Lake Waban in Massachusetts June 2017

My favorite place to walk in the Boston area

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Bailey's Women's Prize for Fiction 2016 Longlist

I discovered this year's Bailey's Women's Prize for Fiction Longlist from Danielle at A Work in Progress (please see the blogroll). All of them sound interesting, and no doubt you have read a few.

I've borrowed two of the longlist titles from the library today, and I own a copy of Geraldine Brooks's The Secret Chord. I'm so happy to see that Brooks is on the list because I believe that she is one of the best authors writing in English today. As of tomorrow, I will be reading A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding by Jackie Copleton, which deals with the generational repercussions of the American atomic destruction of Nagasaki over many years. Copleton lived in Japan, teaching English.

The other novel I've borrowed and hope to read soon is Girl at War by Sara Novic (NO-vich), by a Croatian writer who endured the War in Serbia/Croatia in the early 1990s. Although there have been a number of Serbian, Bosnian, and Croatian authors whose novels have been translated into English, very few have been openly recognized or even reviewed in English-speaking media. I can't really understand this, particularly because English, Australian, and American U.N. forces contributed to the "peace-keeping" effort in the Balkans. I don't know.

Have you read any on the list? Do you see any that interest you?


  1. I always enjoy perusing these lists and usually end up adding a few books to my wish list. The only one I've read this year is My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout... it is wonderful!

    1. Hi JoAnn,
      I've heard many people say that My Name is Lucy Barton is top-notch. I haven't read a single novel by Elizabeth Strout--it's high time I did.

    2. It certainly is!! Strout is one of my favorites.

  2. The book by Sara Novic sounds very interesting. I hope to hear what you think of it.

    The only book on the list I know much about (but haven't read) is Kate Atkinson's A God in Ruins. I do plan to read that one some time.

    1. Hi Tracy,
      I was glad I read Girl at War, for the Croatian perspective on the Balkan Wars, from the point of view of a child and then looking back from the point of view of a young adult looking back. I thought the novel was worth the time, and it is a fast read, despite the 300 pages. I want to read more from other writers about this time period, from the Serb, Bosnian, and Croatian perspectives.