Philip Roth Wins the Man Booker

Full disclosure: I've never read any Philip Roth, but for years I've been thinking  about putting at least one of his works on my "should-read" list.  And today's announcement gives me more reason. In spite of being relatively new, The Man Booker International Prize is one of the most prestigious awards in the Anglophone world. Previous winners include Chinua Achebe and Alice Munro. I've long known that Roth is considered one of the greatest living American writers, but I was unprepared for the remarks of Rick Gekoski, who chaired the panel of judges: His career is remarkable in that he starts at such a high level, and keeps getting better. In his 50s and 60s, when most novelists are in decline, he wrote a string of novels of the highest, enduring quality. Indeed, his most recent, Nemesis (2010), is as fresh, memorable, and alive with feeling as anything he has written. His is an astonishing achievement. High praise.  But not all of the judges hold Roth in such high regard. You can read about the dissenting view here. In either case, I'm curious to read some Roth now. If, like me, you've never read any Philip Roth and are wondering where to start, I know many readers recommend The Ghostwriter, the first novel with his recurring character Nathan Zuckerman. A critic at The Telegraph recommends these five Roth books. Happy reading.....

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