Julian Barnes won the Man Booker Prize for Fiction last night for “The Sense of an Ending,” a slim novel whose narrator must grapple with the fallibility of his memory and sense of self when a friend’s long-ago suicide returns to haunt him.
Hilary Mantel’s Thomas Cromwell saw to it that there could be only one winner in this year’s Man Booker Prize. Yet all six finalists were presented with something that the canny Tudor statesman would himself have prized: a hand-bound copy of their novel.
Howard Jacobson won the Man Booker Prize for Fiction last night with “The Finkler Question,” a dark comedy about a man convinced that tragic love is his destiny. It is the first overtly comic novel to win the prize in its 42-year history.
Stella Rimington has stared down KGB operatives and outwitted IRA militants. As the former director general of MI5 -- where she was both the first female boss and the first to be publicly named -- she’s no stranger to media scrutiny, either. Yet as head judge of this year’s Man Booker Prize, she finds herself flummoxed by the vitriol of London’s literati.
Hilary Mantel has won the Costa Book of the Year award for “Bring Up the Bodies,” the first time an author has received that prize and the Man Booker Prize for the same novel. She accepted the honor, which comes with a check for 30,000 pounds ($47,250), during a champagne reception at London restaurant Quaglino’s.