The longlist for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award has been announced, 154 novels in all. It is a varied selection of books, including mysteries and speculative fiction in larger numbers than I would have expected, but with a list that long, they have room for just about anything. Some of the books, first published in English in 2011, have already won other literary prizes.
This big-purse award involves a wide-ranging selection process. "The nomination process for the Award is unique as nominations are made by libraries in capital and major cities throughout the world. Participating libraries can nominate up to three novels each year for the Award." The longlist includes all of the books nominated by all of the libraries.
Online odds makers are favoring Julian Barnes's The Sense of an Ending. I liked the book but will be surprised if it wins the prize.
Others I read and reviewed (search the sidebar for the posts) are:
- Please Look After Mom by Kyung-sook Shin
- The Cat's Table by Michael Ondaatje
- River of Smoke by Amitav Ghosh
- The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt
- The Sly Company of People Who Care by Rahul Bhattacharya
Others I read but did not review are:
- Sarah Thornhill by Kate Grenville, the third novel in the trilogy that began with The Secret River. This latest book was a good read but not up to the level of the first one.
- All That I Am by Anna Funder won Australia's Miles Franklin prize this year, as well as several other awards. It is a superb novel that I will get around to reviewing. It will be a big surprise if it does not move on to the shortlist.
- Jamrach's Menagerie by Carol Birch, a beautifully written novel that includes some gruesome plot developments on the high seas that made it difficult to write about without spoilers.
Looking over the nominees revealed my growing impatience with unsatisfactory fiction. I counted twelve books, including some literary prize winners, that I abandoned in disappointment. Curious to see how the judges will evaluate my favorite and least favorite novels. A check of the online catalog at Worldcat.org shows that my local library has many of the longlisted novels. On the other hand, quite a few of the books have not yet been published in the U.S.
The IMPAC Dublin shortlist of up to ten titles will be announced in April 2013.