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The Booker Prize shortlist of six works of fiction is announced

The six novels on the Booker Prize 2022 Shortlist.
Booker Prize Foundation
The six novels on the Booker Prize 2022 Shortlist.

The shortlist of novels for this year's Booker Prize has been announced. A panel of judges winnowed down the longlist of 13 books to the following six titles:

Glory by NoViolet Bulawayo

Small Things Like These by Claire Keegan

The Trees by Percival Everett

The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida by Shehan Karunatilaka

Oh William! by Elizabeth Strout

Treacle Walker by Alan Garner

Announcing the shortlist live from the Serpentine Pavilion in London, Booker Prize judges chair Neil MacGregor said judges are "completely free to set their own criteria" but that they were looking for authors who "created a world, an imagined world that we can feel as our own." In all six books, he said, "Something momentous happens to an individual or to a society. They realize what they are and what they can become."

They're also "not too long," showing "great editing," he joked.

The other judges were academic and broadcaster Shahidha Bari; historian Helen Castor; novelist and critic M. John Harrison; and novelist, poet and professor Alain Mabanckou.

The long and shortlists were selected from 169 novels published between Oct. 1, 2021, and Sept. 30, 2022, and submitted by publishers. The Booker Prize is open to works by writers of any nationality, written in English and published in the U.K. or Ireland.

All of the shortlisted authors receive £2,500 (nearly $2,900) and a specially bound edition of their book. The winner — to be announced Oct. 17 — receives £50,000 (nearly $58k).

This year the Booker Prize organizers held a competition for book clubs across the United Kingdom. Gaby Wood, director of the Booker Prize Foundation said that among the six that were chosen were a club in Glasgow where they bake cakes to match the books and a club in Swansea that's been meeting together for 40 years. The clubs will each be assigned one of the shortlisted books to read and review on social media. Members of one club will win the chance to attend the announcement of the Booker Prize winner in October.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Elizabeth Blair is a Peabody Award-winning senior producer/reporter on the Arts Desk of NPR News.