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Thursday, January 27, 2005

Gratuitous Booker Name Dropping

It was not ten short days ago when I finished reading Nabakov's Butterfly aka Tolkien’s Gown and Other Stories of Great Authors and Rare Books and felt compelled to email Rick Gekoski to say what a fun read it was. He read my brief email and within a matter of minutes responded:

And thank you for a great quote. I love that Ballard, and will use it as if it were my own.

The quote to which he was referring was in my email footer:

JG Ballard, the author of Empire of The Sun and Crash, said that he thought publishers were right to sell their works in any way they could. On the whole publishers do a very good job. Any fool can write a novel but it takes real genius to sell it, he said.

Today, Rick Gekoski was boosted futher into the limelight as he was just named to the judging panel of the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2005. "Chaired by Professor John Sutherland, the strong line-up consists of fiction editor of the Times Literary Supplement, Lindsay Duguid; writer and antiquarian book dealer, Rick Gekoski; novelist, Josephine Hart; and literary editor of The Evening Standard, David Sexton."

I imagine the judges will now be quite busy culling and reading the masses of books and picking their favourites. My 2005 prediction, if you are interested, is that the winner, a male, will be controversial, the ubiquitous British odds makers will be wrong, and that I will probably buy at least one signed first UK edition of the losers on the shortlist and miss out reading the winner's book entirely. Some things never change.


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