Book Reviews

2012 Man Booker Prize Long List Announced

The 12 books long listed for the 2012 Man Booker Prize were announced earlier today. As expected Hilary Mantel is on the list with Bring up the Bodies  and there are a few familiar names. Michael Frayn, Will Self and Andre Brink (who has been shortlisted in previous year). But there were also a  few unknowns for me among the other nominees.

Commenting on the fact that the longlist includes four debut novels, the chairman of the judging panel, said:  “We did not set out to reject the old guard but, after a year of sustained critical argument by a demanding panel of judges, the new has come powering through.” Seems like the judges have worked hard to navigate a middle road between books that the literati consider ‘too popular to be classed as real literature’ and books that many readers would consider too esoteric to be enjoyable.

There’s a good overview of the list over on the Like Fire blogsite

The Longlist

Nicola Barker – The Yips (Fourth Estate)

Ned Beauman – The Teleportation Accident (Sceptre)

Andre Brink – Philida (Harvill Secker)

Tan Twan EngThe Garden of Evening Mists (Myrmidon)

Michael Frayn – Skios (Metropolitan Books)

Rachel Joyce – The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry (Doubleday)

Deborah Levy – Swimming Home (And Other Stories)

Hilary Mantel – Bring Up the Bodies (Fourth Estate)

Alison Moore – The Lighthouse (Salt)

Will Self – Umbrella (Bloomsbury)

Jeet Thayil – Narcopolis (Faber and Faber)

Sam Thompson – Communion Town (Fourth Estate)

The shortlist will be announced on September 11. Already a number of groups are warming up their eyes ready for the challenge of reading all 12 nominees by then. If you’re up for the challenge, you could join one of them at



What do you need to know about me? 1. I'm from Wales which is one of the countries in the UK and must never be confused with England. 2. My life has always revolved around the written and spoken word. I worked as a journalist for nine years then in international corporate communications 3. My tastes in books are eclectic. I love realism and hate science fiction and science fantasy. 4. I am trying to broaden my reading horizons geographically by reading more books in translation

5 thoughts on “2012 Man Booker Prize Long List Announced

  • Pingback: Snapshot of my week « BookerTalk

  • I promised myself I wouldn’t try and read them this year because I have so much else on, but the first thing I did when the list was released (and I spent the entire day checking at five minute intervals to see if it was out!) was drop into Amazon to see if they were available on Kindle. (My sagging bookshelves now feature regularly in horrific avalanche type nightmares.) The only one I’ve read is the Joyce, which I loved, but wouldn’t have pinned as a Booker nominee.

    • I just know I wouldn’t get anywhere near reading at the pace this would require, especially since I haven’t read even one of them yet. So I’ll just take the slow road…
      I know what you mean about waiting for the announcement…..I did the same!

  • I’m already cheering for Rachel Joyce and Deborah Levy for the short list — though I havent read them yet! I’m looking forward to reading both of their books. I have read Mantel’s “Bring Up the Bodies” see review at but I’m not sure I want her to win this time around. She is very astute no doubt but perhaps it is someone else’s turn. cheers.

    • Somehow I don’t think Mantel will win. It’s a fabulous book but probably too similar in style and subject to the earlier one.


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