No Indians in Man Booker long list

Last Updated: Wed, Jul 29, 2009 14:50 hrs
<span style="font-family: arial; font-size: 12px; white-space: pre-wrap; ">Books</span>

London: The much awaited long list for the Man Booker Prize was announced here on Wednesday with heavyweights J.M. Coetzee and A.S. Byatt leading the pack of 13 - and there are no Indian novelists in contention this time.

Coetzee, who has won the prize twice, is competing this time with his semi-autobiographical work "Summertime", while Byatt has "The Children's Book" in the list.

Indian authors have monopolised short lists in recent years - Aravid Adiga won the prize last year for "The White Tiger" - there are no authors from the country in the long list.

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Others on the list are: Adam Foulds ("The Quickening Maze"), Sarah Hall ("How to paint a dead man"), Samantha Harvey ("The Wilderness"), James Lever ("Me Cheeta"), Hilary Mantel ("Wolf Hall"), Simon Mawer ("The Glass Room"), Ed O'Loughlin ("Not Untrue & Not Unkind"), James Scudamore ("Heliopolis"), Colm Toibin ("Brooklyn"), William Trevor ("Love and Summer") and Sarah Waters ("The Little Stranger").

"These are books that readers will want to get their hands on," the chair of judges, James Naughtie, said in a statement.

"The five Man Booker judges have settled on thirteen novels as the long list for this year's prize. We believe it to be one of the strongest lists in recent memory, with two former winners, four past-shortlisted writers, three first-time novelists and a span of styles and themes that make this an outstandingly rich fictional mix."

The jury considered more than 130 novels (including the work of nine former winners) and "found ourselves travelling in a fertile landscape. We kept discovering new talent as well as reacquainting ourselves with familiar writers, and emerged with a feeling that we were part of an exceptional year."

The short list will be announced Sep 8 and the winner Oct 6.

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