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The 2010 Man Booker Prize for Fiction Shortlist announced

The 2010 Man Booker Prize for Fiction Shortlist announced

Truly Commonwealth list with authors from Australia, South Africa, Britain and Ireland

Peter Carey, Emma Donoghue, Damon Galgut, Howard Jacobson, Andrea Levy and Tom McCarthy are today, Tuesday 7 September, announced as the six shortlisted authors for the 2010 Man Booker Prize for Fiction. For over four decades the prize - the leading literary award in the English speaking world - has brought recognition, reward and readership to the outstanding new novels of the year. The shortlist was announced by Chair of judges, Sir Andrew Motion, at a press conference held at Man's London headquarters.

The six books, selected from the Man Booker Prize longlist of 13, are as follows:

Peter Carey Parrot and Olivier in America (Faber and Faber)

Emma Donoghue Room (Picador - Pan Macmillan)

Damon Galgut In a Strange Room (Atlantic Books - Grove Atlantic)

Howard Jacobson The Finkler Question (Bloomsbury)

Andrea Levy The Long Song (Headline Review -Headline Publishing Group)

Tom McCarthy C Jonathan Cape - Random House

Chair of judges Andrew Motion, comments:

"It's been a great privilege and an exciting challenge for us to reduce our longlist of thirteen to this shortlist of six outstandingly good novels. In doing so, we feel sure we've chosen books which demonstrate a rich variety of styles and themes - while in every case providing deep individual pleasures."

Australian author Peter Carey is one of only two authors to have won the prize twice, in 1988 for Oscar and Lucinda and in 2001 for True History of the Kelly Gang. Should he win this year, he would become the only author to have won three times. He was also shortlisted in 1985 for Illywhacker. South African author Damon Galgut has previously been shortlisted for his book The Good Doctor in 2003 and Howard Jacobson has been longlisted twice before for his novels Kalooki Nights in 2006 and Who's Sorry Now? in 2002. Irish author Emma Donoghue is, at 40, the youngest author on the shortlist.

The winner of the 2010 Man Booker Prize for Fiction will be announced on Tuesday 12 October at a dinner at London's Guildhall. The announcement will be broadcast on BBC News across television, radio and online.

The winner will receive a cheque for £50,000 and worldwide recognition. Last year's winning novel, Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, has now sold over half a million copies in the UK alone. Each of the six shortlisted authors, including the winner, receives £2,500 and a designer bound edition of their shortlisted book.

Chaired by Andrew Motion, former Poet Laureate, the 2010 judges are Rosie Blau, Literary Editor of the Financial Times; Deborah Bull, formerly a dancer, now Creative Director of the Royal Opera House as well as a writer and broadcaster; Tom Sutcliffe, journalist, broadcaster and author and Frances Wilson, biographer and critic.

On Sunday 10 October, two days before the winner is announced, the shortlisted authors will appear at Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall. It is the only public opportunity to join the 2010 shortlisted authors for readings from their books, discussion and an audience Q&A.

In addition, the Man Booker Prize has teamed up with the Victoria and Albert Museum and the London based private members' club The Groucho Club, who will both host events with some of the shortlisted authors for their members.

Last month the prize announced exciting new digital plans for 2010. The Man Booker Prize App is now free to download from the App Store to an Apple iPhone or iPod Touch and is the UK's first app for a literary prize. The prize has also partnered with the digital book retailer GoSpoken and free audio extracts from all the 13 longlisted titles can be downloaded to subscribers' mobiles.

For further information about the prize please visit or follow the prize on Twitter at

For all press enquiries please contact

Jill Cotton or Lucy Chavasse at

Colman Getty, 28 Windmill Street, London W1T 2JJ

Tel: 020 7631 2666

E-mail: or

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The Shortlisted Books

Parrot and Olivier in America

By Peter Carey

Published by Faber and Faber, at £18.99

Parrot and Olivier in America is an improvisation on the life of Alexis de Tocqueville, and an irrepressibly funny portrait of the impossible friendship between master and servant.

Olivier is a French assistant, the traumatised child of survivors of the Revolution; Parrot the son of an itinerant English printer who always wanted to be an artist but has ended up a servant. Born on different sides of history, their lives will be joined by their travels in America. When Olivier sets sail for the New World - ostensibly to study its prisons but in reality to save his neck from one more revolution - Parrot is sent with him, as spy, protector, foe and foil. As the narrative shifts between the perspectives of Parrot and Olivier, and their picaresque travels together and apart - in love and politics, prisons and the world of art - Peter Carey explores the adventure of American democracy, in theory and in practice, with dazzling wit and inventiveness.

Peter Carey was born in Australia in 1943. He is the author of 11 novels. He won the Booker Prize in 1988 for Oscar and Lucinda (which has since been made into a film starring Ralph Fiennes) and again in 2001 for True History of the Kelly Gang. He was shortlisted in 1985 for Illywhacker. His other novels include The Unusual Life of Tristan Smith and Jack Maggs (winner of the 1998 Commonwealth Writers' Prize). He has also written a collection of short stories, The Fat Man in History, and a book for children, The Big Bazoohley. He has lived in New York City for twenty years.

For further information please contact Anna Pallai at Faber and Faber

Tel: 020 7927 3884, email:, mob: 07971 496 227


By Emma Donoghue

Published by Picador, Pan Macmillan, at £12.99

Jack is five, and excited about his birthday. He lives with his Ma in Room, which has a locked door and a skylight, and measures eleven feet by eleven feet. He loves watching TV, and the cartoon characters he calls friends, but he knows that nothing he sees on screen in truly real - only him, Ma and the things in Room. Until the day Ma admits that there's a world outside...

Told in Jack's voice, Room is the story of a mother and son whose love lets them survive the impossible. Unsentimental and sometimes funny, devastating yet uplifting, Room is a novel like no other.

Emma Donoghue was born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1969. She received a first-class honours BA in English and French from University College Dublin before moving to England and, in 1997, received a PhD from the University of Cambridge. From the age of 23, Emma has followed a career as a writer. Her novels include Room, The Sealed Letter, Landing Touchy Subjects, Life Mask, The Woman Who Gave Birth to Rabbits, Slammerkin, Kissing the Witch, Hood and Stirfry. Her non-fiction books include Inseparable, We are Michael Field, Poems Between Women and Passions Between Women. She lives in Canada with her partner and two children.

For further information please contact Emma Bravo at Picador

Tel: 020 7014 6184, email:, mob: 07739 334 561

In a Strange Room

Damon Galgut

Published by Atlantic Books, Grove Atlantic, at £15.99

A young man makes three journeys that take him through Greece, India and Africa. He travels lightly, simply. To those who travel with him and those whom he meets on the way - including a handsome, enigmatic stranger, a group of careless backpackers and a woman on the edge - he is the Follower, the Lover and the Guardian. Yet, despite the man's best intentions, each journey ends in disaster. Together, these three journeys will change his life.

A novel of longing and thwarted desire, rage and compassion, In a Strange Room is the hauntingly beautiful evocation of one man's search for love and for a place to call home.

Damon Galgut was born in Pretoria in 1963. He wrote his first novel, A Sinless Season, when he was seventeen. His other books include Small Circle of Beings, The Beautiful Screaming of Pigs, The Quarry, The Good Doctor and The Imposter. The Good Doctor was shortlisted the Man Booker Prize in 2003, the Commonwealth Writers' Prize and the Dublin/IMPAC Award. Damon Galgut lives in Cape Town.

For further information please contact Karen Duffy at Atlantic Books

Tel: 020 7269 1621, email:, mob: 07789 688757

The Finkler Question

By Howard Jacobson

Published by Bloomsbury, at £18.99

Funny, furious and unflinching, The Finkler Question is a scorching story of friendship and loss, exclusion and belonging, and of the wisdom and humanity of maturity.

Julian Treslove, a professionally unspectacular former BBC radio producer, and Sam Finkler, a popular Jewish philosopher, writer and television personality, are old school friends. Despite a prickly relationship, they've never quite lost touch with each other - or with their former teacher, Libor Sevick. Both Libor and Sam are recently widowed, and with Treslove, his chequered and unsuccessful record with women rendering him an honorary third widower, they dine at Libor's apartment. It's a sweetly painful evening of reminiscence in which all three remove themselves to a time before they had loved and lost; a time before they had fathered children, before the devastation of separations, before they had prized anything greatly enough to fear the loss of it. Treslove finds he has tears enough for the unbearable sadness of both his friends' losses. That evening, as Treslove, on the way home, hesitates a moment outside the window of the oldest violin dealer in the country, he is attacked. After this, his whole sense of who and what he is will slowly and ineluctably change.

An award-winning novelist and critic, Howard Jacobson was born in Manchester in 1942 and read English at Cambridge under F.R. Leavis. He taught at the University of Sydney, Selwyn College, Cambridge and Wolverhampton Polytechnic - the inspiration for his first novel, Coming From Behind. He has been longlisted twice for the Booker Prize for Kalooki Nights in 2006 and Who's Sorry Now? in 2002. Other novels include The Mighty Walzer and, most recently, The Act of Love. Howard Jacobson writes a weekly column for the Independent and has written and presented several documentaries for television. He lives in London.

For further information please contact Anya Rosenberg at Bloomsbury

Tel: 020 7494 6008, email:, mob: 07540 838 369

The Long Song

By Andrea Levy

Published by Headline Review, Headline Publishing Group, at £18.99

Set in Jamaica during the last years of slavery and the early years of freedom that followed, The Long Song tells the story of July, a slave girl born on the Amity Sugar Plantation in the nineteenth century. July is the child of the Scottish overseer Tam Dewar and Kitty, one of the slaves on the plantation. Favoured for her pale skin early on in life, July is selected by the white mistress Caroline Mortimer to live with her in the house as a lady's maid. Separated from her mother, July finds her place amongst the other slaves in the house and learns the ways to make this life of captivity tolerable. The story is told entirely by an old Jamaican woman, who the reader later learns is July, speaking to her son, the publisher of this book. Despite being set against the backdrop of one of the darkest periods in history, Levy injects the narrative with humour and poeticism.

Andrea Levy was born in England in 1956 to Jamaican parents who came to Britain in 1948. She has lived all her life in London. She has written four previous novels, Every Light in the House Burnin', Never Far From Nowhere, Fruit of the Lemon and Small Island. Small Island won the Orange Prize, the Orange Prize for Fiction Best of the Best, the Whitbread Best Book Award and the Commonwealth Writer's Prize and appeared as a major two-part drama on BBC One in December 2009.

For further information please contact Mark Hutchinson or Caroline Brown at

Colman Getty on tel: 020 7631 2666, email:;, mob: 07919 902661


By Tom McCarthy

Published by Jonathan Cape, Random House, at £16.99

C follows the short, intense life of Serge Carrefax, a man who surges into the electric modernity of the early twentieth century, transfixed by the technologies that will obliterate him. Born to the sound of one of the very first experimental wireless stations, Serge finds himself steeped in a weird world of transmissions, whose very air seems filled with cryptic and poetic signals of all kinds. When personal loss strikes him in his adolescence, this world takes on a darker and more morbid aspect. What follows is a stunning tour de force in which the eerily idyllic settings of pre-war Europe give way to the exhilarating flight-paths of the frontline aeroplane radio operator, then the prison camps of Germany, the drug-fuelled London of the roaring twenties and, finally the ancient tombs of Egypt. This is a remarkable and imaginative book uncovering the hidden codes and dark rhymes that sustain life.

Tom McCarthy was born in1969 and grew up in London. His creation, in 1999, of the International Necronautical Society (INS) has led to publications, installations and exhibitions in galleries and museums around the world, from Tate Britain and the ICA in London to The Drawing Centre in New York. He regularly writes on literature and art for publications including the New York Times, the London Review of Books and Artforum. He has written two previous novels - Remainder and Men in Space - and one work of non-fiction, Tintin and the Secret of Literature.

For further information please contact Chloe Johnson-Hill at Jonathan Cape

Tel: 020 78408490, email:, mob: 07795 114 722

Notes to Editors:

• The six shortlisted books were chosen from a longlist of 13 books. They were:

Author Title (Publisher)

Peter Carey Parrot and Olivier in America (Faber and Faber)

Emma Donoghue Room (Picador - Pan Macmillan)

Helen Dunmore The Betrayal (Fig Tree - Penguin)

Damon Galgut In a Strange Room (Atlantic Books - Grove Atlantic)

Howard Jacobson The Finkler Question (Bloomsbury)

Andrea Levy The Long Song

(Headline Review - Headline Publishing Group)

Tom McCarthy C (Jonathan Cape - Random House)

David Mitchell The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet

(Sceptre - Hodder & Stoughton)

Lisa Moore February (Chatto & Windus - Random House)

Paul Murray Skippy Dies (Hamish Hamilton - Penguin)

Rose Tremain Trespass (Chatto & Windus - Random House)

Christos Tsiolkas The Slap (Tuskar Rock - Grove Atlantic)

Alan Warner The Stars in the Bright Sky

(Jonathan Cape - Random House)

• 138 books in total, 14 of which were called in by the judges, were considered for the prize.

• For the 2010 Man Booker Prize, UK publishers were eligible to submit two full-length novels published between 1 October 2008 and 30 September 2009 and in addition any title by an author who has previously won the Booker or Man Booker Prize may be submitted. Any book by an author who has been shortlisted within the last ten years is also entitled to automatic entry.

• The Booker Prize for Fiction was first awarded in 1969, and Man 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 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.

• Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (Fourth Estate) won the 2009 Man Booker Prize for Fiction, and has gone on to sell over half a million copies in the UK alone. The paperback topped the mass market fiction bestseller lists within a week of publication - a first for a Man Booker winner.

• The Groucho Club will host a private reading with some of the shortlisted authors on Monday 20 September. For further information about The Groucho Club please visit

• On Sunday 10 October at 7.30pm, the Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall in London will host an evening of readings and discussion with the shortlisted authors. For further information please visit

• 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; Jonathan Douglas, Director of the National Literacy Trust; Maggie Fergusson, writer and Secretary of the Royal Society of Literature; Basil Comely, BBC TV; Derek Johns, literary agent; Peter Kemp, Chief Fiction Reviewer, The Sunday Times; Dominic Myers, Managing Director of Waterstone's; Nigel Newton, publisher; Fiammetta Rocco, literary editor, The Economist (Man Booker International Prize administrator); Eve Smith (Company Secretary, the Booker Prize Foundation); and Robert Topping; Topping & Company Booksellers.

• 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; broadcaster, James Naughtie; biographer, Victoria Glendinning; writer, Baroness Neuberger DBE and former Finance Director of Rentokil plc, Christopher Pearce. Martyn Goff CBE, former Man Booker Prize administrator, is President of the Foundation and Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne is a Vice President.

• The Man Booker Prize is sponsored by Man, 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 $39 billion.

The original business was founded in 1783. Today, Man is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a member of the FTSE 100 Index with a market capitalisation of around £4 billion.

Man is a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index and the FTSE4Good Index. Man also supports many awards, charities and initiatives around the world, including sponsorship of the Man Booker literary prizes.

Further information can be found at

• 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.

• Blind and partially sighted people can now read any of the books shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize on the day the winner is announced. The production of the books in braille and giant print is funded by the Booker Prize Foundation, and the Man Group PLC Charitable Trust pays separately for the production of Talking Books.

• The Foundation is also working with the Sound Archive of the British Library on its 'National Life Stories - Authors' Lives' project by funding archive interviews with shortlisted authors.