Avni Doshi, Hilary Mantel in Booker Prize longlist

A debut novel about love between mother and daughter by Avni Doshi, and Hilary Mantel’s third work in the Cromwell trilogy, are among 13 books on the longlist for the 2020 Booker Prize for Fiction, organisers announced on Tuesday.

Selected from 162 novels published in the UK or Ireland between October 1, 2019 and September 30, 2020, the prize is open to writers of any nationality, writing in English and published in the UK or Ireland.

The shortlist of six books will be announced on September 15 and the winner revealed in November. The winner will receive £50,000, while the shortlisted authors each receive £2,500 and a specially bound edition of their book.

  • Diane Cook (USA – The New Wilderness (Oneworld Publications
  • Tsitsi Dangarembga (Zimbabwe – This Mournable Body (Faber & Faber
  • Avni Doshi (USA – Burnt Sugar (Hamish Hamilton, Penguin Random House
  • Gabriel Krauze (UK – Who They Was (4th Estate, HarperCollins
  • Hilary Mantel (UK -The Mirror & The Light (4th Estate, HarperCollins
  • Colum McCann (Ireland/USA – Apeirogon (Bloomsbury Publishing
  • Maaza Mengiste (Ethiopia/USA – The Shadow King (Canongate Books
  • Kiley Reid (USA – Such a Fun Age (Bloomsbury Circus, Bloomsbury Publishing
  • Brandon Taylor (USA – Real Life (Originals, Daunt Books Publishing
  • Anne Tyler (USA – Redhead by The Side of The Road (Chatto & Windus, Vintage
  • Douglas Stuart (Scotland/USA – Shuggie Bain (Picador, Pan Macmillan
  • Sophie Ward (UK – Love and Other Thought Experiments (Corsair, Little, Brown
  • C Pam Zhang (USA – How Much of These Hills is Gold (Virago, Little, Brown

US-born and UK-educated Doshi’s novel ‘Burnt Sugar’ has received rave reviews, while Mantel’s ‘The Mirror & The Light’ will bid for another Booker prize. Mantel previously won the prize twice for the first two novels in the trilogy.

Margaret Busby, chair of the 2020 judges, said: “Each of these books carries an impact that has earned it a place on the longlist, deserving of wide readership… Some of the books focus on interpersonal relationships that are complex, nuanced, emotionally charged”.

“As judges we connected with these writers’ well-crafted prose, the mastery of detail, the arresting sentence, the credibility of the narrative arc, the ability to use to the full, the resources of storytelling. Unplanned, our final selection encompasses both seasoned favourites and debut talents ― a truly satisfying outcome.”

The panel of five judges included Lee Child, author; Sameer Rahim, author and critic; Lemn Sissay, writer and broadcaster; and Emily Wilson, classicist and translator.

The 2019 Booker Prize for Fiction was won jointly by Margaret Atwood for ‘The Testaments’ and Bernardine Evaristo for ‘Girl, Woman, Other’.

Avni Doshi, Hilary Mantel in Booker Prize longlist