March 30, 2021 2:24:59 pm
The longlist for the 2021 International Booker Prize is finally out. And this year — helmed by judges like writer Aida Edemariam; author Neel Mukherjee; professor Olivette Otele; and poet, George Szirtes — it constitutes an expansive list complete with translations.
They are: I Live in the Slums by Can Xue, translated from Chinese by Karen Gernant & Chen Zeping, At Night All Blood is Black by David Diop, translated from French by Anna Mocschovakis, The Pear Field by Nana Ekvtimishvili, translated from Georgian by Elizabeth Heighway, The Dangers of Smoking in Bed by Mariana Enríquez, translated from Spanish by Megan McDowell, When We Cease to Understand the World by Benjamín Labatut, translated from Spanish by Adrian Nathan West, The Perfect Nine: The Epic Gikuyu and Mumbi by Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, translated from Gikuyu by the author, The Employees by Olga Ravn, translated from Danish by Martin Aitken, Summer Brother by Jaap Robben, translated from Dutch by David Doherty, An Inventory of Losses by Judith Schalansky, translated from German by Jackie Smith, Minor Detail by Adania Shibli, translated from Arabic by Elisabeth Jaquette, In Memory of Memory by Maria Stepanova, translated from Russian by Sasha Dugdale, Wretchedness by Andrzej Tichý, translated from Swedish by Nichola Smalley, The War of the Poor by Éric Vuillard, translated from French by Mark Polizzotti.
— The Booker Prizes (@TheBookerPrizes) March 30, 2021
The panel of judges has been chaired by Lucy Hughes-Hallett. Speaking on the selection, she said, “In a year when we could scarcely leave our own houses, we judges have been crossing continents, transported by our reading. Every book we’ve read is unique. However a theme does emerge – migration, the pain of it, but also the fruitful interconnectedness of the modern world. Not all writers stay in their native countries. Many do, and write wonderful fiction about their hometowns. But our longlist includes a Czech/Polish author’s vision of a drug-fuelled Swedish underworld, a Dutch author from Chile writing in Spanish about German and Danish scientists, and a Senegalese author writing from France about Africans fighting in a European war.”
The shortlist will be announced on April 22, and the winner will be announced on June 2, virtually. Last year, the prize was won by Dutch author Marieke Lucas Rijneveld for their novel The Discomfort of Evening.
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