Tournament of Books: Pre-Tournament Playoff Round

The Tournament of Books is gearing up for what's promising to be a lot of fun. Before the opening round we are treated to a pre-Tournament match up to decide who will go on in the competition. This match was judged by none other than Geraldine Brooks who won the Pulitzer Prize for her novel March. Brooks was tasked with deciding between Kate Atkinson’s Life after Life and Fiona Maazel’s Woke up Lonely. You can read her critique of both books and see who emerged victorious by visiting the ToB page. Spoiler alert: You may not want to read too closely if you’ve got these on your to-read list.

Now, mark your calendars! Opening round will take place this Thursday, March 6 when The Luminaries goes head-to-head with Hill William. Funny aside: Scott McLanahan, author of Hill William withdrew his novel from the Tournament via Facebook on Monday. Or at least he tried to. ToB’s Kevin Guilfoile responded by saying, “No, he can't do that. Hill William will remain in the ToB as advertised." Guilfoile went on to say, "He can't withdraw from the ToB any more than I can unread Hill William, which I wouldn't want to do, because, despite never having heard of Scott McLanahan before he was shortlisted for the ToB, I enjoyed it…" There you have it. Things are heating up!

The full Tournament schedule is up now. I’ve just started Daniel Alarcon’s At Night We Walk in Circles and I absolutely loved Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch. So, I’ll be paying close attention come March 13 and 14. Which match are you most excited about?