In mid January I wrote of my plans to read the Republic of Consciousness Prize shortlist (you may read my post here). Between now and the announcement of the prize winner on 9th March I will be posting my thoughts on each book along with guest posts from those of their publishers who chose to take part in this feature. I am grateful to all who found the time to provide me with content.
I had previously read two of the books from the prize longlist which did not make it onto the shortlist. I have since read one other. If you click on a title below the photograph you may read my reviews.
- The Empress and the Cake by Linda Stift (Peirene Press)
- The Glue Ponys by Chris Wilson (Tangerine Press)
- The Storyteller by Kate Armstrong (Holland House Books)
I had also previously read one of the shortlisted books:
- Forbidden Line by Paul Stanbridge (Galley Beggar Press)
Given the quality of the writing in all of these books I was eager to tackle the remaining shortlist and have not been disappointed. All credit to the prize judges for curating such an impressive selection.
On Friday I will post the first of my remaining reviews – Solar Bones by Mike McCormack (Tramp Press). This has already won the Goldsmith Prize and the Irish Book Award Novel of the Year. It was the only other book from the Republic of Consciousness Prize long and short lists that I already had on my TBR pile. All other shortlisted books have been generously provided by the publishers for this feature – a big thank you to them.
Next week I will post my thoughts on: Fine Fine Fine Fine Fine by Diane Williams (CB Editions – who went into semi-retirement just before the shortlist was announced); Martin John by Anakana Schofield (And Other Stories) which was also shortlisted for the 2015 Giller Prize and the 2016 Ethel Wilson Prize for Fiction; Treats by Lara Williams (Freight Books).
My reviews for the remaining three books on the shortlist – Born on a Tuesday by Elnathan John (Cassava Republic) which was shortlisted for the 2016 Nigeria Prize for Literature and longlisted for the 2016 Etisalat Prize for Literature, Counter Narratives by John Keene (Fitzcarraldo Editions), and Light Box by KJ Orr (Daunt Books) – will follow along with the promised publisher guest posts.
Naturally I am not the only person reading these books. I recommend you check out the reviews being posted by the contemporary small press – A site for small presses, writers, poets & readers as they are excellent.
As a footnote to this introduction I will add one other thing that this exercise has taught me – how to spell consciousness. I have been hashtagging it on Twitter incorrectly for over a month. If you spot me doing this sort of thing again? Please let me know.