37 Thoughts on Buying the Booker Prize Longlist


  1. Well, that list actually looks pretty good. Wonder whether I could read the whole thing before they announce the shortlist.
  2. You know what? What the hell. It’s payday. Let’s go to Waterstones.
  3. OK, here we go. There’s Kazuo Ishigur…Oh. Not on there. Hmm, that’s bold.
  4. (I mean, I haven’t actually read The Buried Giant yet. But still, bold not to at least give it a nod on the longlist.)
  5. No Salman Rushdie, either. Or Kate Atkinson.
  6. Wow. These books must be really good.
  7. Why are none of them out in paperback, though?
  8. I mean seriously, the only one out in paperback is Marlon James.
  9. (Well done, Mr James.)
  10. This is going to be reeeaaallllly expensive.
  11. (I wish I got along better with my Kindle.)
  12. Also, I think lugging 12 hardbacks and one paperback all the way to the car counts as cardio.
  13. Oh. Make that 4 hardbacks, because the others either haven’t been published yet or aren’t in stock.
  14. That’s OK, I can go to the other Waterstones tomorrow.
  15. OMG OMG OMG, Simon Mawer has written a sequel to The Girl Who Fell From The Sky.
  16. OK, make that five hardbacks.
  17. Also I’m totally reading Tightrope first, before I start anything else.
  18. (At the Other Waterstones) Ooh, half price Lila. Brilliant.
  19. That means I can buy Wolf Border too, because that’s also supposed to be amazing. BUT, I won’t read it until after the longlist. Definitely.
  20. There may be something actually wrong with me. No doubt my bank manager would agree.
  21. OK, that’s all of them, except for Sleeping on Jupiter which seems to be out of stock everywhere, even Amazon. Guess I’ll cave and buy that one on my Kindle.
  22. (Obsessive collector thought: I could buy it in hardback too, when it’s back in stock, and noone would know.)
  23. And except for The Moor’s Account and Did You Ever Have A Family, because they’re not published yet.
  24. Why do they do that? Wouldn’t it be better to change the publication date criteria, or the announcement date, to capitalise on the extra publicity?
  25. Oh well, I probably won’t get through all of the other 11 by the time they’re published anyway, so it really doesn’t matter.
  26. Mwahahahahahahahaha, Amazon, I have tricked you into dispatching The Moor’s Account to me before its UK publication date, mahahahahahahahahahahaha.
  27. Suckers.
  28. Did You Ever Have A Family is now playing, in my head, to the tune of Do You Want To Know A Secret?
  29. That’s unfortunate.
  30. Also, should Did You Ever Have A Family have a question mark at the end? It doesn’t seem to on the Booker website, or on the picture of the dust jacket on Amazon.
  31. Well, that’s going to bug me.
  32. Mmm, that is one fine-looking book stack.
  33. Man, I really don’t have room in my house for all these books.
  34. Ha, like that’s ever stopped me before.
  35. OK, stop looking at the book stack and start reading.
  36. But where to start? So many possibilities…
  37. I wonder whether I can take the week off work?

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