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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: October 19, 2011 @ 11:57 am

    Booker bother and the eBook debate

    Laurence Mackin

    We’re back in business here at Pursued by a Bear, and we seem to have missed a few things in our absence.

    The Festival Hub is currently in its comfy stable, snuffling in its nosebag and enjoying a rest, after showing the Absolut Fringe and Ulster Bank Dublin Theatre festivals a clean pair of heels. Our Critics Competition is now closed and a winner will be announced soon, but there is still some time to enter our Tiny Plays competition and see your perfectly formed masterwork brought to life on the stage.

    The big news of the day is, of course, Julian Barnes taking the Booker prize for Sense of an Ending. Here is Eileen Battersby’s take on it from today’s paper. He was the bookies’ favourite in the hours before the announcement, though perhaps the dark horse of the shortlist was Patrick deWitt’s The Sisters Brothers. It’s a fantastic book, slick and stylish, but I never expected it to win the Booker – I simply didn’t think it would prove ‘literary’ enough for the panel, for good or ill. It is still, though, my favourite book of those I have read on the shortlist (and is one of my favourite books of this year). Here’s an interview with deWitt, also from today’s paper and also with Eileen.

    You may have also spotted this charming piece by Eoghan Nolan, where he argues that books and eReaders are not mutually exclusive. Feel free to unleash your fundamentalist bibliophilia or stick up for the plucky electronic upstart in the comments section.

    • redframewhitelight says:

      The Sense of an Ending was a safe, predictable choice. However, any admiration I have for the writing is swiftly eliminated by the ham-fisted “twist”, which is like something out of Midsomer Murders. As for The Sisters Brothers, de Witt gives glorified cameos to characters that other novelists would kill for. A gem.

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