Well, can I judge a book by it's blurb to be exact. I thought that whilst I'm busy waiting for my lovely parcels of books to arrive I'd have a go at guessing which books from the Orange Prize Longlist I'm going to like the best. All I have to go on is the blurb on the back of the book.
So I'm going to take a stab at predicting my favourites and will update this list as I get through the books. It'll be a test of my abilities to sniff out a great book, and how effective publishers are at writing decent marketing spiel. Here goes;
1. Elif Shafak - The Bastard of Istanbul
2. Lauren Liebenberg - The Voluptuous Delights of Peanut Butter and Jam
3. Dalia Sofer - The Septembers of Shiraz
4. Gail Jones - Sorry
5. Anne Enright - The Gathering
6. Linda Grant - The Clothes on Their Backs
7. Heather O'Neill - Lullabies for Little Criminals
8. Anita Amirrezvani - The Blood of Flowers
9. Nancy Huston - Fault Lines
10. Deborah Moggach - In The Dark
11. Rose Tremain - The Road Home
12. Patricia Wood - Lottery
13. Charlotte Mendelson - When We Were Bad
14. Carol Topolski - Monster Love
15. Anita Nair - Mistress
16. Stella Duffy - The Room of Lost Things
17. Sadie Jones - The Outcast
18. Jennifer Egan - The Keep
19. Scarlett Thomas - The End of Mr. Y
20. Tessa Hadley - The Master Bedroom
So what has informed my choices? Basically I'm a sucker for translated novels and stories of far away lands, so African/Australian/Asian authors typically do well with me (just look at my top 4). Plus I can't bear books end up just being about someone having a mid-life crisis and trying to get their leg over (Master Bedroom).
Time will tell whether I have been shrewd or just a snob.