The Green Carnation Prize Shortlist 2012

I am thrilled to be able to announce the Green Carnation Prize shortlist for 2012. After a whole weekend, yes weekend, of debating and discussing the long list the six shortlisted titles we have chosen are…

The Green Carnation Shortlist 2012

  • Carry The One – Carol Anshaw (Penguin Books, American, 4th novel)
  • A Perfectly Good Man – Patrick Gale (4th Estate, British, 16th novel)
  • Scenes from Early Life – Philip Hensher (4th Estate, British, 8th novel)
  • Tony Hogan Bought Me An Ice Cream Before He Stole Me Ma – Kerry Hudson (Chatto & Windus, British, debut novel)
  • Moffie – Andre Carl Van Der Merwe (Europa Editions, South African, debut novel)
  • Jack Holmes and his Friend – Edmund White (Bloomsbury, American, 10th novel)

I think I am allowed to say (though who is really going to tell me off) that in the three years I have judged the prize this was the hardest longlist to shortlist selection we have had to make. That is how good the longlist was. I know that judges of prizes say that all the time and it is a bit of a cliché but in this case it is genuinely true. All the judges individually had to say goodbye to some of their favourite reads of the year (none more so than me – martyr much) and while we are thrilled with the shortlist we were sorry to see seven of the titles go and we have a proper mission ahead deciding the winner. If you are hankering for some great reads though do check out the short and long listed titles. Actually the good thing is I can talk about the books that I loved which didn’t make the shortlist now, can’t I?

The winner will be announced on the 12th fo December 2012. For more info visit the Green Carnation website. Which of these titles have you read and what did you think? Might you be tempted to try any of the shortlisted titles you haven’t read?

11 Comments

Filed under The Green Carnation Prize

11 responses to “The Green Carnation Prize Shortlist 2012

  1. Excellent, I haven’t read any but I’m definitely going to look one or two up. Did I read somewhere there was a Bangladeshi book on the longlist? There’s a lot of pomposity about literary prizes but in my view any awards that highlight good books are to be coveted.

    • Philip Hensher’s book has a Bengali twist, if that makes sense. They are a brilliant list of books, but the longlist was amazing so whatever made it on the shortlist I was instantly looking forward to reading again. I hope you like the ones you try? Let me know!

  2. great selection Simon ,look forward to see who the winner is ,all the best stu

  3. Carry The One is definitely on my to be read soon list. I noticed that after you long listed it there was a sudden flurry of reviews in the papers. Trendsetters much! I know that judging the prize must be a hell of a lot of work but I’d love to do something like this, for the sheer joy of sharing books you love.

  4. Great to have another list out there circulating and promoting those great writers. Where to start?

  5. kimbofo

    Don’t take this the wrong way, but the problem I have with this prize is that I end up getting sidetracked by thoughts such as “oh, I didn’t know he was gay” or “I had no idea she was gay” when surely an author’s sexuality shouldn’t matter at all and the literature should stand on its own merits… ??? Or am I missing something? (Sorry, not meaning to be controversial, but I cant be the only person who thinks this — or maybe I am, in which case I will crawl back under my rock.)

    • True I can see your point Kim and I think everyone’s thoughts and opinions on this are valid. Catherine put it really well in a piece she did for Foyles recently when she said…

      “True, it’s a niche. But so are most prizes. They all have their criteria, whether they are gender based or age-based or genre-based. In a time when ‘gay’ is still one of the worst insults in the playground, a prize where openly LGBT authors get recognition sends a message either to young people or indeed to anyone else that gay people do good things and that, I think, is still important.”

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