First the facts. The Man Booker Prize, open to writers in English only from Commonwealth countries, Ireland and Zimbabwe, is not the final arbiter of literary taste. But it certainly does a decent job as a filter if you simply just can't do without what the British palate has to recommend.
If you're willing to read books only after getting nudges from the judges — British poet Andrew Motion, British journalist Rosie Blau, Britain's Royal Opera House Creative Director Deborah Bull,
Tom Sutcliffe and British academic Frances Wilson — and are willing to live without reading the likes of Philip Roth, Mahasweta Devi and David Mitchell (they dropped him from the shortlist again!), here's the 2010 Man Booker shortlist as a shopping list.
And it's about time Harold Jacobson gets his due! Till October 12 then, when the winner is announced.
And for crying out loud, learn to cope with no
writer on the list this year please!