I've set myself a mini-challenge...to read at least one book from each of the Man Booker International Finalists for 2011. The winner will be announced at the Sydney Writers Festival 18 May. The shortlist can be found here.
The Brisbane City Council library has come to my aid with most of the authors. On Thursday night I snavelled up Anne Tyler's the Accidental Tourist and Su Tong's Boat to Redemption.
John Le Carre has pulled out of the running already, saying that prizes aint his thing. That leaves 12 writers in the running for 60k quid - not to be sneezed at.....including our very own David Malouf. Here's a link to a recent ABC Radio interview recorded with the lovely Richard Fidler talking about Happiness. He would be happy if he won the prize, yes? I've just realised I still haven't read Ransom ...I've only read Johnno...oops...better get onto that quick smart.
Anyway, today I finished Anne Tyler's the Accidental Tourist which was great - easy to read and laugh out loud funny. Nick Hornby endorses it which is probably a good thing but I still haven't read Nick Hornby...sigh...so much to read...so little time.
Anne Tyler has written heaps - Digging to America was one of those ones I meant to read last year, but never got round to doing so. It was shortlisted for the Orange Prize in 2007.
Anne has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize a couple of times including for the Accidental Tourist and won it in 1989 for Breathing Lessons. Yes, Accidental Tourist was made into a movie starring William Hurt and Geena Davis but I haven't seen it...I think. Has anyone else? Was it good? I think it would make a great movie.
Here's a nice bio of her in the Guardian. I will definitely be reading more of her stuff.
I particularly liked how the dog was such a big character in the book. We humans are often defined by our pets I think and they deserve more recognition in our fiction. So there.