Next week’s International Women’s Day (Wednesday, March 8th) marks the release of this year’s longlist for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction. Followers of this blog will know that this, alongside the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, is one of my very favorite literary awards. Focusing on books written in English by women, the Women’s Prize for Fiction always highlights some true treasures of the previous publishing year while doing its share to right the wrong of most major prize lists, among which female authors are represented about 10% of the time.
Through the course of my “normal” reading life, I have read all of the prize winners since the prize’s inception in 1996. Last year was my first time undertaking to read the entire longlist of nominees, and while it was a steep mountain to climb it couldn’t have been more rewarding. And so this year, I will once again attempt to read and review all of the longlist nominees.
In the spirit of the upcoming announcement, I am going to try my hand at making a few predictions for the list, with the understanding that I am no swami.
From among books I have read and reviewed this year, I hope to see at least some of the following six on the longlist:
Homegoing – Yaa Gyasi; The Mothers – Brit Bennett; The Essex Serpent – Sarah Perry; Do Not Say We Have Nothing – Madeliene Thien; The Tidal Zone – Sarah Moss; Another Brooklyn – Jacqueline Woodson (reviews for each linked to title)
From among my To Be Read list, I will also wager that the following may appear on the longlist:
Will I get any predictions right? We’ll see on March 8th!