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No Indian author in 2009 Man Booker longlist

July 29, 2009 00:54 IST

The Booker Prize Foundation has announced the 13-author Man Booker longlist for the 2009 edition of the 50,000 pound (about Rs 40 lakh) literary prize.

However, unlike previous years, no Indian authors have made it to this year's longlist. Last year, even though Salman Rushdie's The Enchantress of Florence failed to make the cut, Amitav Ghosh's The Sea of Poppies, which begins its multilayered narrative in India in the 1830s, had made it to the shortlist

The longlist includes Summertime by JM Coetzee, who is one of only two novelists to have won the Booker Prize twice with Life & Times of Michael K in 1983 and Disgrace in 1999.

The longlist also features The Children's Book by AS Byatt, winner of the Booker Prize in 1990 with Possession. 

William Trevor, previously shortlisted four times for the annual prize, is longlisted for his new novel Love and Summer.  

Sarah Waters and Colm Toibin, who have both been twice shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, have made the 2009 longlist with their latest novels. Hilary Mantel was previously longlisted for the prize.

Releasing the longlist, James Naughtie, the chair of judges, said: "The five Man Booker judges have settled on thirteen novels as the longlist for this year's prize.  We believe it to be one of the strongest lists in recent memory, with two former winners, four past-shortlisted writers, three first-time novelists and a span of styles and themes that make this an outstandingly rich fictional mix."

"We considered more than 130 novels (including the work of nine former winners) and found ourselves travelling in a fertile landscape.  We kept discovering new talent as well as reacquainting ourselves with familiar writers, and emerged with a feeling that we were part of an exceptional year.

"Our fiction is in the hands of original and dedicated writers with fresh and appealing voices.  This is an eclectic list, taking us from the court of Henry VIII to the Hollywood jungle, with stops along the way in a nineteenth century Essex asylum, an African warzone and a futuristic Brazilian city among other places."