By JILL LAWLESS Associated Press
LONDON—Novels that explore historical injustices, the nature of consciousness and the dizzying impact of the Internet are among the six finalists for the prestigious Booker Prize for fiction.
Three books by American authors are on the shortlist announced Tuesday for the price of $ 69,000: Patricia Lockwood’s social media-infused novel “Nobody Talks About It”; Maggie Shipstead’s “Great Circle” aviators saga; and Richard Powers’ “Bewilderment”, the story of an astrobiologist and his neurodivergent son.
Powers won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2019 for the eco-epic “The Overstory,” which was also a finalist for the Booker Prize 2018.
Three other suitors explore historical trauma. They include Sri Lankan author Anuk Arudpragasam’s war story and its aftermath, “A Passage North”; South African writer Damon Galgut’s story of racism and judgment, “The Promise; And British / Somali writer Nadifa Mohamed’s miscarriage of justice story “The Fortune Men”, which takes place among dockworkers in the 1950s in Cardiff, the capital of Wales.
Historian Maya Jasanoff, who chairs the jury, said the shortlist was immersive, global and “touches on questions of life and death, which is quite poignant and relevant in this catastrophic year.”
Founded in 1969, the Booker Prize has a reputation for transforming the careers of writers and was originally open to British, Irish and Commonwealth writers. Eligibility was extended in 2014 to all English-language novels published in the UK