Cheat Sheet for the Tournament of Books 2015

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Let’s be honest. None of us has read all 16 books that are competing in this year’s epic Tournament of Books at The Morning News. But that doesn’t mean we can’t pick our favorites, make snap judgments, and moan about the eventual winners and losers.

Here is everything you need to know to fake your way through the tournament. From reviews to YouTube clips, from blog posts to formal interviews, we have compiled the best summaries of each competitor so you can get all huffy about your hasty opinions.

And just to make things extra contentious, I will list the books in numerical order, according to which ones I want to win.

– Brian Hurley

1. Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill

Review at The New York Review of Books

Hitting Shelves at Fiction Advocate

2. All the Birds, Singing by Evie Wyld

Review at Fiction Advocate

Hitting Shelves at Fiction Advocate

3. A Brave Man Seven Storeys Tall by Will Chancellor

Review at Flavorwire

Excerpt at Fiction Advocate

4. Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay by Elena Ferrante

Review of the two previous novels in the series at The New Yorker

5. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Blog post at The New Yorker

6. An Untamed State by Roxane Gay

Review at Bookforum

Book Club Chat at The Rumpus

Reading at Politics and Prose

7. Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer


Review at The Guardian

Excerpt at io9

8. Wittgenstein Jr by Lars Iyer


Review at The Millions

9. Adam by Ariel Schrag

Graphic review at The Rumpus

10. Redeployment by Phil Klay

Review at The Rumpus

Interview at BookTV

11. A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James

Review at The New York Times

Reading at Politics and Prose

12. The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters

Review at NPR

Reading at Politics and Prose

13. Silence Once Begun by Jesse Ball

Interview at The Paris Review

14. The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell

Review at The New Yorker

Reading at Sceptre Books

15. Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

Review at The New York Times

16. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

Review at The Washington Post

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