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Will Michael Ondaatje, who won the Golden Man Booker Prize for The English Patient, collect another Booker for Warlight? Or will the award be given to the author of a graphic novel (Nick Drnaso, for Sabrina) for the first time in the history of the Man Booker?
According to the best online betting sites in the United Kingdom, yes. These writers are the strongest candidates to win the United Kingdom’s most prestigious literary award. However, the potential for an upset is much bigger in the case of the Booker than in the case of, say, sporting events.
Academic James F. English argues that scandals and public dissatisfaction over the awarded author paradoxically increase the popularity of the prize. It is, after all, outrage that
“keeps a prize the focus of attention.”
And since the Booker has a history of surprising the bookies, gamblers may want to take a look at the outsiders. If there is any betting category where going for the underdogs could pay off, it’s the Man Booker Prize. The following contestants, in particular, are dark horses that could very well bring you enormous returns.
Robin Robertson: The Long Take
This narrative poem is set in a specific time but it deals with social issues very relevant to our times. The protagonist, a survivor of D-Day, is trying to adjust to a thoroughly altered post-war society where he is seen as a suspicious figure. As the LA Review of Books suggested, “the poem speaks to the present as well as to the past” by exploring the budding of McCarthyism.
Praised by the likes of John Banville, the winner of the Booker Prize 2005, The Long Take combines poetry with a cinematic style. Robertson’s craftsmanship and his poem’s social relevance cannot be missed.
Rachel Kushner: The Mars Room
Sitting at the very bottom of the bookies’ list on online betting sites in the UK, The Mars Room is the ultimate underdog. Which is puzzling, considering Rachel Kushner’s credentials—both of her previous novels were finalists for the National Book Award of the US and her present work has enjoyed a very warm welcome from critics.
The Guardian points out that “Kushner brings to centre those society would like to make invisible”—namely, inmates. Kushner’s critique of the prison system is bolstered by extensive research: the author “spent time in prisons and displays an impressive knowledge of life inside.”
That Kushner achieved her goal and converted that knowledge into an important novel is best illustrated by the the Booker judges’ description of the book. According to them, The Mars Room is “breezy, hardened, bleakly comic, it contains wonderfully rich dramatis personae and an extraordinary sensory vividness. It feels terrifyingly authentic.”
Esi Edugyan: Washington Black
Edugyan’s second novel was shortlisted for the Booker in 2011. Her latest book, whose inclusion in the Booker longlist was announced before the novel’s actual publication, could bring her even more success.
The titular character of the novel is an 11-year-old field slave who becomes a personal servant of an eccentric scientist. This is only the beginning of an epic tale that, according to its publisher Penguin Random House, “asks the question, What is true freedom?”
While the novel has been widely applauded, some reviewers have criticized its abundance of secondary storylines. The judges disagree: they have praised Edugyan’s work specifically for its scope, calling it “a book of extraordinary political and racial scope.” Considering this difference of opinions, Washington Black sounds like it could be one of those unexpected (which is not to say: undeserved) winners that “keep the prize a focus of attention.”
How long can you bet on the Booker Prize 2018 winner?
At 1xBet Sportsbook, bets are open until October 16, but you might want to make your prediction sooner rather than later. When the shortlist gets published, the official odds will surely be slashed, so if you want to maximize your returns, don’t wait too long with betting on the Booker Prize 2018!