The Giller Prize Short List

The Scotiabank Giller Awards are this Tuesday November 8th, 2011!! I have been so busy reading all of my amazing Random House books I acquired, that I never read any of the Giller nominations. But I will definitely get to them post-haste! I thought I should alert you to the amazing novels that have been nominated this year.

I am also fortunate enough to be volunteering at the Giller Light, which the the after-party for the Giller Awards. I will be working the drink tickets so come say hi! 🙂

And without further ado here are the nominees:

The Antagonist – Lynn Coady

Hulking misfit and one-time violent offender Gordon (Rank) Rabkin seeks revenge against a former friend who, in Rank’s eyes, defamed him, in a novel based partly on their youthful experiences. The Antagonist eveolves into a tortured autobiography in which the misunderstood hero comes to terms with his past.

Better Living Through Plastic Explosives – Zsuzsi Gartner

Set mainly in a surreal version of modern Vancouver, these 10 stories describe absurdly unnatural events – an angelic intercession into the lives of suburban children; a mountain that swallows houses; eerily prophetic street protests – that illuminate and satirize the obsessions of contemporary society.

The Cat’s Table – Michael Ondaatje

An 11-year-old boy takes a voyage from Sri Lanka to England and a reunion with a mother he hasn’t seen for years. Michael Ondaatje seats his protagonist at the ship’s Cat’s Table for dinners each night, the lowliest place in the social order, but with the most interesting characters. Years later, the narrator looks back on a 21-day voyage that shaped his life.

The Free World – David Bezmozgis

An ironic recasting of Exodus, set in Rome in the summer of 1978. Three generations of the Krasnansky family, having abandoned their old life in Latvia, are stuck in limbo, as they jostle and lobby for entry visas to a new country and a new life. Bezmozgis plunges readers into their lives against the backdrop of a major 20th-century migration.

Half-Blood Blues – Esi Edugyan

The Man Booker-nominated novel Half-Blood Blues features a jazz band in the libertine Berlin of the early 1930s. When Hitler comes to power, jazz becomes decadent and the group, which included blacks, Jews and  “subversives”, take refuge in Paris, arriving just ahead of the invading Germans. Fifty years later, the survivors reunite to compare scars, mostly emotional.

The Sisters Brothers – Patrick deWitt

The Man Booker-nominated novel is about two brothers who are assassins for hire. It follows them as they traverse 1850s California amid rivers of blood aiming to kill an obscure prospector. The plan shifts and fate twists as the brother reach San Francisco and join in on the gold rush.


Source: Globe and Mail


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Filed under Non-Fiction, Side Notes

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