Booker Prize shortlist to be announced

The winner of this year’s Booker Prize will be announced – with US authors and debut novels dominating the shortlist.

Last year’s prize was jointly won by Margaret Atwood’s The Testaments and Bernardine Evaristo’s Girl, Woman, Other.

This year, Avni Doshi’s Burnt Sugar and Maaza Mengiste’s The Shadow King are among the books up for the £50,000 prize.

2020 Booker Prize
2020 Booker Prize

The New Wilderness by Diane Cook, Tsitsi Dangarembga’s This Mournable Body, Douglas Stuart’s Shuggie Bain and Real Life by Brandon Taylor are also up for the award.

Dame Hilary Mantel failed to make the shortlist with the third book in her Cromwell trilogy The Mirror And The Light.

Doshi, Cook, Stuart and Taylor are debut novelists and four out of the six shortlisted authors are US based.

Shuggie Bain, by Scottish-US author Stuart, is set in Glasgow and explores tough upbringings, alcoholism and poverty.

Hilary Mantel book reading
Hilary Mantel book reading

Burnt Sugar tells the story of the shifting power dynamics in a mother-daughter relationship and The Shadow King is about an orphan living in Ethiopia amid the threat of invasion by Mussolini.

The New Wilderness deals with climate change and Real Life tackles abuse, racism, homophobia, trauma, grief and alienation.

Barack Obama will make a virtual appearance at the awards ceremony on Thursday night at the Roundhouse in London.

The former US president will talk about what he has learned from reading Booker Prize winning novels.