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Judging panel announced for 2009 Man Booker Prize for Fiction

Judging panel announced for 2009 Man Booker Prize for Fiction

'A team of all the talents’ to judge prize

2009 judges The judging panel for the 2009 Man Booker Prize for Fiction is announced today, 17 December 2008.  The line-up consists of Lucasta Miller, biographer and critic; Michael Prodger, Literary Editor of The Sunday Telegraph; John Mullan, academic, journalist and broadcaster and Sue Perkins, comedian and broadcaster.  James Naughtie, one of the country's best-known broadcasters, was announced as Chair of the Judges in November.

Ion Trewin, Literary Director of the Man Booker Prize for Fiction, describes the 2009 Judging panel as: ‘A team of all the talents, wide-ranging in their specialist knowledge, but united in their passion for fiction.'

The 2008 winner, The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga, a first novel, ‘shocked and entertained in equal measure', said the judges.  It has since gone on to sell over 285,000 copies in the UK and has now been sold to publishers for translation in at least 26 other countries.

The longlist, ‘The Booker Dozen' - the 12 (or 13) titles under serious consideration for the prize - will be announced in early August. The shortlist of six books will be announced in early September.  The Man Booker Prize 2009 winner will be televised live on the BBC Ten O'Clock News at Guildhall at an awards ceremony on Tuesday 6th October 2009. 

The Judges

The 2009 Man Booker Prize for Fiction

Judges' biographical details

James Naughtie- Chair of Judges

James Naughtie is one of the country's best-known broadcasters. During his career, Naughtie has anchored BBC radio coverage of British and American presidential elections and has written and introduced numerous documentaries and programmes for BBC Radio and television.  As an author, he has written two books on contemporary politics, The Rivals - The Story of a Political Marriage, and The Accidental American - Tony Blair and the Presidency.  His book, The Making of Music, based on his Radio 4 series, an account of the Western classical tradition, was published in paperback this year. Naughtie is connected with a number of arts organisations and charities, is a member of the advisory board of the Edinburgh International Festival, a patron of the Prince of Wales Foundation for Children and the Arts, a trustee of the Classical Opera Company, a trustee of the Art Fund Prize for museums and galleries and a patron of Southbank Sinfonia. In 2008 he was appointed Chancellor of the University of Stirling.  He is also a former chairman of judges of the BBC FOUR Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-fiction.

Lucasta Miller

Lucasta Miller is best known as the author of The Bronte Myth and has worked for many years as a critic, most recently for The Guardian Review. She is now writing a second book, Bluestockings and Cads: Four Stories of Biography and Scandal, which will be published by Jonathan Cape in 2010. She is married to the tenor Ian Bostridge and has two children.

Michael Prodger

Michael Prodger has been a literary journalist for many years and is Literary Editor of The Sunday Telegraph. He also writes regularly on art for a number of publications, including The Sunday Telegraph, Standpoint and The Spectator. He was a judge on the BBC FOUR Samuel Johnson Prize in 2006.

John Mullan

John Mullan is Professor of English at University College London. He is the author of Anonymity. A Secret History of English Literature (Faber) and How Novels Work (Oxford University Press). He has published widely on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century literature. He is also a broadcaster and journalist, writing a regular column on contemporary fiction for The Guardian. He was a judge for Best of the Booker in 2008.

Sue Perkins

Sue Perkins is a comedian, presenter, broadcaster and scriptwriter.  She regularly appears on radio and television programmes such as Newsnight ReviewHave I Got News For You, Just a Minute and The News Quiz.  Sue is currently filming the second series of the critically acclaimed BBC2 show, The Supersizers Go, where she eats offal and cow brains in restrictive corsetry.  In September, Sue won the BBC Maestro competition, thereby getting the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to conduct at the Last Night of the Proms in Hyde Park in front of 40,000 people. 

- ends -

Notes to Editors:

The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga (Atlantic Books) won the Man Booker Prize 2008


Photographs of all the judges are available from Colman Getty


The Booker Prize for Fiction was first awarded in 1969, and Man Group plc was announced as the sponsor of the prize in April 2002, with a five year extension agreed in 2006. For a full history of the prize including previous winners, shortlisted authors and judges visit the website: It is a major media and information tool which is accessed worldwide with up to the minute information about both the annual Man Booker Prize and the biennial man Booker International Prize. Featuring news, interviews and written pieces as well as a lively forum and full history archive of the prize, the site is used by journalists, bloggers and general members of the public on a daily basis.


The Advisory Committee, which advises on any changes to the rules and on the selection of the judges, represents all sides of the book world. Its members are: Ion Trewin, Chair (Literary Director, Man Booker Prizes); Richard Cable, publisher; Mark Chilton, Company Secretary, Booker Ltd; Peter Clarke, Chief Executive, Man Group plc; Jonathan Douglas, Director of the National Literacy Trust; Victoria Glendinning, writer; Basil Comely, BBC TV; Derek Johns, literary agent; Gerry Johnson, Managing Director, Waterstone's; Nigel Newton, publisher; Fiammetta Rocco, literary editor, The Economist (Man Booker International Prize administrator); Eve Smith (Company Secretary, the Booker Prize Foundation); Robert Topping; Topping & Company Booksellers and Erica Wagner, literary editor, The Times.


The Booker Prize Foundation is a registered charity (no 1090049) which, since 2002, has been responsible for the award of the prize. The trustees of the Booker Prize Foundation are former Chairman of Booker plc, Jonathan Taylor CBE (Chair); Lord Baker of Dorking CH; playwright and President of the Royal Literary Fund, Ronald Harwood CBE; former Chair of the British Council, Baroness Kennedy QC; writer, Baroness Neuberger DBE; MEP Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne; and former Finance Director of Rentokil plc, Christopher Pearce. Martyn Goff CBE, former Man Booker Prize administrator, has recently been appointed President of the Foundation.


Man Group plc has sponsored the Man Booker Prize since 2002 and is this year celebrating its own notable anniversary - its 225th.


Man is a world-leading alternative investment management business. With a broad range of funds for institutional and private investors globally, it is known for its performance, innovative product design and investor service. Man manages around USD61 billion* and employs 1,800 people in 13 countries worldwide.

The original business was founded in 1783. Today, Man Group plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is ranked in the top 50 companies of the FTSE 100 index, with a market capitalisation of around USD6.5 billion.  Man Group is also a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index and the FTSE4Good Index

Man Group is also a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index and the FTSE4Good Index

Man supports many awards, charities and initiatives around the world, including sponsorship of the Man Booker literary prizes and the Man Group International Climate Change Award. In the year to March 2008 the Man Group plc Charitable Trust gave 12% of its $12m charitable budget to charities concerned with improving literacy. A major contribution in the literacy category was a £1m pledge to the ‘Every Child a Reader' reading recovery programme spread over three years from 2006. Other sizeable donations were made to Dyslexia Action and Kids Company Reading Recovery Teachers, whilst smaller contributions were made to Write to Life, Bookaid International, Volunteer Reading Help, The Shannon Trust, RNIB Talking Books and St. Petrock's (Exeter). Further information can be found at

* Estimated at the beginning of November 2008

Booker is the UK's leading food wholesaler with over 170 branches nationwide. It serves over 350,000 independent businesses.


The Booker Prize Archive was given on loan in 2003 to Oxford Brookes University where it now resides.


Each year The Booker Prize Foundationpays forthe production ofthe Man Booker Prize for Fiction shortlisted titles in Braille, Giant Print and Audio formats by the Royal National Institute for Blind People (RNIB). The Foundation is also working with the Sound Archive of the British Library onits 'National Life Stories - Authors' Lives' project by funding archive interviews withshortlisted authors.


For up to date information and photographs of the judging panel,

please visit

or contact Lucy Chavasse at Colman Getty

on 020 7631 2666 or