Friday, March 20, 2009

2009 Miles Franklin longlist announced

The longlist for this year's $42,000 prize has been recently announced.

It is:

Addition by Toni Jordan (Text Publishing)
A Fraction of the Whole by Steve Toltz (Penguin Books)
Breath by Tim Winton (Hamish Hamilton)
Fugitive Blue by Claire Thomas (Allen & Unwin)
Ice by Louis Nowra (Allen & Unwin)
One Foot Wrong by Sofie Laguna (Allen & Unwin)
The Devil's Eye by Ian Townsend (Harper Collins)
The Pages by Murray Bail (Text Publishing)
The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas (Allen & Unwin)
Wanting by Richard Flanagan (Alfred A Knopf)

It's a big feather in the cap for Allen & Unwin, with five books shortlisted, and a down feather for Text with two. What are Allen & Unwin doing right (if you think making the shortlist is a good thing for authors and books…)?

This year's judges are Professor Robert Dixon, Professor Morag Fraser AM, Lesley McKay, Regina Sutton and Murray Waldren.

The Miles Franklin Award honours the memory of Australian author Miles Franklin by awarding a prize for "the novel of the year which is of the highest literary merit and presents Australian life in any of its phases".

The shortlist will be announced on 16 April 2009.


  1. Three debut novels, too - four if you count Laguna, who has previously written children's and YA books. I think that's interesting: a bit progressive, but also a bit reminiscent of last year's Booker and Prime Minister's Literary Award. I wonder how the balance between the old guard and the new guard (and the middle guard, I suppose) will change come shortlist time.

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  3. For once I've actually read a couple of the Miles Franklin books. The Pages and Ice are all right by me. (Obviously pleasing me is the judges' first consideration when putting the list together.)

    Although I've only read one of them, the A&U books look to be fairly diverse, so it might be simple luck that they've hit the spot with the judges.

  4. Have read three, to my surprise - and just bought The Pages. I will also get hold of the Laguna sometime, as someone whose opinion I value has rated it highly. But as Augustine said, not yet.


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