Sunday Salon – November 23, 2009

November 23, 2009

(photo by riflegunn at Webshots channel)

Autumn has arrived in the mountains. The air is crisp and chilly and leaves pile up in the yard and gutters. The dogs smell of wind, pine and fresh air when they come inside at night. I love this time of year – it makes me start thinking about thick books of intrigue and atmospheric historical novels…the kinds of books perfect for curling up with in front of the woodstove while the wind blows hard around the eaves. Do you find yourself choosing a specific type of book at certain times of the year?

Since my last Salon post, I find myself still enchanted by Margaret Atwood’s Robber Bride. Her rich prose and stunning characters make this one of her more dark and mysterious books. What a gift Atwood possesses! I’ll be finishing this book sometime in the next day or so (if I did not have to go into work this afternoon, I would certainly be done by this evening). And then I am thinking of picking up Michelle Moran’s novel Nefertiti. I also should read Midnight’s Children, by Salmon Rushdie – but I’m not in the mood for anything too cerebral at the moment.

Speaking of cerebral, many of the prize lists are now appearing for 2008. The National Book Award announced its winner and shortlist. I have not read any of them!

The International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award panel announced its long list. I’m happy to say I’ve read several from that list (follow links to my reviews) including: The Outlander by Gil Adamson, The Gathering by Anne Enright, The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Moshin Hamid, A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khalid Hosseini, On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan, and After Dark by Haruki Murakami.

The Costa Award shortlists are also out. I was happy to see both Poppy Adams and Sadie Jones make the First Novel Award shortlist.

On November 11th, the Giller Prize announced Joseph Boyden the 2008 winner for his book Black Spruce.

And finally, the Booker Prize winner was revealed in October: Aravind Adiga for his book The White Tiger.

So, do you follow the prize lists? Do you have any which are your favorites or from which you always read?

Have a wonderful Sunday, readers! Hope this day finds you enthralled by a good book!

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    • Kathy on November 23, 2008 at 10:26

    I usually look at the prize lists, but don’t run right out and buy the books that win.

    • Vasilly on November 23, 2008 at 10:36

    Happy Sunday, Wendy! I often look at the Booker Prize, Impac Dublin, and Commonwealth. But today you make me want to go and visit all the prize sites.

    • Alyce on November 23, 2008 at 10:54

    I like looking at the prize lists to learn about new books. Very rarely have I actually read something that has won a prize.

    • Andi on November 23, 2008 at 11:07

    I always do a little dance when someone loves The Robber Bride. It’s my favorite Atwood so far, and I’m far overdue for a re-read. Enjoy finishing up!

  1. I don’t follow any of the award lists but I do like seeing which books won. If I start reading good reviews of them from other book bloggers then I usually pick them up. Have a great week of reading!

    • Wendy on November 23, 2008 at 18:48

    Kathy: I don’t always read them all (or buy them all) either, but I am always interested in who is short listed or wins.

    Vasily: Thank you 🙂 They are fun to browse!

    Alyce: I’ve been reading more of them lately because of the perpetual challenges I’ve joined…and many are worth the read; although some are not!

    Andi: *laughs* I am so far putting it at the top of my Atwood list…I should finish it tomorrow.

    Samantha: Thanks! I sometimes wait to see what the reviews are before picking them up too 🙂

  2. Orange, Orange, Orange!

    I’m also noticing that I like the books that have won the Costa, so I’ll be keeping an eye on that one.

    Thanks for all the links, Wendy.

    • 3m on November 24, 2008 at 03:48

    I was extremely happy to see The Behaviour of Moths get shortlisted!

    • JoAnn on November 24, 2008 at 05:17

    I love to follow the prize lists and add many to my mental tbr list – yesterday I requested Shadow Country from the library. This time of year gets me thinking about long family saga-type books. A few years ago, I got through The Forsyte Saga during a week long snow storm. The Robber Bride is a great book – enjoy!!

    • Arial on November 24, 2008 at 10:13

    Yes, I usually follow the prize lists, and I often read the winner of the National Book Award and the Booker. Thanks for mentioning The Robber Bride. It’s one of Atwood’s books that I haven’t read yet. I’ll add it to the list!

    • Amy on November 24, 2008 at 14:47

    Thank you for your insightful comments on THE GATHERING, here and elsewhere. It might interest you to know that we have published several other books by her, the most recent being YESTERDAY’S WEATHER, just out in hardcover. You can find more info on our website.

    Thanks again for reading!

  3. I wish it were Autumn hat was arriving here in the UK. We are now definitely in the middle of winter, even though the season doesn’t officially start for another month. Thanks for the info on the prize winners. I must check out some of those short lists and see what I can lay in for the long and cold nights that are definitely looming ahead.

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