Man Booker Longlist musings

Better late than never here’s some thoughts on this years longlist. This will be the third time I’ve attempted to read the longlist and the second time I will review them in detail. I thoroughly enjoyed the rush last year although I found the longlist to be underwhelming as a whole. This years International was less so – although I didn’t read the whole list, I found some true gems + new authors to adore.

This year’s longlist? Exciting, predictable yet surprising with a few books I had not known existed. Note: predictable as a MB descriptor is kind of obsolete as those who follow the MB are generally rather knowledged in book releases so it kind of makes sense that one would be able to predict part of the longlist.

Exciting. I’ve already read two before it was announced! Hamid’s Exit West and Smith’s Swing Time.  Ahead of the game this year – feels good. I really enjoyed Hamid’s novel and have since read some of his other works – definitely a new fave author of mine. An old fave – Zadie, my girl, however Swing Time fell flat for me. Reviews of these to come.  Now to the rest of the list.

4 3 2 1 by Paul Auster

Kind of not surprised at this. Kind of intimated by it’s size. It’ll be my first Auster.

Days Without End by Sebastian Barry

Again, not surprised due to it’s hype + Costa award win. Honestly don’t know much about it. Will probably borrow from the library at some point.

History of Wolves by Emily Fridlund

Just read this one from the library. Review to come. Had never heard of it.

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

A decent 3-4 star read. Enjoyable. Deserving of it’s place to say the least.

Solar Bones by Mike McCormack

One I had marked to read. Have currently got it out from the library. A whole book in one sentence. Intriguing.

Reservoir 13 by Jon McGregor

Have started reading this one. It is delicious. I knew next to nothing about it and had never heard of it. Probably want to read everything Jon has ever written.

Elmet by Fiona Mozley

Surprised. Have never heard of this one. Again, very intrigued.

The Ministry Of Utmost Happiness by Arundhati Roy

Bought this one the other day. Lots of hype. Have yet to read anything by her. But I have an inkling I will enjoy her work.

Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

Predictable yet pleased. Seems so innovative and fresh. Have been meaning to read for the longest time. Finally bought a copy.

Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie

Never heard of prior to it’s listing. Sounds amazing. The cover is to die for. It’s been pre-ordered.

Autumn by Ali Smith

Love me some Ali Smith. Predictable somewhat but deserving I imagine. My copy is in the mail.

Swing Time by Zadie Smith

As much as I love Zadie, this one floored me. Surprised to say the least. Would’ve preferred Homegoing or Stay With Me – flawless debuts, alas. It may not be my favourite of Zadie’s but the themes she encompasses are no doubt very important. Wouldn’t be annoyed if it was shortlisted.

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

Predictable but maybe it’s worth it. I don’t know much about it, but after loving Homegoing (and coming from a country where slave narratives aren’t always taught in school) I’m rather excited to pick it up and see what the buzz is about.

And there you are!

What are your thoughts on this year’s longlist?! Which ones are you keen to read and which ones would you rather see in the basement growing dust then on this list?

Stay tuned for reviews,

for now,

Do svidaniya bookish friends



4 thoughts on “Man Booker Longlist musings”

    1. I am very excited for it! i’ve flicked it through it in bookstore several times salivating somewhat. The only Saunders I’ve read was a reading on the NYer fiction podcast – I think it was called Adam…

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Very impressed by your Booker-longlist-reading-ability! Its something I sadly would not have the patience for…! Definitely want to read the Ali Smith and the Fridlund – I feel like I’ve seen a lot of pictures of the latter on Instagram, and the premise sounds suitably intriguing… I’ll look forward to reading your review!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for your comment. I have quite surprised myself having the patience for it as I’m a total mood reader and this seems to be the only tbr I can actually stick to :’) …I’m working on my review for Fridlund’s novel, if you are excited about it, I’d say definitely give it a go. Keen for Ali Smith too, she’s such a great writer xx

      Liked by 1 person

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