tournament of books

A Look at the 2015 Tournament of Books Longlist

tournament of books

So, I’m a pretty big fan of the Tournament of Books. Most literary awards barely fly by my radar, but give me brackets with some fantastic judges and I’m IN. Last week The Morning News released the long, long list of books that “represent some of the finest works of fiction published in English” in 2014. And a fine list it is.

  • The Fever, by Megan Abbott
  • Panic in a Suitcase, by Yelena Akhtiorskaya
  • The Intimidator Still Lives in Our Hearts, by Gary Amdahl
  • Silence Once Begun, by Jesse Ball
  • Ruby, by Cynthia Bond 
  • Women, by Chloe Caldwell
  • A Brave Man Seven Storeys Tall, by Will Chancellor
  • Wolf in White Van, by John Darnielle *
  • All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr *
  • The End of Days, by Jenny Erpenbeck
  • The Book of Strange New Things, by Michel Faber *
  • Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay, by Elena Ferrante
  • The Narrow Road to the Deep North, by Richard Flanagan *
  • Let Me Be Frank With You, by Richard Ford
  • The Secret Place, by Tana French
  • American Innovations, by Rivka Galchen
  • Arctic Summer, by Damon Galgut
  • An Untamed State, by Roxane Gay *
  • The Peripheral, by William Gibson
  • Friendship, by Emily Gould
  • Tigerman, by Nick Harkaway
  • The Book of Unknown Americans, by Cristina Henríquez
  • Wittgenstein Jr, by Lars Iyer
  • A Brief History of Seven Killings, by Marlon James *
  • The Laughing Monsters, by Denis Johnson
  • The Ghost in the Electric Blue Suit, by Graham Joyce
  • Euphoria, by Lily King *
  • Redeployment, by Phil Klay *
  • My Struggle: Book Three, by Karl Ove Knausgaard
  • Nobody Is Ever Missing, by Catherine Lacey
  • California, by Edan Lepucki
  • 10:04, by Ben Lerner *
  • September Girls, by Bennett Madison
  • People Park, by Pasha Malla
  • Bedrock Faith, by Eric Charles May
  • The Children Act, by Ian McEwan
  • Our Secret Life in the Movies, by Michael McGriff and J.M. Tyree
  • The Man with the Compound Eyes, by Wu Ming-Yi
  • The Bone Clocks, by David Mitchell *
  • Florence Gordon, by Brian Morton
  • Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage, by Haruki Murakami *
  • Everything I Never Told You, by Celeste Ng *
  • Dept. of Speculation, by Jenny Offill *
  • Alphabet, by Kathy Page
  • Reunion, by Hannah Pittard
  • Afternoon Men, by Anthony Powell
  • Bellweather Rhapsody, by Kate Racculia
  • Lila, by Marilynne Robinson
  • Dan, by Joanna Ruocco
  • Lost for Words, by Edward St. Aubyn
  • Station Eleven, by Emily St. John Mandel *
  • Adam, by Ariel Schrag
  • Dear Committee Members, by Julie Schumacher
  • Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, by David Shafer
  • Some Luck, by Jane Smiley
  • The Vacationers, by Emma Straub
  • Lena Finkle’s Magic Barrel, by Anya Ulinich
  • Area X: The Southern Reach Trilogy (Annihilation, Authority, and Acceptance), by Jeff VanderMeer *
  • The Free, by Willy Vlautin
  • The Paying Guests, by Sarah Waters
  • Brown Girl Dreaming, by Jacqueline Woodson 
  • All the Birds Singing, by Evie Wyld
  • The Wallcreeper, by Nell Zink

By early January the list will be narrowed down to 16 final books. Let’s do some predictions, shall we?

I’ve put stars beside the books I read this year and bolded those I think will end up in the Tournament. I originally had Brown Girl Dreaming on my list of predictions, but since it’s a memoir and the Tournament of Books is a fiction competition I’m not sure it will be sent through. My sixteenth spot is reserved for one of the books from a small press, but I just haven’t heard enough about any of them to make a great guess. I’m definitely planning to read Bedrock Faith by Eric Charles May (I just picked it up from the library!) because it sounds amazing and hopefully squeeze in a few others before the battle begins.

Have you read some of the books on the list? What do you think has the best chance of making it into the competition?

If you’re curious about any of the books I haven’t linked, here’s a great Goodreads list.

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