1969

The 1960’s.

The Beatles were reinventing pop music every six months or so, Mary Quant gave the world the mini-skirt, people started to be able to afford televisions and cars (changing the way we saw the world forever), and my mom and dad did most of their courting at a coffee shop in West Bromwich called The Casa Bamboo. Oh yes, and right at the decade’s close, in October 1969, the very first Booker winner was announced: PH Newby’s Something to Answer For.

This was the full shortlist in 1969

  • Barry England – Figures in a Landscape
  • Nicholas Moseley – The Impossible Object
  • Iris Murdoch – The Nice & The Good
  • PH Newby – Something to Answer For
  • Muriel Spark – The Public Image
  • GM Williams – From Scenes Like These

Over the next six weeks I will be reading the shortlist. In alphabetical order. (for neatness). (lovely neatness).

Of the six writers, four are completely new to me and only one (Spark) is someone whose work I am particularly familiar with. I thought I had read The Public Image, but it isn’t on my bookshelves, so I probably haven’t. Which means six new books to read. (and six new opinions to have).

Perhaps the nicest part of this project will be discovering new (to me) books and authors. Hopefully I won’t be doing this alone for long. Join me. Pick a book or two off the shortlist and let’s go find a tree to lean up against. We’ll take a picnic.

Maybe you have already read some of them. If you have any opinions on any of them, stick your thoughts in the comments box.

Those of you who know me, will probably be assuming that the result of this one is a foregone conclusion. Muriel Spark is one of my favourite and best writers. But anything can happen.

Book one, page one, read…

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