Comments for http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html en-gb 30 Wed 06 May 2015 09:04:37 GMT+1 A feed of user comments from the page found at http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html floobyfloss http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=97#comment33 This post has been Removed Mon 05 Oct 2009 15:23:02 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=94#comment32 "Application of the term troll is highly subjective. Some readers may characterize a post as trolling, while others may regard the same post as a legitimate contribution to the discussion, even if controversial. The term is often used as an ad hominem strategy to discredit an opposing position by attacking its proponent." WikipediaIt is a world of mirrors. He/she who smelled it dealt it.You only have to look at my previous posts to have your (meaningless)accusations of my being a Troll utterly discredited.I have robust arguments and opinions. Throw a straw man at me and I will bounce that strategy back at you. The truth is those that accuse others of trolling are merely doing what any cat or dog does to mark its territory. Territory is a meaningless concept on the internet. I read books. I read some books well. I read some "good" books. I am not a Booky bookier than thou reader. The competition ruins my personal experience of discovering a book for myself. How I choose my read is a personal experience. I am not a slave to the robot programming of an industry which is becoming a simpletons magnet. Fri 02 Oct 2009 11:57:18 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=91#comment31 "...yes, to dismiss any genre, any artform 'sight unseen', 'blind' or on principle COULD lead to you missing something you might enjoy."OMFG that means I HAVE to read all the Booky noms or I am a Troll? or might not be enjoying myself? ha ha...Those name calling can't see any points made by me because they don't want to see any points made by me. Try reading books that have nothing to do with the Booky and then you can tell us all about the heart rending tragedy that occurs as a direct result of not being a sheep.baaaaaaaa ! Thu 01 Oct 2009 12:24:41 GMT+1 perplexingApollonia http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=88#comment30 They are still book stores,not book market departments, where real engaged booksellers,well-read,knowing the interests of their regular consumer,informs them about non publicity merchandised pearls from passionate publishers.This is based on a sensual intellectual love for books enriching the spirits...far far away from this mainstream book minimalism formatting an economy who considers selling books similar to selling happy pills,tainted glasses,TV´s or perfumed paper handkerchiefs, some kind of media beauty contest where the artificial flavour taste stronger than nature for the profit of those who enjoy compulsive consumers...one has to invest engagement to use books as a tool of reflexivity, spoon-feed mass products shame the neuronal potential and lead to a complexity phobic society unable to face the coming problems deeply and creatively. Thu 01 Oct 2009 08:55:59 GMT+1 Dearg_Doom http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=85#comment29 I make a point of not reading Booker nominations. Wed 30 Sep 2009 11:45:39 GMT+1 easterngreen http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=82#comment28 Also, Dearg Doom, DE does not need to defend his position, but this is a blog response area in an arts and culture section of the BBC where people often discuss things. It would be strange posting if you had no interest in discussing the blog themes, and also, if you can't or won't offer up reasons why you have posted things that's fine, but there's no need to antagonize others with name calling and dismissive replies. Those questioning DE were genuinely curious, not 'mobbers'.And regarding X-Factor, porn, Mills and Boon: no you don't have like them, but yes, to dismiss any genre, any artform 'sight unseen', 'blind' or on principle COULD lead to you missing something you might enjoy. Although yes, in the long run not thinking or engaging with genres, etc, you generally don't like will save you a lot of time and effort, but you are still theoretically artificially filtering out things you might like for no good reason.I think I'm done with this now! Wed 30 Sep 2009 10:41:13 GMT+1 easterngreen http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=79#comment27 Mr. Doom,"Firstly this is not a 'discussion thread', this is not a 'debate' and this is not 'internet message boards'. This is Razia Iqbal's BBC Arts blog. She writes the blog, we write comments."Pedantry, sir, pedantry! We all know it's a blog! Comments posted in isolation are merely that - comments. Several comments posted in an attempt to engage and debate ideas with other posters then becomes a discussion! An online discussion could be called a discussion thread. You know this! An yet you choose to try and 'score points' on technicalities rather than address any point anyone is making, therefore rendering your post ultimately, well, pointless.As for 'trolling', Doctuer_Eiffel has posted several controversial and often insulting comments intended to provoke and inflame responses. He has often used 'straw man' arguements by misrepresenting the position of others in order to present the illusion he has 'won' the arguement.You are also guilty of the informal fallacy of the straw man concept. You have misrepresented by position regarding DE. I simply wondered what reasonable, credible arguement he had for outright dismissing ALL award shortlists for ALL artform, as is the logical extrapolation of his premise of not reading Booker books regardless of anything.But as a troll, he is not interested in responding n those terms! Wed 30 Sep 2009 10:18:38 GMT+1 Dearg_Doom http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=76#comment26 I am Dearg Doom.With the greatest respect... EasternGreen -'This discussion thread seems to be going nowhere.The starting point of this 'debate' was Doctuer_Eiffel's statement that he makes a point of not reading novels listed for the Booker prize...''I don't usually engage in this sort of thread debate...'John Self Asylum -'First rule of internet message boards...'Firstly this is not a 'discussion thread', this is not a 'debate' and this is not 'internet message boards'. This is Razia Iqbal's BBC Arts blog. She writes the blog, we write comments. Look at comment number one from the irrepressible Dennis JR... this is a comment. Look at comment number two from the Doctuer... this is a comment.Also...John Self Asylum -'Doctuer_Eiffel is a troll...'. 'Troll Calling' is in itself a major troll activity. It is often an attempt to invalidate another person’s opinion. Doctuer_Eiffel's first post is simply an opinion, not an argument. He is under no more obligation to justify his opinion than Dennis JR is for post number one. Yes, some of his further comments have been somewhat provocative and ill tempered but is this not understandable when he posted his opinion and was then challenged to defend his right to have it?And 'mobbing posts' of the type -'yes we are right because there are more of us' ... 'yes that's right! we are right and the person we disagree with is a TROLL!'where several people 'gang up on' and attempt to create a false consensus in order to undermine or invalidate another person's opinion, would also be best left in Shrek's swamp.I feel that we all make the sort of blanket exclusions that Doctuer_Eiffel has made regarding the Man Booker nominations. How many of you read or have ever read soft porn novels? Would a fan of this genre convince you that you were being narrow minded by excluding this type of book? Likewise Mills & Boon novels, am I risking missing out on 'the best book ever written' by not even considering these books? Surely it is the same with music. Many people are utterly disinterested with X-Factor style TV talent show winners. Are they being narrow minded? Perhaps in the eyes of fans of these shows. In my mind they have simply identified a mechanism or agenda that so distorts or skews a media, as to put it utterly outside their field of interest. Are they entitled to this opinion?Come on Razzer, any chance of another blog post? You are about as prolific as Nelson's right hand (Post 1797) ;) Your comment section too often takes on the nature of a grumpy taxi queue, as people wait and wait for the next post. Some of the other BBC bloggers post every day. I understand you are based in London and it can be quite hard to find something arts based to write about :-p but once ever three of four weeks seems a bit stingy. Tue 29 Sep 2009 22:00:58 GMT+1 easterngreen http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=73#comment25 Ah, you're right John. I got sucked in there, didn't I? I don't usually engage in this sort of thread debate. But every so often I just have this urge to argue against illogical positions. Good link. I'm reading about straw man arguements! I'm not new to trolls, but succombed to the bait here. We both did!Ok, I no longer care about Doctuer_Eiffel's response, although it would be interesting to see if he can come up with a credible arguement for his stated position or whether he just proves your point! Might still check back...!Cheers John. Tue 29 Sep 2009 17:49:07 GMT+1 John Self http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=70#comment24 easterngreen,Of course not. Doctuer_Eiffel is a troll. If I'd recognised this at the start I wouldn't have bothered engaging with him/her in the first place.http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=trollFirst rule of internet message boards: Don't feed the troll! Tue 29 Sep 2009 15:27:52 GMT+1 easterngreen http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=67#comment23 Doctuer_Eiffel,"What argument? Are you saying I am a liar?"I apologise, technically I should have written, "The arguement behind this viewpoint is fundamentally flawed," although I feel you are being deliberatley obtuse.The reason both myself and others have posted comments on this blog is because we do not understand the logic behind the reson you reject the Bookers (and presumably other award shortlists for books and other artforms?)My arguement, which you have interpreted incorrectly, is that the quality of any work of art should be appreciated by us individually regardless of the context it exists in public consciousness. I did not say what I personally read were good books.If a book is popular or nominated for an award, so what? Why does that stop you from reading it? It is still the same book whether acclaimed or ignored.If you believe all the books selected in the Booker prize do not appeal to you or are selected for questionable reasons, or you don't trust the opinion of the panel, well, fair enough. Don't read them. But by completely refusing outright to read anything recommended on any shortlist you may prevent you from reading something you might really enjoy, surely?I am genuinely interested in whether you can justify this position logically without resorting to aggressive, hostile, disparaging and dismissive comments. Can you? Tue 29 Sep 2009 14:11:14 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=64#comment22 22. At 1:57pm on 29 Sep 2009, easterngreen wrote:"This discussion thread seems to be going nowhere.'The starting point of this 'debate' was Doctuer_Eiffel's statement that he makes a point of not reading novels listed for the Booker prize.'This arguement is fundamentally flawed." What argument? Are you saying I am a liar? I don't read Booker prize books. Get over it. There are millions of books to read so I don't need your bookier than thou Booky beauty pageant. The stink of hierarchy is getting overwhelming. Pretentious yourself who says the books you read are "good"? You are obviously unaware of the change in the publishing industry. Perhaps we should have a competition for which publishers are "good" or for who reads a book "good" or for whoever turns the page in a "good" way the best? How about a competition for "good" readers WITH the largest score card of books read or who can read the most "good" books at one time without losing the whole plot. Or maybe we can have a competition to see if there are any "good" readers who actually have a life, are intelligent, and can enjoy reading without being led by the nose. Tue 29 Sep 2009 13:25:53 GMT+1 easterngreen http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=61#comment21 This discussion thread seems to be going nowhere. The starting point of this 'debate' was Doctuer_Eiffel's statement that he makes a point of not reading novels listed for the Booker prize.This arguement is fundamentally flawed. My counter-arguement is that a good book is a good book, regardless of how popular it is or how acclaimed it might be by the 'wrong' people. If you are genuinely put off reading a book or watching a film or listening to music based on their sales figures or number of award nominations that's highly pretentious. Why not just judge each work on it's own terms and not the context of how it has been received? Tue 29 Sep 2009 12:57:57 GMT+1 Dearg_Doom http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=58#comment20 I am Dearg Doom.vlad-let -'...to be labeled a "Spam Fan" for simply being interested in how other people choose seems a little harsh.'Indeed yes, I take your point and regret that this may have come across as name calling. That wasn't my intention and perhaps I tried to stretch the metaphor a little too far. I accept that your points re wanting to know how other people select works of fiction were genuine.I also accept that as someone who reads a great deal but has very little time for works of fiction, my 'two cents worth' would be best viewed from this perspective. I would hope that we could have a lively and even animated discussion about this or any other subject without causing offence or irritation or being overly provocative.After all, it was a wise woman who said,"There's really no need to be rude.";) Mon 28 Sep 2009 16:08:03 GMT+1 vlad-let http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=55#comment19 At 08:36am on 25 Sep 2009, Dearg_Doom wrote: When they visit music stores, do they ask the cashier for the top five most popular CDs? Are the walls of their home decorated with prints of the five highest selling paintings in history?Perhaps some people do this but I am certainly not one of them. I think the use of Music and Visual Art as an argument doesn't really work. If I were to choose to buy a print of an piece of art it would be something I had already seen and enjoyed. Where and how I would first see it might vary but generally I would probably have visited a gallery at some point and found the work interesting. Music in the same way is normally bought as a response. I may hear something I enjoy and choose to investigate that artist. A friend may recommend a certain album to me and I may choose to investigate it.To respond to fiction however one needs to have read it and while I am able to respond negatively to a book I first have to spend money on said book in order to read it. Being someone of limited financial means this can be something of a drag. Therefore I find it interesting to hear what other people have to say about books - be they perfect strangers or close friends. Obviously I would not take their opinion as the truth about the book but if their response to a book intrigued me I might choose to spend money and read that book.I find the concept of choosing a work of fiction completely independently quite difficult. It would probably involve walking into a library blindfolded and picking something off the shelf - and yet still someone somewhere has chosen what will be placed in the library. You say that bookshops are being turned to book supermarkets but should my response to this be to not read. I hope not. Therefore I choose to interact with others in my quest for something I will enjoy. Whether the Booker Prize Panel is a good choice is obviously debatable but to be labeled a "Spam Fan" for simply being interested in how other people choose seems a little harsh. Mon 28 Sep 2009 06:49:26 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=52#comment18 Thankyou Dearg_Doom but I am not a Stuckist it is a complement I do not deserve. Perhaps I should join the Stuckists and leave just before they become part of the establishment.It is the Publishing establishment which is destroying publishing. It is precisely the slavish over adapting bimbos (male, female, and the third kinds)telling others what to think, how to think, and how to put the little finger up in the face of their intransigence to the next atrocity.Book shops have been turned to book supermarkets and the result is that loss of intimate personal communication which is part of the story of any publication. The competitions are divisive. They disempower authoring and empower book consumer marketing strategies. Never has there been a better and more appropriate time for oblique strategies for writers.17. At 11:23pm on 23 Sep 2009, ChristineBookLover wrote:"There's really no need to be rude. I don't understand your comment at all - what did you mean? Book reading is definitely not dying ... have you been in a bookshop lately?" Yes there is. Your problem not mine. Think. Yes it is. Yes. Sat 26 Sep 2009 14:12:44 GMT+1 Dearg_Doom http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=49#comment17 I am Dearg Doom.The good Doctuer_Eiffel, while a Stuckist, is in this case very correct. He has clearly made his point. People who choose not to eat processed pork are not closed minded philistines. They simply are aware of what a meat processing plant does to meat. The Man Booker, media response and conditioning, marketing and art competitions in general are simply a great spam factory. Some people like processed pork, clearly a lot do.Also, can we please stop calling fiction 'Books' as if this part of publishing is all there is. The Man Booker Prize (and it's international version) is a creative writing/fiction competition. As such, someone who has no interest in dreary self serving memoirs or made up nonsense would simply not be tempted by a list of populist fiction. 'Book Clubs'? surely you mean popular fiction appreciation clubs, or do your book clubs regularly read technical manuals, academic publications and factual histories, for example. I doubt it.The Spam Fans have demanded to know just how the good Doctuer selects the next book that he will read. I find this question mind numbing. How do they choose which piece of music or visual art they will interact with next? Are they capable of making any independent choice based on an independent view? Or is their life and interaction with art, just a series of lists and tick boxes? When they visit music stores, do they ask the cashier for the top five most popular CDs? Are the walls of their home decorated with prints of the five highest selling paintings in history?Fiction is dying. The novel is getting smaller and less are being sold. There are less book stores in every town, every year. People buy their books from large bookstore chains, from supermarkets and online. In a nation where most adults have read Rowling’s fairly tales and most have not read, for example the works of Fyodor Dostoyevsky or Franz Kafka, in a nation where more people have read the memoirs of Jade Goody than the works of Immanuel Kant, this discussion is at best ridiculous. Fri 25 Sep 2009 07:36:05 GMT+1 ChristineBookLover http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=47#comment16 There's really no need to be rude. I don't understand your comment at all - what did you mean? Book reading is definitely not dying ... have you been in a bookshop lately? Wed 23 Sep 2009 22:23:52 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=44#comment15 "...probably Doctuer_Eiffel's worst nightmare!"No my worst nightmare involved somebody being flayed alive who was still conscious as they were taken apart with sharp knives very slowly...No not really. Actually it is people like you bookier than thou types who make book reading die as fast as it is. Try reading a book you read when you were a teenager all those years ago and see if it makes ANY sense to you. Wed 23 Sep 2009 21:49:03 GMT+1 ChristineBookLover http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=41#comment14 Choosing books is really quite challenging, given that there are so many to choose from. I too would be interested to know how you choose, Doctuer_Eiffel. I am currently in two book clubs (probably Doctuer_Eiffel's worst nightmare!), which has really widened my reading. I have read books that I would never have chosen myself from the back blurb, cover or subject area. A couple of examples are The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver and Perfume by Patrick Susskind. However, choosing books for the groups is often quite problematic as we all have different tastes. The interesting thing is that, despite our different tastes, we quite often find we like something unexpectedly. While we do read prize winners from time to time, we are very careful to include books that will never make best-seller lists. We tend to have categories (currently we each have one country and we choose a book set in or about that country) to give us a starting point. We have also asked for recommendations from bookshops and libraries. From the perspective of a book club, a book that many people disliked often produces the best discussions too. The Reader fits into this category - several people were appalled by it, but we had quite a heated discussion about it as it was clear that the book could be read on several levels. It must be difficult having to choose books to last for several months to come and even worse if all the books you have chosen turn out to be awful! Wed 23 Sep 2009 08:20:29 GMT+1 vlad-let http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=38#comment13 P.S. Any other comments/ideas on book choosing would be interesting to read. Mon 21 Sep 2009 16:02:02 GMT+1 vlad-let http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=35#comment12 I don't comment on blogs very often but this discussion interested me and so I thought I'd have a go.I think that both points of view which have been expressed are interesting. There seems to be a popularisation of things and people are, at times, very eager to be told what to do. However as someone who enjoys reading a lot and generally likes to be challenged in the things I read and discover new styles and authors I find myself at a loss when choosing what to read. How does on decide when there are, as Doctuer_Eiffel rightly said, "millions of books published".I would love to know how you choose what you will read next Doctuer_Eiffel. And I hope that didn't sound sarcastic because I am genuinely interested in this. Do you pick at random and hope that the book is good? Do you focus on the blurb and cover etc.? The trouble is there are so many options that it sometimes seems sensible to accept someone's ideas about "good books" be that the Booker Prize or a late night conversation over a few glasses of wine. It does seem a little perverse to ignore the Booker Prize completely as, and this point has been made already, without reading them how will you know whether they are good or not.Anyway there's my musings and I hope you don't see them as accusations. I work in a country where bookshops are limited and libraries are virtually non-existent so choosing books when I go home (to the UK) becomes quite important as they may have to last me 6 months and I have no opportunity to return them or get new/better ones if they are unsatisfactory. Mon 21 Sep 2009 16:00:16 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=32#comment11 "Do I detect someone overlooked for an award at some stage, perhaps?..."Do I detect a thought terminating cliche? Yes I do. Do I detect someone projecting his/her own situation on others. Most probably.There are millions of books published. How could I possibly limit myself?Am I planning to read all of them. No. Follow your glorious Booky leaders and never discover a book for yourself. You know it would spoil your choice not to."If I or johnselfasylum suggested a book we'd enjoyed, would you make a point of not reading it? "No I would just casually not read it. Discovering a book for myself is that much more rewarding and no I don't need to please you which ever way you want to look at it. I don't need your trophy list. I don't buy into ANY of this bookier than thou nonsense. Make your own star charts and keep them for yourself. They don't interest me. Sat 19 Sep 2009 16:20:49 GMT+1 easterngreen http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=29#comment10 I completely agree with ChristineBookLover and johnselfasylum. While no doubt Doctuer_Eiffel you might have many valid points to make about the merit of awards and competitions for art and artists, surely by stating you won't touch anything put forward for an award you are artificially limiting what you can read?I am a big film-fan and many of the points you could make about book prizes - that they are more about boosting commercial potential and industry backslapping than recognising great art - are also true of film awards. But I would never refuse to watch a film because it had been nominated for an Oscar! What's the point? Yes, you'd avoid a lot of over-hyped movies, but you'd also be missing out on some classics.Like the others I am not a lemming who buys books simply according to 'what I am told', but someone with an open mind. If I see something in an award shortlisting that I think I will like that I otherwise would have by-passed, then for all their faults the award procedure has done something useful. Many people probably feel the same.I am not attacking or arguing with you, I simply cannot understand why you could hate awards lists so much you'd never read a book on them? What if you were reading one of your 'approved' books and noted it was on an award shortlist? Would you stop reading it?Do I detect someone overlooked for an award at some stage, perhaps?... Fri 18 Sep 2009 14:35:09 GMT+1 ChristineBookLover http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=26#comment9 So Docteur_Eiffel, I assume you also wouldn't read any Orange prize winners? And by extension, anything recommended by a newspaper or website ... or, in fact, anything recommended by anyone? Where do you draw the line? If I or johnselfasylum suggested a book we'd enjoyed, would you make a point of not reading it? Like many people, I have read fantastic prize-winning books and fantastic books that never have and never would win a prize. Surely it's inevitable that you will have missed out by narrowing your list? Fri 18 Sep 2009 13:38:55 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=23#comment8 Yawn! Followers are never path finders. Run along fanboy and follow your booky book instructions. Thu 17 Sep 2009 23:33:48 GMT+1 John Self http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=20#comment7 "So why only list Booker books then?"Because you said "I make a point of not reading Booker nominations" and I wanted to provide examples of good books which you would have missed out on as a result. Similarly, if you'd said "I make a point of not reading books by women", I would have offered some worthwhile examples.grignard, while it's true that the Booker shortlist or winner provides publicity to certain books (the prize as first set up as a way of marketing 'literary fiction') and could be seen as a shortcut to recommendations, it's not necessarily a reliable guide. I doubt if 2006's winner The Inheritance of Loss, or 2008's, The White Tiger, will stand the test of time.The Booker tends to get it in the neck from two angles: those who think it's 'pretentious' and doesn't reflect popular reading tastes; and those who, at the other end, think it's too unambitious and middlebrow and doesn't explore the possibilities of fiction. I think this year's longlist, though I've read only a few of them, had something for everyone, from Me Cheeta (a comic fictional Hollywood memoir) at one end, to Nobel-winner JM Coetzee's experimental fake (auto)biography Summertime at the other. Thu 17 Sep 2009 13:51:34 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=17#comment6 So why only list Booker books then? ...cake...eat it. Competitions really are a bore as much as competitive people. Run along to the booky book shop and buy what you are told to. Wed 16 Sep 2009 21:20:58 GMT+1 Y http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=14#comment5 Thanks Razia.When i go into a book shop and see a book with the words, 'booker winner' or 'nominated' it does capture my attention. With hundreds to choose from and unable to read all the blurbs this is a method of differentiating. However i think the short list is too short. Wed 16 Sep 2009 17:40:13 GMT+1 John Self http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=11#comment4 "My approach is unlimited by comparison with yours."I don't think that's right. My approach is to consider reading any book, including Booker nominated ones. Yours is to consider reading any book, excluding Booker nominated ones.Apologies, incidentally, for misspelling your name in the previous post. No disrespect was intended. Tue 15 Sep 2009 16:00:14 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=8#comment3 "That seems a very limiting approach, Docteur_Eiffel."No it means I am not channelled by a media industry to read what it is invested in. Its own hierarchy of approval. I don't need your approval either.How many books are there published in existence now? My approach is unlimited by comparison with yours."Could you specify some books you have enjoyed, so that we can see what benefits you're reaping from this policy?"We? Your view is far too partial for me to even contemplate. Carry on sucking up to the publishing establishment. I don't need the Booker Prize to get between me and the millions of books that I have as a choice. And no find your own books I am not interested in your bookier than thou games. Tue 15 Sep 2009 12:13:49 GMT+1 johnselfasylum http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=5#comment2 That seems a very limiting approach, Docteur_Eiffel. I can't think what the reasoning behind it would be, given that every year produces different books judged by a different panel. To specifically "make a point of not reading Booker nominations" means you have missed out on some of the best fiction of the last 20 years and beyond, from Ishiguro's The Remains of the Day, through Coetzee's Disgrace to Toibin's The Master, Mitchell's Cloud Atlas and Woodward's I'll Go to Bed at Noon (the last three all nominated in the same year!).Could you specify some books you have enjoyed, so that we can see what benefits you're reaping from this policy? Sun 13 Sep 2009 11:45:15 GMT+1 Doctuer_Eiffel http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=2#comment1 I make a point of not reading Booker nominations. Thu 10 Sep 2009 16:53:35 GMT+1 dennisjunior1 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/raziaiqbal/2009/09/all_aboard_the_booker_express.html?page=0#comment0 Razia:Thanks, for the Booker Express this year....=Dennis Junior= Wed 09 Sep 2009 00:12:33 GMT+1