The Orange Prize Shortlist 2010…

…Well it hasn’t been announced yet but I think it’s probably going to be the thing everyone is talking about today so I thought I would do a quick post on it (a non Orange related post is coming later, if it hasn’t already – I am doing this before the shortlist is announced purposefully) and as I love a good guessing game I thought I would give you the Savidge Reads guess of the short list.

I think that it will be/would like it to be…

  • Andrea Levy – The Long Song (Headline Review)
  • Attica Locke – Black Water Rising (Serpent’s Tail)
  • Hilary Mantel – Wolf Hall (Fourth Estate)*
  • Kathryn Stockett – The Help (Fig Tree)
  • Lorrie Moore – A Gate at the Stairs (Faber and Faber)
  • M.J. Hyland – This is How (Canongate)

I am sure I will be miles off the mark but there we go! I am wondering if I should have stopped one of the top two with Amanda Craig? Oh I could chop and change forever couldn’t I? I will update the post with what actually makes the cut after its announced at 9.30am!


So here are the actual shortlist contenders…

  • Attica Locke – Black Water Rising (Serpent’s Tail)
  • Barbara Kingsolver – The Lacuna (Faber and Faber)
  • Hilary Mantel – Wolf Hall (Fourth Estate)
  • Lorrie Moore – A Gate at the Stairs (Faber and Faber)
  • Monique Roffey – The White Woman on the Green Bicycle (Simon and Schuster)
  • Rosie Alison – The Very Thought of You (Alma Books)

Three out of six isn’t bad though it shows I know nothing, which I was already quite certain of, as I have read two of the books, though not written on here about them yet (my new rule of letting books sit with me somewhat before I post – I also noticed I still haven’t put my thoughts of some of the Man Booker long list from last year up!!!) that made the short list so you will see my thoughts on those in the next few days/weeks when I have digested them all. Well apart from the one I wasn’t a fan of. What do you all make of the list? Are you thrilled, annoyed or not bothered?


Filed under Book Thoughts, Orange Prize

30 responses to “The Orange Prize Shortlist 2010…

  1. Love when people are willing to go out on a limb like you here to make those predictions. Some pretty sound predictions you make too. Been waiting to start reading until the short list comes out as this makes the whole thing a bit more manageable. I’m such a cheater!

    Looking good around here! Cleaner. Lighter. Sleeker. Good going!

    • It is indeed out on a limb, I had read 8 of the long list (though still haven’t blogged about them all) and so I wasn’t the best informed but it was the books I was most keen on seeing on there because I had read them or wanted to. I am quite liking The Lacuna though I have to say.

  2. lizzysiddal

    My shortlist would be:
    Wolf Hall, The Lacuna, The Still Point, The Help, The White Woman on the Green Bicycle and Hearts and Minds. The latter because it’s stunning and the rest because I want to read them most.

  3. Dabarai

    Ok, I agree with you on Long Song, The Help and The Wolf Hall, other titles… Black Mamba Boy? Hearts and Minds? Small Wars? I want Roopa Farooki’s The Way Things Look to Me to be on that list, but don’t really believe that will happen…!

  4. I thought you weren’t reading/hadn’t read the Orange books! No disrespect but how can you really predict without reading them? Even though I’ve read 13 of the list, I would not really want to predict on that basis.

    • I don’t think it’s necessary to have read all the books to predict a shortlist. It’s a piece of fun. It can never be an exact science as the reading tastes of the real judging panel are unknown. Hence I based “my” shortlist on the books I most want to read which is, to some extent, informed by the book reviews (yours included). I was 50% accurate – and I’m quite happy with that.

    • I said when I guessed the longlist (and got it quite, quite wrong hee hee) I wasn’t going to go out of my way to read them but might if I fancied them and read about 8.5 (now 9.5) when I guessed this I just havent written about some of them yet and one I might not at all. I just wanted to do it for fun as I love seeing how hopeless I am, ha.

      I do value other bloggers thoughts on them as Lizzy mentions above and had seen lots of people saying certain things so that helped too.

  5. Dabarai

    Three out of six is not bad, although I am surprised Rosie ALison got there. Surprised and disappointed that The Help didn’t make it.

    • The Help again is one I would love to have seen gone further. I won’t say too much about the Alison but I think I need to start and try again, I didn’t gel with it instantly, might have been timing though.

  6. You got 1 more than me right 🙂 I’m disappointed not to see ‘The Still Point’ up there and I think ‘Savage Lands’ deserved a short list…but at the same time I don’t think it is quite a winner. I still say ‘Wolf Hall’ to win, but I’d best start reading all over again just to be sure.

    • The Still Point was the only one that I didn’t own so am seeing that as a sign as why i didn’t put it forward as I haven’t read it and oddly might not now, though maybe as you liked it so much I should.

  7. I was very surprised by the short list. I am planning to read the entire short list and had hoped that by reading 9 of the long list I would be at least half way through. Unfortunately I have only read 1! I have a lot of work to do now!

    I was shocked that The Rehearsal didn’t make the list – I was sure it deserved to fight Wolf Hall for the winning position.

    • I wasn’t a fan of The Rehearsal and couldn’t finish it, am sure it was me rather than the book, so thats why its not featured on the blog and probably won’t be.

      Despite my praise fo Wolf Hall I don’t really want it to win, I think the Booker is enough, but who am I to judge.

  8. I am so impressed that you are willing to guess at the short list like that – and 3 out of 6 is pretty good, in my books, for something like this! I am appalled to have to say that I haven’t read any of those books, and I will have to do something about that fact very soon.

  9. I didn’t post my guesses on my blog (the Orange is taking a backseat this month as I’m too busy with other blog things) but elsewhere I guessed Mantel, Craig, Catton, Sackville, Hyland and, missing from my guesses, Roffey. Completely surprised and somewhat disappointed, especially as those shortlisted are probably the ones I want to read least (I haven’t read any of them yet except for Wolf Hall).

    • I am goiung to be Cartering this weekend, which have mentioned on your blog, as the enthusiasm is contagious. I have read a couple of the shortlist and decided to grab the bull by the horns and start The Lacuna but am letting all books rest with me a while before I write about them. One in particular my mind changes over since reading one minute I think it should win then I definately dont lol.

  10. mee

    Mmm somewhat annoyed that big name like Wolf Hall got into the shortlist (completely unfounded as I haven’t got near it and maybe never will). It’s like, What’s new?
    Happy to see The White Woman and the Green Bicycle there. If it won I would already have the copy of it..

    • Wolf Hall is utterly brilliant I have to say, well IMHO it is, but I do kind of think ‘well, it won the Man Booker’ but had Evie Wyld’s been in theshortlist her prior win of the John Rhys wouldn’t have bothered me hee hee. Fickle, me?

  11. You made some good predictions. The only one I got right was the Mantel one. Oh well. Anyhow, should be interesting to find out who wins the big prize. My bet is on either Moore or Mantel. Hmmmm. Of course I have yet to read any of these texts – need to write down the titles and add them to my TBR list. Blimey, this list keeps getting longer, which reminds me that I should take at your list – its under bookish extras, right?

    • I think Moore could be a good guess because she is sooooo admired and its her first proper novel (well I have assumed it is) I will be giving my thoughts on the ones I have read (and the one I am reading) over the next few weeks.

  12. I think three out of six is good! I didn’t make personal predictions (as I haven’t read any of them and half of the longlist weren’t out in the U.S. yet. I was surprised to not see The Long Song or Little Stranger on the list, but I’m thrilled to see three Americans and two first-time novelists. I’m hoping to read all six before the final announcement (with the help of international interlibrary loan).

  13. As you might guess I’m not in least bit bothered!

  14. Lisa

    I’m annoyed I’ve only read one of these (The Help), and glad it didn’t make the shortlist. Not bad for a first novel, but not GREAT, either. Not surprised Wolf Hall made it through, nor Lorrie Moore’s book as well as Kingsolver’s. Both have huge reputations.

    Also annoyed it’s so hard getting some of these titles ‘cross the pond where I live.

    Not as if I’m hurting for reading material, though, so I’ll shut my whining gob.

    • Oh did you think so Lisa, its interesting hwo some people have loved it and some not, my thoughts will be up in the not too distant future.

      Nevershush Lisa, I like hearing everyone’s opinions.

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