Howard Jacobson takes Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Zoo Time


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The Independent Culture

Howard Jacobson has won the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for the second time.

The author won the comic writing prize for Zoo Time, a novel about a novelist who is distracted from writing by the provocative presence of his highly strung wife and her alluring mother.

Jacobson first won the prize, celebrating books capturing PG Wodehouse’ comic spirit, for The Mighty Waltzer in 2000.

"This is the only literary prize that actively seeks out and rewards comedy," said Jacobson.

"Other prizes often view it as sort of embarrassing writerly malfunction - which is treacherous, in my view, when you consider the comic origins of the novel and the strong comedic traditions of English writing in particular."

As part of his Wodehouse Prize a Gloucestershire Old Spot pig will be named after Zoo Time.

"To win it twice is very heaven. I am only sorry my pig has to be called Zoo Time. It feels a bit tactless. But it could have been worse. It could have been Bring Up The Bodies."

Jacobson, who is also a contributor to The Independent, won the Man Booker prize in 2010 for The Finkler Question.