Just the one book this week – and something from the Booker Prize longlist: ‘Elmet’ by Fiona Mozley.
This year’s longlist is a bit of an odd one. Of the books I’ve read only one deserves to be there: ‘Reservoir 13’ by Jon McGregor. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Ali Smith and Zadie Smith, but their books on the longlist, ‘Autumn’ and ‘Swing Time’, despite being enjoyable (and probably better than most other novels out there) they just aren’t examples of these writers at their best. I would have much preferred to see Gwendoline Riley’s ‘First Love’ instead.
A first novel, ‘Elmet’ is being seen as the outsider in the list but as ‘an elemental, contemporary rural noir steeped in the literature and legend of the Yorkshire landscape and its medieval history’ (The Guardian) it sound like a great read (although I do wish we could come up with a better descriptor than ‘noir’ for anything even remotely on the sinister or gloomy side.) Lovely cover illustration (by Vanessa Lubach) too!