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The_Massive

Know Your Booker!: Richard House’s The Massive (The Kills: Book Two)

The_MassiveSo you think you know everything there is to know about The Massive, the second book in Richard House’s Booker nominated novel The Kills? Test your knowledge against our GoodReads quiz here!

What’s it about?

The Massive is described by the book’s publisher Picador as follows:

Rem Gunnersen needs work. His wife needs a vacation. Cathy won’t get her vacation. Rem’s job will kill him.

Down on his luck and desperate for money, Rem Gunnersen accepts an unusual proposition: to lead a team of seven men to Camp Liberty. A remote military base in the Iraqi desert, it is the place where the detritus of war is incinerated, buried, removed from memory. For a long time the camp has been unmanned. Rem and his men have no idea why they need to be there. Then Stephen Lawrence Sutler arrives.

The Massive is book two of The Kills.

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Sutler

Know Your Booker!: Richard House’s Sutler (The Kills: Book One)

SutlerSo you think you know everything there is to know about Sutler, the first book in Richard House’s Booker nominated novel The Kills? Test your knowledge against our GoodReads quiz here!

What’s it about?

Sutler is described by the book’s publisher Picador as follows:

The digital first publication of Sutler is the start of a groundbreaking collaboration between a writer and publisher.

Listen. There’s a problem and it can’t be solved. You need to disappear.

This is Stephen Lawrence Sutler’s last morning at Camp Liberty, Iraq. In two hours a massive explosion will conceal the theft of $53,000,000. Sutler, shaken by the blast and forced to go the run, is unaware that any money is missing or that he has been set up. His problems are just beginning.

Sutler is book one of The Kills.

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2013 BookerMarks Long List Projections

I would like to take a stab again to guess a few titles that might make the long list.  A compilation of 2013 eligible titles can be found on Goodreads.

First on my list of hopefuls for the longlist would be Kate Atkinson’s Life After Life.  Life After Life has already been short listed for the 2013 Women’s Prize and lost to AM Homes’ May We Be Forgiven. 

The main reason I would like to have it appear on the long list is that I have already finished 25% of it.  Shallow reason, I know, but my reasoning none the less.  So far it is an intriguing read in which 4 of my Goodreads friends have read and rated 4 stars or better.   It is also “leading” the voting on the  Goodreads Man Booker 2013 Eligible list. (more…)

Know Your Booker!: Jeet Thayil’s Narcopolis

NarcopolisSo you think you know everything there is to know about Jeet Thayil’s Booker nominated novel Narcopolis? Test your knowledge against our GoodReads quiz here!

What’s it about?

Narcopolis is described by the book’s publisher Faber and Faber as follows:

Shuklaji Street, in Old Bombay. In Rashid’s opium room the air is thick and potent. A beautiful young woman leans to hold a long-stemmed pipe over a flame, her hair falling across her dark eyes. Around her, men sprawl and mutter in the gloom, each one drifting with his own tide. Here, people say that you introduce only your worst enemy to opium.

Outside, stray dogs lope in packs. Street vendors hustle. Hookers call for custom through the bars of their cages as their pimps slouch in doorways in the half-light. There is an underworld whisper of a new terror: the Pathar Maar, the stone killer, whose victims are the nameless, invisible poor. There are too many of them to count in this broken city.

Narcopolis is a rich, chaotic, hallucinatory dream of a novel that captures the Bombay of the 1970s in all its compelling squalor. With a cast of pimps, pushers, poets, gangsters and eunuchs, it is a journey into a sprawling underworld written in electric and utterly original prose.
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Know Your Booker!: Hilary Mantel’s Bring Up the Bodies

Bring_Up_The_BodiesSo you think you know everything there is to know about Hilary Mantel’s Booker nominated novel Bring Up the Bodies? Test your knowledge against our GoodReads quiz here!

What’s it about?

Bring Up the Bodies is described by the book’s publisher Fourth Estate as follows:

By 1535 Thomas Cromwell, the blacksmith’s son, is far from his humble origins. Chief Minister to Henry VIII, his fortunes have risen with those of Anne Boleyn, Henry’s second wife, for whose sake Henry has broken with Rome and created his own church. But Henry’s actions have forced England into dangerous isolation, and Anne has failed to do what she promised: bear a son to secure the Tudor line. When Henry visits Wolf Hall, Cromwell watches as Henry falls in love with the silent, plain Jane Seymour. The minister sees what is at stake: not just the king’s pleasure, but the safety of the nation. As he eases a way through the sexual politics of the court, its miasma of gossip, he must negotiate a ‘truth’ that will satisfy Henry and secure his own career. But neither minister nor king will emerge undamaged from the bloody theatre of Anne’s final days.

In ‘Bring up the Bodies’, sequel to the Man Booker Prize-winning ‘Wolf Hall’, Hilary Mantel explores one of the most mystifying and frightening episodes in English history: the destruction of Anne Boleyn. This new novel is a speaking picture, an audacious vision of Tudor England that sheds its light on the modern world. It is the work of one of our great writers at the height of her powers.

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Know Your Booker!: Tan Twan Eng’s The Garden of Evening Mists

The_Garden_Of_Evening_MistsSo you think you know everything there is to know about Tan Twan Eng’s Booker nominated novel The Garden of Evening Mists? Test your knowledge against our GoodReads quiz here!

What’s it about?

The Garden of Evening Mists is described by the book’s publisher Myrmidon Books as follows:

Malaya, 1949. After studying law at Cambrige and time spent helping to prosecute Japanese war criminals, Yun Ling Teoh, herself the scarred lone survivor of a brutal Japanese wartime camp, seeks solace among the jungle fringed plantations of Northern Malaya where she grew up as a child. There she discovers Yugiri, the only Japanese garden in Malaya, and its owner and creator, the enigmatic Aritomo, exiled former gardener of the Emperor of Japan.

Despite her hatred of the Japanese, Yun Ling seeks to engage Aritomo to create a garden in Kuala Lumpur, in memory of her sister who died in the camp. Aritomo refuses, but agrees to accept Yun Ling as his apprentice ‘until the monsoon comes.’ Then she can design a garden for herself. As the months pass, Yun Ling finds herself intimately drawn to her sensei and his art while, outside the garden, the threat of murder and kidnapping from the guerrillas of the jungle hinterland increases with each passing day.

But the Garden of Evening Mists is also a place of mystery. Who is Aritomo and how did he come to leave Japan? Why is it that Yun Ling’s friend and host Magnus Praetorius, seems to almost immune from the depredations of the Communists? What is the legend of ‘Yamashita’s Gold’ and does it have any basis in fact? And is the real story of how Yun Ling managed to survive the war perhaps the darkest secret of all?
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