Monday, 23 November 2015
Giller Prize- 2015
I am always delighted to see literary events televised on mainstream T.V. So I was looking forward to the Gillers. But, sadly, I was greatly disappointed.
Rick Mercer has taken over hosting the show and I didn't find him at all entertaining. The interviews with the authors were strange, the whole format did not appeal to me. The background of the stage was blah and the speeches were almost non-existent. I wish there had been more panning of the audience to at least remember authors that we love.
And now to the books! Well, here is what the Toronto Star had to say:
It’s also a year in which the Giller selections — culled from 168 submissions by five international judges — were not exactly in lockstep with the bestseller list. After all, two short-story collections, two works of philosophical literary fiction and, well, a book about a compulsive sexual deviant do not necessarily coalesce into a bookseller’s dream display.
Enough said about the books. But I took a walk down memory lane and remembered when the books were more appealing.
I have read many of the past winners. I didn't enjoy all of them but could, at least, see how other readers might consider them winners.
Here are my favourites:
"A Fine Balance" by Rohinton Mistry
"Mercy Among Children" by David Richard Adams
"Bloodletting and Miraculous Cures" by Vincent Lam
"The Bishop's Man" by Linden MacIntyre
"Alias Grace" by Margaret Atwood
P.S. There was one small pleasure in the award show. Alexander MacLeod was one of the judges. I enjoyed reading his novel "Light Lifting". And I adored his father, Alistair MacLeod, who died last year. Alistair wrote one of my all-time favourite novels, "No Great Mischief". I also greatly enjoyed listening to Alistair talk. He was a great author and an interesting man.