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The shortlist for the International Booker Prize has been announced and features a stimulating, varied and challenging list, as follows:
Heaven by Mieko Kawakami, translated by Sam Bett and David Boyd.
From the bestselling author of Breasts and Eggs comes a sharp and illuminating novel about a teenage boy subjected to relentless bullying.
Tomb of Sand by Geetanjali Shree, translated by Daisy Rockwell
An eighty-year-old woman slips into a deep depression at the death of her husband, then resurfaces to gain a new lease on life.
The Books of Jacob by Olga Tokarczuk, translated by Jennifer Croft
Tokarczuk follows the comet-like rise and fall of the mysterious Messianic leader Jacob Frank in Enlightenment Europe.
Elena Knows by Claudia Pineiro, translated by Frances Riddle
In a single day, a journey across Buenos Aires reveals a daughter to her mother, a mother to herself, and the oppressive weight of received ideas…
Cursed Bunny, by Bora Chung
Described as ‘a genre-defying’ collection of short stories by the Korean author Bora Chung.
A New Name: Septology VC1-VII by Jon Fosse, translated by Damion Searls
Written in melodious and hypnotic ‘slow prose’, this is described as ‘a transcendent exploration of the human condition, and a radically other reading experience’.
The organisers say: “The 2022 shortlist includes previous winners Olga Tokarczuk and Jennifer Croft alongside authors translated into English for the first time. The shortlist spans six languages: Korean, Norwegian, Japanese, Spanish, Hindi and Polish.
“[These are] wildly original works of literature that will captivate readers, this year’s shortlisted books all explore trauma, whether on an individual or societal level. The winners of the prize will be named on 26 May 2022.