Harris and Mendelson fail to make Man Booker shortlist

By Josh Jackman, September 10, 2013
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(Photo: Flickr / Peter McConnochie)

(Photo: Flickr / Peter McConnochie)

Eve Harris and Charlotte Mendelson have missed out on the 2013 Man Booker Prize shortlist.

The two writers, both 40, had been longlisted along with 11 other novelists, but failed to make the cut on the six-strong shortlist, announced this week.

First-time novelist Eve Harris’s The Marrying of Chani Kaufman is about Chani, a 19-year-old living in Charedi Hendon who is struggling with her imminent marriage to a stranger.

The author said she was “not at all” disappointed to be left off the shortlist.

“To have been longlisted was so thrilling and for the book to have gained so much exposure, I can’t really complain.

“Because it was so hard to place the book with a publisher (there were countless rejections), it also gave me a huge sense of validation.”

Charlotte Mendelson’s book Almost English — her fourth novel — also focuses on the pressures and powerful ties which come with family.

In it, she chronicles the story of 16-year-old Marina’s struggles to fit into a traditional English public school environment as an awkward half-Hungarian misfit.

A spokesman for Pan Macmillan, Ms Mendelson’s publisher, said it was “fantastic that she was on the longlist, because it’s so prestigious. It would have been great to have been on the shortlist, but that’s how it is.”

Harvest, by Jim Crace, is the bookmakers’ favourite to take home the prestigious award which carries prize money of £50,000.

The winner will be announced on October 15.

Last updated: 11:53am, September 12 2013