When the Man Booker Prize announced its shortlist of finalists Tuesday, two American writers made the cut from the previously announced longlist of 13. Paul Beatty’s “The Sellout” and Ottessa Moshfegh’s “Eileen” are in the running for the $65,000 prize for a single work of fiction, which will be awarded at an Oct. 25 ceremony in London.
The two outlasted Nobel prizewinner J.M. Coetzee, a two-time winner of the Man Booker Prize, whose novel “The Schooldays of Jesus” didn’t make it past the longlist stage.
Only one author who has previously made it to the shortlist continues; that’s Deborah Levy with “Hot Milk.”
Because books are published in Britain and the U.S. on different schedules, two of the titles on the shortlist are not yet available in America. David Szalay’s contender, “All That Man Is,” won’t be published here until October, while Madeleine Thien’s novel “Do Not Say We Have Nothing,” published by independent Granta Books in Britain, does not appear to have a U.S. release date yet.
However, “His Bloody Project” by Graeme Macrae Burnet, from a tiny Scottish publisher with only two staff, is currently available to U.S. book buyers via Kindle.
For decades, the Man Booker Prize was open only to books published in the U.K. and certain territories, but that changed in 2014 when it opened to books published in English worldwide. In 2015, Jamaican Marlon James, who lives and teaches in the U.S., won the prize for his novel “A Brief History of Seven Killings.”
The complete shortlist for the 2016 Man Booker Prize:
Paul Beatty (American), “The Sellout”
Deborah Levy (British), “Hot Milk”
Graeme Macrae Burnet (British), “His Bloody Project”
Ottessa Moshfegh (American), “Eileen”
David Szalay (Canadian-British), “All That Man Is”
Madeleine Thien (Canadian), “Do Not Say We Have Nothing”