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Booksellers ready sales plans for 'strong' Booker longlist
01.01.70 | Philip Jones
Booksellers have welcomed the 13 titles longlisted for this year's Man Booker Prize, despite those books on the list currently available having been outsold by Katie Price's new novel last week.
Rodney Troubridge, Waterstone's fiction marketing planner, described the list as "very Waterstone's", adding "we're really excited, there are lots of really fab books" , and that the chain was pushing out POS on the titles. "Normally we've left the longlist to stores' own discretion, but this time we've suggested they do as much as possible with it."
Indies were also pleased with the list, with Matt Taylor of the Chepstow Bookshop commenting: "there are good things on there we didn't expect", also highlighting Carey and Tsiolkas. He added "It's good to see David Mitchell on there, every bookseller's favourite."
While Ron Johns of the Falmouth Bookshop said "we'll be piling them up, they're titles we'll sell very strongly . . . it would be nice if an outsider won, it puts them in the footsteps of greatness."
Jonathan Ruppin from Foyles said: "It's a very strong longlist indeed, with a healthy mix of familiar names and unsung writers fully deserving of wider recognition." He added: "David Mitchell is the man to beat, despite the bookmakers' arbitrary favouring of Peter Carey and Andrea Levy, while Christos Tsiolkas and Emma Donoghue should be reasonably confident of making the shortlist."
Looking at sales figures for the longlistees this year, three (Donoghue, Jacobson, McCarthy) are yet to be published, while previously shortlisted Galgut has not yet troubled the Top 5,000 since publication in April. However, the bestselling title on the longlist has never won, which counts out twice-shortlisted Mitchell, whose The Thousand Autumns . . . has garnered volume sales of 29,196 to date.
In total those longlisted titles available sold 6,149 copies last week, compared with 13,384 copies sold of the two available editions of Price's Paradise last week.
The shortlist will be announced on 7th September, and the winner, who takes home £50,000 on 12th October.