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Booker Prize-Winning Novels, 1969-2006

Z. M. Ridgway
The list author says: "Most to least recent."
The Inheritance of Loss
The Inheritance of Loss
"A poignant portrait of modern India (highly recommended by Salman Rushdie, India's master fabulist of "Midnight's Children" fame).  Beautiful character development and brilliant thematic structure more than compensate for the rather predictable plot."
The Sea
The Sea
"The eerie, stream-of-consciousness ramblings of a newly widowed man writing a diary.  In addition to processing his grief- and deprivation-emotions, he begins sorting through a very complex childhood trauma."
Vernon God Little
Vernon God Little
"One of the best, most original novels I've read.  Narrated by a disturbed teenager in the wake of a school shooting - a decent kid serves as the scapegoat of a messed-up world.  Cross "Catcher in the Rye" with "Huckleberry Finn," and include some "South Park" and you will have something like this book."
The Line of Beauty: A Novel
The Line of Beauty: A Novel
"Remarkably subtle social satire following the life of a newly "out" young gay man in Thatcher-era England.  Remarkably UNsubtle, pervasive descriptions of gay sex."
Life of Pi
Life of Pi
"A very odd novel. Fascinating aspects of narrative structure; terribly awkward descriptions. I spent much of the novel incredulous and bored, but the brilliantly executed conclusion revalues all of what went before."
True History of the Kelly Gang: A Novel
True History of the Kelly Gang: A Novel
"Thoroughly captivating novel purporting to be the memoirs of famed Australian folk hero/revolutionary/bandit Ned Kelley."
The Blind Assassin: A Novel
The Blind Assassin: A Novel
"Magnificent.  Just read it - don't read anything about it that could spoil the plot's various surprises."
Disgrace: A Novel
Disgrace: A Novel
"I must be missing something here - I've enjoyed several of Coetzee's other novels, particularly Elisabeth Costello, but this one was completely unappealing to me.  A boorish protagonist; a constant sense of frustration and futility; cruelty - a brutal gang rape - and the eventual culmination of the novel in acceptance of cruelty..."
Amsterdam: A Novel
Amsterdam: A Novel
"A very good novel.  Macabre and ironic; very dense and compact.  Not as good as "Atonement," which I consider to be McEwan's masterpiece, but still very worthwhile."
The God of Small Things: A Novel
The God of Small Things: A Novel
"Strange, disturbing, magnificent...the author's first and, to date, only novel.  Faulknerian disjunction of chronological sequence - Wagnerian recurrent motives - major themes of class struggle in modern India."
Last Orders
Last Orders
"Very worthwhile.  Despite the encomnia I didn't find it particularly "heart-warming," but it's a solid novel narrated through multiple perspectives."
The Ghost Road (William Abrahams)
The Ghost Road (William Abrahams)
"Some aspects of this novel are very appealing to me...historical drama of WWI interacting beautifully with an anthropologist's work on an island of recently reformed head-hunters.  But what does Lewis Carroll have to do with anything??"
How Late It Was, How Late: A Novel
How Late It Was, How Late: A Novel
Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha
Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha
"An Irish childhood novel - funny, charming, and poignant.  Of course such a book invites comparison with "Portrait of the Artist," "Sons and Lovers," and "Angela's Ashes" - but as far as I'm aware this particular work is not autobiographical."
Sacred Hunger
Sacred Hunger
"A sprawling novel - I was afraid that historical fiction set in the 18th century English slave trade would be sermon primarily and novel secondarily.  This novel, however, is very successful - very powerful, very moving."
The English Patient
The English Patient
"Eerie and dreamlike.  Layers of meaning and imagery."
The Famished Road
The Famished Road
Possession
Possession
"A wonderful novel - delightful in so many ways.  Brilliantly conceived, marvelously told.  Two beautiful romances.  Fascinating pastiche techniques.  One of my favorite novels.  You will leave the novel wishing you could read the complete works of the fictional Randolph Henry Ash...."
The Remains of the Day
The Remains of the Day
"A period piece following the life of an English butler - narrated in the first person as a journal.  The butler's dedication to his (unworthy) master and his concern for dignity have caused him to neglect his own life - which he realizes progressively and still only partially in the course of the novel."
Oscar and Lucinda
Oscar and Lucinda
Moon Tiger
Moon Tiger
The Old Devils: A Novel
The Old Devils: A Novel
The Bone People: A Novel
The Bone People: A Novel
Hotel Du Lac
Hotel Du Lac
Life and Times of Michael K: A Novel
Life and Times of Michael K: A Novel
"This is Coetzee that I like - a life-affirming portrayal of a man's struggle for independence and dignity."
Schindler's Ark
Schindler's Ark
"Later retitled "Schindler's List" and made into a movie by Stephen Spielberg, this "factional" novel is based on the true story of Oscar Schindler."
Midnight's Children: A Novel (Modern Library 100 Best Novels)
Midnight's Children: A Novel (Modern Library 100 Best Novels)
"The book that launched Rushdie's international career.  Winner not only of the Booker, but of the Booker of Bookers and the Best of the Booker.  Magical realism at its finest - a parable of India struggling towards independence."
Rites of Passage (To the End of the Earth)
Rites of Passage (To the End of the Earth)
"Well, it's Golding, which means it's good...but it's one of my least favorite of his novels.  I much prefer Lord of the Flies, The Pyramid, or The Spire to this one."
Offshore
Offshore
The Sea, the Sea (Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics)
The Sea, the Sea (Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics)
Staying On: A Novel (Phoenix Fiction)
Staying On: A Novel (Phoenix Fiction)
Saville
Saville
Heat and Dust
Heat and Dust
Holiday
Holiday
The Conservationist
The Conservationist
"Powerful and chilling story of a white businessman named Mehring in a troubled South Africa.  Subtle portrait of race- and class-relations. Brilliantly structured - images inserted in one stage of the narrative recur cyclically throughout."
The Siege of Krishnapur (New York Review Books Classics)
The Siege of Krishnapur (New York Review Books Classics)
G.: A Novel
G.: A Novel
In a Free State: A Novel
In a Free State: A Novel
Troubles (New York Review Books Classics)
Troubles (New York Review Books Classics)
The Elected Member
The Elected Member