A 2019 Man Booker Prize longlist chat

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A few weeks ago, I was browsing the 2019 Man Booker Prize longlist and proceeded to add every. single. book. to my TBR on Goodreads. Along with adding the 2019 longlist, I also added some backlist titles from previous years as well. For no other reason than to keep these books on my radar while the months (possibly) years go by. I’m not a lunatic, I organized all the books into their own “Man Booker Prize” shelf for safe keeping. You can check out the list (and add me on Goodreads) if you’d like here.

I’m not a book snob or whatever else you’re thinking. I just like to know what’s happening during awards like this one and to get me out of my comfort reading zone, okay! There are currently 31 books on that shelf that I have yet to start reading any of them. There were a few titles (The Mars Room, Milkman, Normal People, Autumn, The Water Cure, Exist West) that were already on my shelf before realizing they were listed for a Man Booker Prize at some point but for the most part they’re all new to me.

Of course I wanted to have read through some of the 2019 longlist but I currently have a reading schedule I’m trying to keep and I haven’t been able to squeeze any of these in yet. The longlist was announced on July 24, the shortlist will be announced on September 9 and the winner will be announced on October 14 with judges Peter Florence (Chair), Afua Hirsch, Liz Calder , Xiaolu Guo and Joanna MacGregor.

Now let’s take a look at the the 13 longlisted books.

Night Boat to tangier

I love this cover. It’s so creepy and gives off the right amount of crime vibes without over doing it. Said to be dark in humour with an extraordinary journey back in time full of violence, romance, mutual betrayal and serial exiles.

The Testament

Yet to be released sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale, The Testament, has already made quite some buzz. Set 15 years after Offred stepped into the unknown we will finally find out what happened to her after the van door closed.

My sister, the serial killer

This one seems wild. Set in Nigeria about a complicated sister relationship, Korede knows when her sister, Ayoola, calls she will need to bring her murder cleanup kit. Conflicted if she should call the police but it’s not until Ayoola starts dating one of her coworker, that she’s been secretly in love with does Korede feel conflicted on who’s side to be on. I’m super curious about this.

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the man who saw everything

I’m excited to read a Deborah Levy book. It being this one or her other two book that were also nominated for the Man Booker Prize. It just hasn’t happened yet but this one is about a narcissistic historian who’s life changes trajectory after being grazed by an oncoming car.

”Levy traverses the vast reaches of the human imagination while artfully blurring sexual and political binaries--feminine and masculine, East and West, past and present--to reveal the full spectrum of our world.”

Frankissstein

I enjoyed reading sci-fi but for some reason rarely pick up the genre. This one’s set in 1816 when 19-year-old Mary Shelley writes a story about creating a non-biological life-form. With Ry, in Brexit Britian, a young transgender doctor who’s following in love against better judgement. Lonely Ron, just divorced and living with his mom again. And across the Atlantic, in Phoenix, Arizona, a cryogenics facility is housing dozens of medically and legally dead bodies waiting to return to life.

Lanny

Magical realism hasn’t been a genre that I tend to pick up or really enjoy but that has never stop me from continually picking them up. Or maybe I’ve been picking up the wrong ones for me. This one sounds like a folklore is coming back to taunt the new boy in the village. The village belongs to the people who live in the village, to people who lived in it hundreds of years ago and it belongs to Dead Papa Toothwort. A figure schoolchildren used to draw. Green and leafy, choked by tendrils growing out of his mouth.

Lost children archive

This one sounds very cool. Told through the voices of the mother and son along with collected texts and images. It explores how we document experiences through the journey of this family going on a summer road trip across America.

An Orchestra of Minorities

This one might be really hard to for me to read. It a love story set in Nigeria of a poultry farmer who sacrifices everything for a women he loves. Throwing his two prized chickens, (WHO DOES THAT?! a farmer who does not care about his chickens one bit. That’s who.) to stop a women who’s about to jump off the bridge. I’m not okay with that. Yes, might just take this one right off my list.

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Quichotte

This one seems like it’s a story about a quirky MC in the quest for love and family. In as way, could possibly be similar to The Rosie Project (which I loved) as. Sam DuChamp, mediocre spy thriller writer created Quichotte, a saleman obsessed with TV and who falls in love with a TV star. He decided to drive across America to prove he’s worthy for her. While Sam also has equal challenges of his own.

duck, newburyport

I don’t really know how to explain this but I love books that have some focus on food and women stories. They always peak my interest! Following an Ohio house wife and mother who bakes for local restaurants and who wonders how to exist in a world like today.

girl, woman, other

Focusing on the lives of 12 people, mostly women to what it means to be black and British. Celebrating womanhood across generations with snapshots through the streets of London. Telling the stories of their families, friends and lovers.

10 minutes 38 seconds in this strange world

This sounds so interesting! “An intensely powerful new novel from the best-selling author of The Bastard of Istanbul and Honour” and intense it does sound! Following Leila’s death each minute brings a sensuous memory and with each memory she recalls the friends she has made at key points in her life. The same ones who are desperately trying to find her.

the wall

Here’s another sci-fi. This one, in a way, maybe hitting too close to home right now about an island nation that has built an enormous concrete wall around its entire boarder. With the sea rising Joseph Kavanagh, a defender, wants to protect the wall from the desperate people on the other side. About rising political division, rising water and fear, and a suspensful story of love, trust and survival.