You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Top Stories

Man Booker Prize 2018: First ever graphic novel makes list with Nick Drnaso's Sabrina

The i logo The i 24/07/2018 Adam Sherwin
a close up of a book © Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd

A graphic novel has been included in the longlist for the Man Booker Prize for the first time, marking a breakthrough for the illustrated genre.


Sabrina by US author Nick Drnaso, which employs deliberately simplistic drawings to illustrate its story of violence and “fake news” conspiracy theories, impressed a Booker jury which had previously ignored a form once dismissed as “comic books.”

a person standing in a room © Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd

From Frank Miller’s groundbreaking Batman: The Dark Knight Returns to Holocaust story Maus and Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series, graphic novels have demonstrated an ability to convey adult themes for more than 30 years.

Graphic novel 'a matter of time'

 Appiah, said: “Given the changing shape of fiction, it was only a matter of time before a graphic novel was included on the Man Booker longlist. Sabrina makes demands on the reader in precisely the way all good fiction does.”

The 13 titles on the longlist consist of six writers from the UK, three from the US, two from Ireland and two from Canada. This year marks the first occasion that novels published in Ireland are eligible for the prize.

a person posing for the camera © Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd

Leading authors and publishers have called for the Man Booker Prize to abandon its 2013 policy of allowing American writers to compete.

The past two winners of the £50,000 award, regarded as the most important of literary prizes, have been American.

Four debuts on list

Four debut novels are recognised by the judges this year, including Scottish poet Robin Robertson’s The Long Take, which is a novel in verse and Sophie Mackintosh’s The Water Cure and Guy Gunaratne’s In Our Mad And Furious City.

© Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd

There are four authors are under the age of 30 - Daisy Johnson, nominated for Everything Under and Sally Rooney (Normal People) are the joint youngest, aged 27.

a person standing in front of a laptop © Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd

Michael Ondaatje, winner of Golden Man Booker – a special one-off award that crowned the best work of fiction from the last five decades of the prize – makes the list with his seventh novel Warlight.

a close up of a sign © Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd

There is an apocalyptical flavour to the longlist. Appiah said: “All of these books – which take in slavery, ecology, missing persons, inner-city violence, young love, prisons, trauma, race – capture something about a world on the brink.”

The 2018 winner will be announced in October at London’s Guildhall.

The Man Booker Prize 2018 longlist:

Belinda Bauer (UK)                                       Snap (Bantam Press)

Booker judges: “An acute, stylish, intelligent novel about how we survive trauma. Expertly paced, Snap offers a beautiful evocation of the lives of children, and how they perceive and manage tragedy.”

Anna Burns (UK)                                           Milkman (Faber & Faber)

“At the intersection of class, race, gender and sexual violence, it deals with oppression and power with a Beckettian sense of humour, offering a wholly original take on Ireland in the time of the Troubles through the mind of a young girl.”

Nick Drnaso (USA)                                        Sabrina (Granta Books)

Oblique, subtle, minimal, unmanipulative: the style of the pictures is the book’s worldview. Drnaso uses images to express an idea about what’s invisible – an idea about uncertainty, and the different kinds of holes that missing people leave in our lives.”

Esi Edugyan (Canada)                                  Washington Black (Serpent’s Tail)

“A dazzling exploration of race in the Atlantic world, which also manages to be a yarn and a chase story. It manages to keep you on the edge of your seat, while making you, as a reader, want to savour every moment.”

Guy Gunaratne (UK)                                 In Our Mad And Furious City (Tinder Press)

“An ambitious mosaic of virtuosic ventriloquism, Guy Gunaratne’s book is an inner city novel for our times, exploring the endurance of social trauma across generations, and conveying the agony and energy of the marginalised, the outsider, and the oppressed.”

Daisy Johnson (UK)                                      Everything Under (Jonathan Cape)

“A hypnotic, mythic, unexpected story from a beguiling new voice. Everything Under is an exploration of family, gender, the ways we understand each other and the hands we hold out to each other – a story that’s like the waterways at its heart.”

Rachel Kushner (USA)                                 The Mars Room (Jonathan Cape)

“A novel about gender, class and the absolute corruption of the American dream, The Mars Room explores the meaning of incarceration in our moment. It feels terrifyingly authentic.”

Sophie Mackintosh (UK)                               The Water Cure (Hamish Hamilton)

“This chilling, beautifully written novel explores the ways in which extreme parental protection can fail, and unpicks patriarchy at its core, forcing us to ask what it means to survive, indeed whether it is possible to survive, in a man’s  world.”

Michael Ondaatje (Canada)                     Warlight (Jonathan Cape)

“Wonderfully atmospheric, beautifully paced, subtle storytelling. Warlight contains an incredible array of characters through whom Ondaatje tells the hidden, barely spoken, tale of war, especially as it impacts on children.”

Richard Powers (USA)                                  The Overstory (Willian Heinemann)

“An ecological epic, a novel of ideas, The Overstory begins with five apparently distinct narratives and then binds them into a compelling network of connections.”

Robin Robertson (UK)                                  The Long Take (Picador)

“A book about a man and a city in shock, it’s an extraordinary evocation of the debris and the ongoing destruction of war even in times of peace., Robin Robertson shows the flexibility a poet can bring to form and style.”

Sally Rooney (Ireland)                                  Normal People (Faber & Faber)

“A very intimate character study of two young people trying to figure out how to love each other, Normal People is written in compressed, composed, allusive prose that invites you read behind the lines”

Donal Ryan (Ireland)                                     From A Low And Quiet Sea (Doubleday Ireland)

“A deft, unshowy novel about manhood and momentous contingency, it evokes the way in which real lives unfold and wrap around each other."

AdChoices
AdChoices

More from The i

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon