Lost Man Booker Prize

Lost Man Booker Prize
Awarded for Best full-length English novel from 1970
Location Commonwealth of Nations, Ireland, or Zimbabwe
Presented by Man Group
First awarded 2010
Official website themanbookerprize.com

The Lost Man Booker Prize was a special edition of the Man Booker Prize awarded by a public vote in 2010 to a novel from 1970 as the books published in 1970 were not eligible for the Man Booker Prize due to a rules alteration; until 1970 the prize was awarded to books published in the previous year, while from 1971 onwards it was awarded to books published the same year as the award. The prize was won by J. G. Farrell for Troubles.

Literary agent and archivist Peter Straus has been credited with conceiving the idea of a Man Booker Prize for the missing year after wondering why Robertson Davies's 1970 novel Fifth Business had not been included in the Man Booker Prize shortlist.[1][2] A longlist of 22 titles was drawn up by organisers.[3] A shortlist of six was selected by Rachel Cooke, Katie Derham and Tobias Hill, and revealed in London on 25 March 2010 when voting commenced on the Man Booker Prize website.[1][4][5] Voting closed on 23 April 2010.[4] The winner was announced on 19 May 2010.[1]

Four of the shortlisted authors were dead, with only Nina Bawden and Shirley Hazzard alive to give their reactions to being included.[6] Bawden called it "astonishing actually ... I thought I knew all my books backwards but I couldn't remember what this one was about".[6] Hazzard regretted that her husband, Francis Steegmuller, was no longer alive to witness the occasion.[6] J. G. Farrell won the 1973 Man Booker Prize for The Siege of Krishnapur.[2] Bawden and Muriel Spark were previously shortlisted.[2] Tobias Hill said Patrick White, noted for requesting that his name be struck off the 1979 Man Booker prize shortlist and known for his general disapproval of receiving awards, would be "spinning in his grave" if he had won the Lost Man Booker Prize for The Vivisector.[7] However, White's literary executor, Barbara Mobbs, said he had left behind "no written evidence" that he would disapprove of a posthumous award and that she was "not going to run around saying take him out".[8]


The shortlist as announced on 25 March 2010:


The prize was won by J. G. Farrell's Troubles, with 38 percent of the public vote.[9] It received more than twice the number of votes for the second-placed entry.[10] The prize came 40 years after the book's publication and 30 years after Farrell's death.[11] The award of the prize was announced by Antonia Fraser and accepted by Farrell's brother Richard. If Troubles had won the Man Booker Prize in 1970 Farrell would have been the first author to win it twice, as he won it in 1973 for The Siege of Krishnapur.[12][13] Farrell's literary agent claimed Farrell would have been "thrilled" to have won the prize.[10]

See also


  1. 1 2 3 Flood, Alison (25 March 2010). "Lost Booker prize shortlist overlooks Iris Murdoch but plumps for Muriel Spark". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 7 April 2010.
  2. 1 2 3 "Dame Muriel Spark shortlisted for 'lost' Booker Prize". BBC. 25 March 2010. Retrieved 7 April 2010.
  3. Jones, Sam (1 February 2010). "Lost Man Booker Prize longlist to award best omitted novel of 1970". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
  4. 1 2 "Australian authors shortlisted for lost Man Booker Prize". The Sydney Morning Herald. 26 March 2010. Retrieved 7 April 2010.
  5. "6 books from 1970 vie for lost Booker". CBC News. 25 March 2010. Retrieved 7 April 2010.
  6. 1 2 3 Hoyle, Ben (26 March 2010). "Author waits to hear if she has won 'lost Booker' prize 40 years on". London: The Times. Retrieved 7 April 2010.
  7. Akbar, Arifa (26 March 2010). "Posthumous blow to the author who hated book prizes". London: The Independent. Retrieved 7 April 2010.
  8. Sorensen, Rosemary (27 March 2010). "Patrick White on 'Lost Booker' shortlist". The Australian. Retrieved 7 April 2010.
  9. "JG Farrell's Troubles wins Lost Booker". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 20 May 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010.
  10. 1 2 Adams, Stephen (20 May 2010). "JG Farrell wins Lost Man Booker Prize for Troubles". The Daily Telegraph. London: Telegraph Media Group. Retrieved 20 May 2010.
  11. "'Lost Booker' for Irish writer JG Farrell". The Belfast Telegraph. Independent News and Media. 20 May 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010.
  12. "Author JG Farrell wins 1970 'lost' Booker Prize". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 19 May 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010.
  13. Collett-White, Mike (19 May 2010). "J.G. Farrell wins "lost" Booker award for Troubles". Reuters. Retrieved 20 May 2010.

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