During the year that we've been reading and blogging, there have been a few outstanding books that captured the imagination, made us think about the world with a new perspective, and were beautifully written - such as The Book Thief (Marcus Zusak) and The White Tiger (Aravind Adiga) - inspiring passionate debate and conversation. My new working definition of a 'better' book.
The White Tiger was also a Man Booker Prize Winner, which got me to thinking (a dangerous pasttime, I know) about setting myself a little challenge.
While accepting that there are many great books that never make in onto award lists for a variety of reasons, I happen to have read three Booker winners recently (and a nominee - just in case I decided to expand my focus at a later date) and have been very impressed by the diversity and quality of the works. I'm sure that not every book will be a 'better' one, but I hope that quite a few will surprise me!
So I've decided to try and read the lot over the next few years, aiming for at least one book a month.
Fancy doing the same? Then just tweet me(@LeedsBookClub), drop me an email (LeedsBookClub@gmail.com) or leave a comment at the end of the blog. I don't mind whether we read the same book at the same time (mostly as due to finances, I hope to work through what I have or can borrow from the library or a mate), I more fancy having some company on the way, some one to poke and prod me when I'm feeling lazy.
There are 45 books on the Man Booker list in total, with two years producing joint winners, and as I am not planning on re-reading the books I've just finished, that's 42 books to get through! I'm going to try to read every one, including 9 books that I have already read, as that was quite a while ago.
2008 Aravind Adiga - The White Tiger - June 2010
2009 Hilary Mantel - Wolf Hall - December 2010
2010 Howard Jacobson - The Finkler Question - November 2010
1969 P. H. Newby - Something to Answer For
1970 Bernice Rubens - The Elected Member
1970 J. G. Farrell - Troubles
1971 V. S. Naipaul - In a Free State
1972 John Berger - G.
1973 J. G. Farrell - The Siege of Krishnapur
1974 Nadine Gordimer - The Conservationist
Stanley Middleton - Holiday
1975 Ruth Prawer Jhabvala - Heat and Dust
1976 David Storey - Saville
1977 Paul Scott - Staying On
1978 Iris Murdoch - The Sea, the Sea
1979 Penelope Fitzgerald - Offshore
1980 William Golding - Rites of Passage
1981 Salman Rushdie - Midnight's Children
1982 Thomas Keneally - Schindler's Ark
1983 J. M. Coetzee - Life & Times of Michael K
1984 Anita Brookner - Hotel du Lac
1985 Keri Hulme - The Bone People
1986 Kingsley Amis - The Old Devils
1987 Penelope Lively - Moon Tiger
1988 Peter Carey - Oscar and Lucinda
1989 Kazuo Ishiguro - The Remains of the Day
1990 A. S. Byatt - Possession: A Romance
1991 Ben Okri - The Famished Road
1992 Michael Ondaatje - The English Patient
Barry Unsworth - Sacred Hunger
1993 Roddy Doyle - Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha
1994 James Kelman - How Late It Was, How Late
1995 Pat Barker - The Ghost Road
1996 Graham Swift - Last Orders
1997 Arundhati Roy - The God of Small Things
1998 Ian McEwan - Amsterdam
1999 J. M. Coetzee - Disgrace
2000 Margaret Atwood - The Blind Assassin
2001 Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
2002 Yann Martel - Life of Pi
2003 DBC Pierre - Vernon God Little
2004 Alan Hollinghurst - The Line of Beauty
2005 John Banville - The Sea
2006 Kiran Desai - The Inheritance of Loss
2007 Anne Enright - The Gathering
2008 Aravind Adiga - The White Tiger
2009 Hilary Mantel - Wolf Hall
2010 Howard Jacobson - The Finkler Question