Unfortunately it hasn’t turned out that way, the prize instead going to Anne Enright – congratulations to her instead!
The Gathering by the 45-year-old Dublin writer was somewhat of a surpise winner, most pundits picking a two way constest between Jones and McEwan.
The Booker Prize site reported that the betting war was furious in the final days with the two major bookmakers at odds over the likely winner. Ladbrookes had McEwan’s On Chesil Beach with odds of 6/4 to win, while rival William Hill is tipping Jones’s Mister Pip, also as the 6/4 favourite.
Jones’ novel, Mister Pip, tells the stort of a Mr Watts, who takes over as village teacher on the island of Bougainville in 1991, using Charles Dickens’ “Great Expectations” as his one and only text for the children.
Jones said after the award ceremony, “I’m a little bit disappointed but I’m not crushed”. On the upside, it must be fantastic to have been recognised internationally and making it to the Booker short list will surely give the sales a lift.