Tobler
A Cup of Rage 
(Penguin Modern Classics)

Marie NDiaye (France) & Jordan Stump
Ladivine
 (Maclehose Press)

Kenzaburō Ōe (Japan) & Deborah Boliver Boehm
Death by Water
 (Atlantic Books)

Aki Ollikainen (Finland) & Emily Jeremiah and Fleur Jeremiah
White Hunger (Peirene Press)

Orhan Pamuk (Turkey) & Ekin Oklap
A Strangeness in My Mind 
(Faber & Faber)

Robert Seethaler (Austria) & Charlotte Collins
A Whole Life
 (Picador)

*****
Well, let’s go back to my predictions and see how close I was…

Geography: 7/13 outside Europe (my guess was 5/12!)
Gender: 4/13 women (my guess was 4/12)
Length: One over 500 pages (as I suspected!)
Presses: 7/13 small presses (although, what is small… my guess was about half)
Genre: 0/13 as far as I can see (my guess was one…)

Pretty close to what I thought – although I’m not sure I would have thought of these titles😉

*****
The next step, of course, is to source, read, review and rate the selection, and I won’t be alone in my endeavours here.  As previously mentioned, we have an eight-strong Shadow Panel ready to go, and we’ll be doing our best to get through the whole longlist and give you a sense of who’s hot (and who’s not…) this year.  Stay tuned – there’ll be a lot more appearing here about the prize in the days to come🙂

23 thoughts on “The 2016 Man Booker International Prize Longlist!

    1. Stu – Yes, that’s my only major task (well, apart from sourcing some of the books!). As predicted, not too many long ones this year, and a couple of rather short ones too…

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  1. Looks like an interesting mix, some well-known authors and a few (to me) new names. So far I have read only two of the books by Kurniawan and Seethaler, and both are extraordinary. Looking forward to your reviews, Tony!

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    1. Thomas – It’s a good list, even if there are some omissions (Krasznahorkai) – I think I’ll enjoy reading the ones I haven’t already tried🙂

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  2. Looks a very strong list to me.

    I’ve read the Pamuk, Lianke, Kang (albeit Human Acts is even better) and Ferrante and was literally sitting down to start Oe at midnight last night waiting for the list. And another 6 or so were on my “to read” list.

    Indeed if I had to make a criticism at all it’s that there isn’t much unexpected on the list, authors or books that weren’t already well trailed. A Whole Life and A Cup of Rage are the only two for me.

    As for omissions, can just about forgive them Krasznahorkai given he won the MBI last year, although surprised Mersault Investigation didn’t make it.

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    1. Paul – I agree, a very good list, albeit with some notable omissions (Krasznahorkai, as you mentioned, first and foremost). I also agree with your view on how familiar the books are, but for me that’s a strength, not a weakness – I’m not a fan of choosing obscure books which turn out to be weak…

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      1. “I’m not a fan of choosing obscure books which turn out to be weak…” – yes definitely agree with that, but I do live in hope that awards like this will pick obscure books that turn out to be major discoveries!

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    1. Emma – Well, we’ll be working on our response over the weekend, so you should soon be able to see the official view of the Shadow Panel!

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  3. Was Human Acts eligible? I was hoping to see it on the list, but shall have to read The Vegetarian. I think the list is very exciting, lots of titles jump out at me, wanting to read, good luck with the shadow jury reading and discussing, looking forward to and very much appreciate all you have to share!

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