From Short List to Reading List

Two literary prize short lists were announced this past week from Asia and the Middle East.

The Man Asian prize judges apparently had such a wealth of literary options, they expanded this year’s short list from five to seven nominees:

The Wandering Falcon by Jamil Ahmad (Pakistan)
Rebirth by Jahnavi Barua (India)
The Sly Company of People Who Care by Rahul Bhattacharya (India)
River of Smoke by Amitav Ghosh (India)
Please Look After Mom by Kyung-sook Shin (South Korea)
Dream of Ding Village by Yan Lianke (China)
The Lake by Banana Yoshimoto (Japan)

So far, I’ve been able to read The Sly Company of People Who Care and 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami (which was on the long list), and am looking forward to Please Look After Mom, River of Smoke and The Lake.

The Man Asian Literary Prize website includes plot recaps and author bios for each of the seven honorees, as well as videos and other details of the selection. The winner will be announced in March.

Enjoying its 5th anniversary this year,  the International Prize for Arabic Fiction judges announced their short list this week:

The Vagrant by Jabbour Douaihy (Lebanon)
Embrace on Brooklyn Bridge by Ezzedine Choukri Fishere (Egypt)
The Druze of Belgrade by Rabee Jaber (Lebanon)
The Unemployed by Nasser Iraq (Egypt)
Toy of Fire by Bashir Mufti (Algeria)
The Women of al-Basatin by Habib Selmi (Tunisia)

Every single one of these books sounds fascinating, so I’m going to add as many as I can find to my reading challenge this year.

The International Prize for Arabic Fiction website showcases plot summaries and bios of each author. The finalist for this prize also will be announced in March.