The Word On: Orange shortlist
Friday 01 May 2009
Shortlists and prizes may indeed be good things, if they raise awareness of books in general (then again, they may not be); but having a women-only prize is an anachronism, plain and simple. You just have to consider the likely reaction to a new prize for male writers only (or should that be 'non-women' writers?) Or how about a literary prize open only to natural blondes?
A quartet of Oranges not bad, but I must come clean about my reading experience with 'The Wilderness' by Samantha Harvey, shortlisted by the judges, but not by me. It's a novel about a man's journey through Alzheimer's, all those memories and identity becoming elusive...I made a promising start, a good 70 pages or so which is usually plenty for a book to become well-established in my mind, and I was certainly eager to carry on. Then life, 'Scottsboro', etc, intervened and when I picked it up again, I just couldn't get back into it. I couldn't for the life of me remember what happened next.
I'm halfway through 'Molly Fox's Birthday'... an absolute delight after some recent disappointments. I did enjoy 'Burnt Shadows' but felt it was slightly let down by a rushed ending.
Music Why this music festival is still the place to spot the next big thing
Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Finland schools: Subjects scrapped and replaced with 'topics' as country reforms its education system
- 2 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 3 #FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
- 4 Scientists have discovered a simple way to cook rice that dramatically cuts the calories
- 5 Zayn Malik quits One Direction: Hundreds of workers request compassionate leave following band member's exit
Jeremy Clarkson to host BBC's Have I Got News For You despite Top Gear exit
Kay Burley 'bias' against Ed Miliband prompts 130 complaints to Ofcom
A historian gave the most British look of despair when someone screwed up Richard III's birthday at his reburial
Zayn Malik already working on solo material, just days after quitting One Direction
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Nigel Farage brands LGBT activists 'filth' and 'scum' and accuses them of scaring away his children after they invade his local pub
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Russia threatens Denmark with nuclear weapons if it tries to join Nato defence shield
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Germanwings plane crash live: Co-pilot Andreas Lubitz wanted to 'do something people would remember him for'