x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 25 November 2017

The Booker Shortlist 2017 - who’ll be on it?

Here are our predictions of who will be on this year's Booker Shortlist 

The book jacket of Kamila Shamsie's Home Fire
The book jacket of Kamila Shamsie's Home Fire

Reservoir 13 by Jon McGregor

A cyclical, rhythmic meditation on the passing of time in one ­English village, which begins with the disappearance of a girl on a moor and layers into something quietly magnificent.

Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

Regarded as one of the most talented writers of his generation, this is Saunders’ first novel – and it’s a brilliantly ­inventive exploration of ­Abraham Lincoln’s grief at the loss of his son.

Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie

If there’s a novel that should be recognised for taking on contemporary concerns, it’s ­Shamsie’s. See interview.

Swing Time by Zadie Smith

It certainly feels like Zadie Smith’s time; ­somehow she’s never been shortlisted and this is probably her best novel yet: chronicling two childhood friends from London whose lives go in wildly different directions.

The Ministry of Utmost Happiness by Arundhati Roy

It might not be quite as good as her Booker Prize-winning God of Small Things but this sprawling, colourful and vivacious novel of life in India is still a wonderful achievement.

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

This remarkable tale of race and ­slavery in America manages to be a fantasy, a thriller and ­historical fiction. The big page-turner in this selection.

The Booker shortlist is announced on Wednesday. The prize is awarded on October 17. www.themanbookerprize.com/fiction

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Read more:

Kamila Shamsie: Tension in Society, family … and faith

Man Booker Prize 2017: A look at the longlisted nominees

Arabic reads you can find in English this autumn

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