Literary Award Longlist is out!

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The International IMPAC Dublin Award Longlist came out this Monday, read on to find out what I think about the Longlist and some of my picks.

Anyone who knows me knows that I don't read many deep and serious fiction books.  I am the despair of my mother and professorial sister.  I don't normally peruse award longlists, not any of the calibre of the IMPAC Dublin Award.  Let's be honest here, the Romance Writers of America Awards or some of the Fantasy or SF awards aren't treated as seriously as many of the more literary awards.  And the IMPAC Dublin Award is pretty serious. 

It's longlist not so much.  The criteria for eligibility is that they must be of high literary merit, nominated in published, in English, in the year before the nomination (so books nominated for the 2012 award, are nominated in 2011 and have to have been published in 2010) and they're nominated by libraries, from around the world.

I love reading through the longlist. What catches my eye is often not what catches other people's eyes and when the annual Fiction Matters book comes out I read it avidly, for me there are often surprises and books that make me want to read them, and I know in my heart of hearts that it's rare that a book that captures my attention will make it to the short-list.

Sometimes the short-list reminds me of books I noted when I saw them and then forgot about.

This year's books that caught my attention on a quick read-through were:

Zoo City Zoo City by Lauren Beukes it's on my TBR mountain.  Recommended by several friends it has me curious.

  

MockingjayMockingjay by Suzanne Collins one I've read.  A cross-over novel this, mostly aimed at the Young Adult audience this has received a lot of attention from adults.  There are plans to Film the series of which this is the last title.

 

The Passage by Justin Cronin sounds like it could be interesting but it also could be more of the same, a novel that is marketed as mainstream and original but is, for a genre reader, a bit humdrum.

  

Book of Lost ThreadsBook of Lost Threads by Tess Evans (not in stock, sorry!) caught my eye with the cover cover featuring wool and the 83-year-old knitter of tea-cosies in the blurb.

 

Several friends have muttered good things about The Dervish House by Ian McDonald and I did read Chaga many years ago and enjoyed it, another one to consider for me.

 

China Miéville's Kraken reminds me that I have a few of his I have to finish on my TBR mountain.  Must get through them before starting on another one.  I also have a nephew who really enjoyed The City and The City and his birthday is coming up soon!  He's another author who has managed to suck me in and make me think about humanity and how the world works.  I've been at a convention where he's spoken and he's an interesting speaker.

 

Under HeavenUnder Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay I've been reading Kay on-and-off for years, he's always engaging but I've found that the stories suck you in and drain you dry, this one has been lurking on my wishlist for a while.

These are what catches my eye on a first look through, undoubtedly I will find more over time, particularly when the annual magazine Fiction Matters comes out in February that lists all the books and has a blurb about them, something I always look forward to.

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