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2016 Man Booker Prizewinner

Paul Beatty’s The Sellout is the first novel by an American writer to win the prestigious Man Booker prize, which is awarded annually to the book judged to be the best novel published in English in the UK in a given year. Eligibility was originally restricted to citizens of the UK or the British Commonwealth, but three years ago this requirement was revised so that authors from anywhere in the world could be considered. Now Beatty has earned the distinction of being the first American writer to capture the coveted prize. (The Sellout also won the 2016 National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction.)

Beatty’s novel is a satirical exploration of the racial issues that continue to trouble American society. It has generated some controversy for the way it touches on topics from American history such as slavery and segregation. Check it out, as well as some of the other books that made the shortlist and longlist for the Man Booker, from Richland Library’s collection.


The Sellout: A Novel by Paul Beatty
Amazon Says: Winner of the 2016 Man Booker PrizeWinner of the 2015 National Book Critics Circle Award in Fiction Named one of the best books of 2015 by The New York T more...
Amazon Says: Winner of the 2016 Man Booker PrizeWinner of the 2015 National Book Critics Circle Award in Fiction Named one of the best books of 2015 by The New York Times Book Review and the Wall Street JournalA biting satire about a young man's isolated upbringing and the race trial that sends him to the Supreme Court, Paul Beatty's The Sellout showcases a comic genius at the top of his game. It challenges the sacred tenets of the United States Constitution, urban life, the civil rights movement, the father-son relationship, and the holy grail of racial equality―the black Chinese restaurant.Born in the "agrarian ghetto" of Dickens―on the southern outskirts of Los Angeles―the narrator of The Sellout resigns himself to the fate of lower-middle-class Californians: "I'd die in the same bedroom I'd grown up in, looking up at the cracks in the stucco ceiling that've been there since '68 quake." Raised by a single father, a controversial sociologist, he spent his childhood as the subject in racially charged psychological studies. He is led to believe that his father's pioneering work will result in a memoir that will solve his family's financial woes. But when his father is killed in a police shoot-out, he realizes there never was a memoir. All that's left is the bill for a drive-thru funeral.Fuelled by this deceit and the general disrepair of his hometown, the narrator sets out to right another wrong: Dickens has literally been removed from the map to save California from further embarrassment. Enlisting the help of the town's most famous resident―the last surviving Little Rascal, Hominy Jenkins―he initiates the most outrageous action conceivable: reinstating slavery and segregating the local high school, which lands him in the Supreme Court. less...
Amazon

Eileen: A Novel by Ottessa Moshfegh
Amazon Says: Shortlisted for the 2016 Man Booker Prize and chosen by David Sedaris as his recommended book for his Fall 2016 tour.  So here we are. My name was Eil more...
Amazon Says: Shortlisted for the 2016 Man Booker Prize and chosen by David Sedaris as his recommended book for his Fall 2016 tour.  So here we are. My name was Eileen Dunlop. Now you know me. I was twenty-four years old then, and had a job that paid fifty-seven dollars a week as a kind of secretary at a private juvenile correctional facility for teenage boys. I think of it now as what it really was for all intents and purposes—a prison for boys. I will call it Moorehead. Delvin Moorehead was a terrible landlord I had years later, and so to use his name for such a place feels appropriate. In a week, I would run away from home and never go back. This is the story of how I disappeared. The Christmas season offers little cheer for Eileen Dunlop, an unassuming yet disturbed young woman trapped between her role as her alcoholic father’s caretaker in a home whose squalor is the talk of the neighborhood and a day job as a secretary at the boys’ prison, filled with its own quotidian horrors. Consumed by resentment and self-loathing, Eileen tempers her dreary days with perverse fantasies and dreams of escaping to the big city. In the meantime, she fills her nights and weekends with shoplifting, stalking a buff prison guard named Randy, and cleaning up her increasingly deranged father’s messes. When the bright, beautiful, and cheery Rebecca Saint John arrives on the scene as the new counselor at Moorehead, Eileen is enchanted and proves unable to resist what appears at first to be a miraculously budding friendship. In a Hitchcockian twist, her affection for Rebecca ultimately pulls her into complicity in a crime that surpasses her wildest imaginings. Played out against the snowy landscape of coastal New England in the days leading up to Christmas, young Eileen’s story is told from the gimlet-eyed perspective of the now much older narrator. Creepy, mesmerizing, and sublimely funny, in the tradition of Shirley Jackson and early Vladimir Nabokov, this powerful debut novel enthralls and shocks, and introduces one of the most original new voices in contemporary literature. less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE • A simple hospital visit becomes a portal to the tender relationship between mother and daughter more...
Amazon Says: #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE • A simple hospital visit becomes a portal to the tender relationship between mother and daughter in this extraordinary novel by the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Olive Kitteridge and The Burgess Boys. NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The Washington Post • The New York Times Book Review • NPR • BookPage • LibraryReads • Minneapolis Star Tribune • St. Louis Post-Dispatch Look for Elizabeth Strout’s highly anticipated new work of fiction, Anything Is Possible, which is available for pre-order now. Lucy Barton is recovering slowly from what should have been a simple operation. Her mother, to whom she hasn’t spoken for many years, comes to see her. Gentle gossip about people from Lucy’s childhood in Amgash, Illinois, seems to reconnect them, but just below the surface lie the tension and longing that have informed every aspect of Lucy’s life: her escape from her troubled family, her desire to become a writer, her marriage, her love for her two daughters. Knitting this powerful narrative together is the brilliant storytelling voice of Lucy herself: keenly observant, deeply human, and truly unforgettable. Praise for My Name Is Lucy Barton “There is not a scintilla of sentimentality in this exquisite novel. Instead, in its careful words and vibrating silences, My Name Is Lucy Barton offers us a rare wealth of emotion, from darkest suffering to—‘I was so happy. Oh, I was happy’—simple joy.”—Claire Messud, The New York Times Book Review “Spectacular . . . Smart and cagey in every way. It is both a book of withholdings and a book of great openness and wisdom. . . . [Strout] is in supreme and magnificent command of this novel at all times.”—Lily King, The Washington Post   “A short novel about love, particularly the complicated love between mothers and daughters, but also simpler, more sudden bonds . . . It evokes these connections in a style so spare, so pure and so profound the book almost seems to be a kind of scripture or sutra, if a very down-to-earth and unpretentious one.”—Marion Winik, Newsday   “Potent with distilled emotion. Without a hint of self-pity, Strout captures the ache of loneliness we all feel sometimes.”—Time “An aching, illuminating look at mother-daughter devotion.”—People “A quiet, sublimely merciful contemporary novel about love, yearning, and resilience in a family damaged beyond words.”—The Boston Globe “Sensitive, deceptively simple . . . It is Lucy’s gentle honesty, complex relationship with her husband, and nuanced response to her mother’s shortcomings that make this novel so subtly powerful. . . . [It’s] more complex than it first appears, and all the more emotionally persuasive for it.”—San Francisco Chronicle “Strout maps the complex terrain of human relationships by focusing on that which is often unspoken and only implied. . . . A powerful addition to Strout’s body of work.”—The Seattle Times “[Strout] reminds us of the power of our stories—and our ability to transcend our troubled narratives.”—Miami Herald “Magnificent.”—Ann Patchett less...
Amazon

All That Man Is: A Novel by David Szalay
Amazon Says: Finalist for the 2016 Man Booker Prize Winner of the 2016 Paris Review Plimpton Prize for FictionA magnificent and ambitiously conceived portrait of contempo more...
Amazon Says: Finalist for the 2016 Man Booker Prize Winner of the 2016 Paris Review Plimpton Prize for FictionA magnificent and ambitiously conceived portrait of contemporary life, by a genius of realism Nine men. Each of them at a different stage in life, each of them away from home, and each of them striving--in the suburbs of Prague, in an overdeveloped Alpine village, beside a Belgian motorway, in a dingy Cyprus hotel--to understand what it means to be alive, here and now. Tracing a dramatic arc from the spring of youth to the winter of old age, the ostensibly separate narratives of All That Man Is aggregate into a picture of a single shared existence, a picture that interrogates the state of modern manhood while bringing to life, unforgettably, the physical and emotional terrain of an increasingly globalized Europe. And so these nine lives form an ingenious and new kind of novel, in which David Szalay expertly plots a dark predicament for the twenty-first-century man. Dark and disturbing, but also often wickedly and uproariously comic, All That Man Is is notable for the acute psychological penetration Szalay brings to bear on his characters, from the working-class ex-grunt to the pompous college student, the middle-aged loser to the Russian oligarch. Steadily and mercilessly, as this brilliantly conceived book progresses, the protagonist at the center of each chapter is older than the last one, it gets colder out, and All That Man Is gathers exquisite power. Szalay is a writer of supreme gifts--a master of a new kind of realism that vibrates with detail, intelligence, relevance, and devastating pathos. less...
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