For any bookworms and bibliophiles out there, the annual announcement of the Man Booker Prize shortlist is like a second Christmas. It reveals to us the hottest authors of the moment and the best books to read right now, basically shaping our bookshelf of the year ahead.
The 2020 Booker Prize shortlist was revealed earlier this week and is as follows:
- The New Wilderness by Diane Cook
- This Mournable Body by Tsitsi Dangarembga
- Burnt Sugar by Avni Doshi
- The Shadow King by Maaza Mengiste
- Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart
- Real Life by Brandon Taylor
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We are delighted to announce the #2020BookerPrize shortlist. Read more, follow link in bio and click ‘News’ and find a direct link in our story now. Join us tonight at 5pm BST in a virtual celebration of our #shortlist, livestreamed on our Facebook and YouTube channels. #FinestFiction #shortlist #amreading #bookrecommendation #instabooks #bookstagram #igreads #author #fiction #booklovers #DianeCook #TheNewWilderness #TsitsiDangarembga #ThisMournableBody #AvniDoshi #BurntSugar #MaazaMengiste #TheShadowKing #DouglasStuart #ShuggieBain #BrandonTaylor #RealLife @avnidoshi @MaazaMengiste @brandonlgtaylor @douglas_stuart @OneWorldpublications @faberbooks @penguinhamishhamilton @penguinrandomhouse @canongatebooks @dauntbooks @picadorbooks @panmacmillan
The winner will be announced on 17 November, but until then, Amazon has revealed which of these six shortlisted tomes is the online retailer’s bestselling title. To narrow this down, Amazon looked at which work of fiction had the most print sales and eBook downloads within its first two weeks of being published.
So, while we don’t yet know which book will be crowned the winner – and follow in the footsteps of 2019’s joint winners Margaret Atwood’s The Testaments and Bernardine Evaristo’s Girl, Woman, Other – the shortlisted book that is Amazon’s bestselling title is Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart.
Shuggie Bain (which is Stuart’s debut novel, FYI), is set in 1981 Glasgow, where poverty is rife and ‘people watch the lives they had hoped for disappear from view’. Spanning themes of motherhood, familial love, alcoholism, poverty and Thatcherism, this book has been described as ‘a debut novel that reads like a masterpiece (Washington Post)’.
The Booker Prize website says: ‘Laying bare the ruthlessness of poverty, the limits of love, and the hollowness of pride, Shuggie Bain is a blistering and heartbreaking debut, and an exploration of the unsinkable love that only children can have for their damaged parents.’
Simon Johnson, Director of EU Books at Amazon, commented: ‘It is fantastic to see such a diverse set of authors and stories on this year’s shortlist, from tales of female power in the face of adversity and family relationships crippled by illness, through to stories of racism and homophobia at university and climate change.’
We couldn’t agree more.