Posts Tagged ‘Ngugi wa Thiong’o’

Let the Nobel Follies begin!

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011
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Not obscure enough for the prize

Welcome to this year’s Nobel Literature Prize.  Pretty much like last year’s Nobel Literature Prize.

It’s hard to beat the Literary Saloon to the draw:  They led the guessing with a July 1 column, “Nobel Prize speculation (already?!?).”  The site admitted: “Not surprisingly, most of the odds resemble the closing odds for the 2010 prize, but there are big differences, so punters are advised to compare odds before placing their bets.”  Cormac McCarthy (9/2) was just ahead of Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o (11/2) at Ladbrokes.  Huffington Post picked up the cry here.

We can recycle last year’s reasons why McCarthy won’t get the prize.  Blogger John Matthew Fox thinks he won’t get it because he’s too popular: “The trend over the last few years from the academy is to choose authors that leave a great deal of the world scratching their head and saying “who?” Le Clézio? Please.”

Number Two

Apparently, The Guardian agrees: It has declared Adonis the frontrunner – wasn’t he the frontrunner for awhile last year?

Ladbrokes has made the 81-year-old – who has been described as “the most important Arab poet of our time” – its 4/1 favorite. “Adonis has been a permanent fixture on the shortlist in the past and the odds suggest this could be his year,” said spokesman Alex Donohue.

He’s just ahead of Tomas Tranströmer. “After hitting the woodwork last year we think Tranströmer has a superb chance of atoning for defeat,” said Donohue.  That would certainly be nice. But the Swedish judges seem reluctant to award one of their own.

Tomas Venclova anyone?  He hasn’t surfaced on Ladbrokes long list yet.

Yesterday’s post at the Literary Saloon has all the sites to check as the countdown begins here.  Ladbrokes’ betting is here.

 

 

12 more hours to the Nobels…Cormac McCarthy now #1

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010
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Man of the hour ... perhaps only that

Ladbrokes’ site is up again, and the bets seem to be reshuffling in an inexpicable fashion.  Take a look for yourself.  America’s Cormac McCarthy has edged to the top spot for this year’s Nobel in literature, pushing Kenya’s Ngugi wa Thiong’o to #2.  Haruki Marukami and Swedish poet Tomas Tranströmer remain stable in the #3 and #4 slots.

But Poland’s Adam Zagajewski has now dropped way down to #20, and some of the rest is pure craziness:  Néstor Amarilla (we’ve rather taken a shine to him) is suddenly at the bottom of the list, with the notation “closed.”  What does that mean, if anyone put any money on him at all? Which someone must have done, to give him any ranking at all a few days ago…

In an alternative universe, Unibets, puts the Kenyan Ngugi wa Thiong’o at the top, with Néstor Amarilla as #2.  Huh?  As Literary Saloon points out in its excellent analysis, why wouldn’t someone bet for the Argentinian at Ladbroke’s, where the payout would be higher?  (Maybe because it’s “closed.”) 

Péter Nádas has been added to the list.  Joyce Carol Oates is #9.  Other names have moved up and down the list.  Check it out.  Only a few more hours to go.