“The Man Booker Prize promotes the finest in fiction by rewarding the very best book of the year. The prize is the world’s most important literary award and has the power to transform the fortunes of authors and publishers.” -from the Man Booker Prize website
The Booker Prize is a major annual literary prize, and a recently announced rule change concerning who is eligible to win is making waves in the publishing world. Historically, the Booker Prize had been open to English-language novels from Britain and the Commonwealth, which included authors from Canada, India, and Australia, but excluded authors from the United States. Now, eligibility has been expanded to include any novel written in the English language. [Edited to add: and published in the U.K. -10/17/13]
Author and publisher reactions have varied, depending on whether they are suddenly eligible (Americans) or suddenly facing more competition (British & Commonwealth). The two major American literary prizes, the Pulitzer and the National Book Award, are still only open to Americans.
“Reactions to the expansion announcement” from the Man Booker Prize site
“The backlash to the American invasion of the Booker Prize” from The New York Times
See a list of previous Booker Prize winners from Wikipedia.
What do you think of this rule change? Have you ever bought and/or read a book simply because it won a prize – the Booker or any other? Which Booker Prize winner is your favorite? Leave a comment to reply.